TOC will partner with trainers Matt Chew, Phil D’Amato, Ron Ellis and Howard Zucker to offer a FREE “Conformation Clinic” at Santa Anita on Saturday, Oct. 4. The informal workshop is intended to help participants develop an “eye” for a horse. Attendees will visit the trainers’ barns, where they will view a variety of horses to identify their conformation strengths and weaknesses.
A third-generation horseman, Chew has been successfully training racehorses since 1982. He regularly runs horses at Santa Anita, Del Mar, and Golden Gate Fields. His Del Mar 2014 season was highlighted by an impressive win by Image Of Joplin, who paid a whopping $81.00. Chew designs a training regimen unique to each horse, assessing individual characteristics and building on their strengths. He has participated in many TOC conformation clinics and seminars over the years and has developed a very professional presentation.
After ten years as assistant to Mike Mitchell, D’Amato took over the reins as head trainer in April, 2014. D’Amato saddled Big John B to a powerful win in the Grade 2 Del Mar Handicap on Aug. 23. After claiming the horse this past spring, D’Amato saddled him to three straight wins. Another of his trainees, Midnight Storm, was an upset winner of the Grade 2 Del Mar Derby on Aug. 31.
Ellis, who has been a trainer since the age of 20, has conditioned a long list of graded stakes winners, including Centralintelligence, Teddy’s Promise, Include Me Out, Casino Host, Rail Trip, Vision in Gold, Mr. Gruff, Buzzards Bay, Declan’s Moon, Benchmark, and Twice the Vice. Ellis serves on the board of directors of TOC and has been a commentator with TVG Network since 2006.
A native of New York, Zucker has been training Thoroughbreds for more than 35 years, beginning at racetracks on the east coast before relocating to California in 1983. He has developed and trained stakes horses such as Crafty C.T., Madame Pietra, Awesome Daze, Moscow Changes, Our Shining Hour, Synnin and Grinnin, Queen of the Catsle, Well Monied, and Bio Pro. A very accessible trainer, he is always happy to spend time educating new owners and has provided his expertise at TOC educational seminars and conformation clinics numerous times.
The event will begin at 10:00 a.m. at the Top O’ The Stretch just past Clockers’ Corner at Santa Anita Park. Santa Anita Park is located at 285 W. Huntington Dr, Arcadia, CA 91007. Since the workshops will take place in the stable area, suitable footwear is recommended. Although it is free and open to the public, reservations are recommended and can be made by calling TOC at (626) 574-6620 or by clicking here.