Race For Top Trainer
Thanks to our friends at Valor Farm, our Mojo Racing Partnership was introduced to
Bret Calhoun; and following several pleasant conversations thereafter, Bret has agreed to be our Mojo Trainer. According to Ken Carson (General Manager, Valor Farm), “Bret’s a very good horseman, and he’s a nice person too. I think all of the Mojo Partners will like him. You’ll appreciate his candor, and can learn a lot from his racing expertise.”
Bret agrees with the Mojo philosophy that having a lot of fun is the key component of our Partnership, and he wants to try to help us achieve that every step of the way.
According to Lone Star Park’s Trainer Profile: "Calhoun maidens tend to win early, and statistically win at a high rate in their second career race. His win percentage with horses running on the bleeder medication Lasix for the first time is nearly double his overall win percentage." Currently, 56% of Bret’s horses have finished in the money, and nearly half came in second or won their respective races.
A few of Bret’s impressive accomplishments include winning the 2006 Silverbulletday Stakes (G3); 2006 Texas Stallion Stakes; 2006 Allen Bogan Memorial Stakes; sweeping the top four spots in the 2005 Texas Stallion Stakes; finishing second and third in the 2003 Silverbulletday Stakes; and winning the 2003 Arlington-Washington Futurity (G3), as well as 2003 Grand Prairie Turf Challenge. Bret began training horses in 1993 while working at Louisiana Downs, and he saddled his first winner on April 1, 1994 (no joke). Bret’s first stakes win was recorded in the 1994 Sam Houston Oaks. Bret told me that stakes wins certainly are exhilarating (as you would imagine); but a win in any race is just as exciting because the thrill of seeing your horse leading down the stretch feels the same.
When we talk about finding the right horse for our Partnership, Bret shares his knowledge of the Keeneland as well as the Fasig-Tipton Sales process, and he understands that the first Mojo horse will have to be the best that our collective money can buy. Once our Runner is "in training," we’ll see what kind of heart and determination it has, then we’ll figure out the right race for him/her. As Bret put it, “I’ll race at almost any track; but the important thing is finding a race we can win.”
Which brings up an interesting caveat, the Lone Star State does not allow casino-style gambling within its borders. That said, the four states that surround Texas do—particularly at race tracks. While the average track purses in New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana haven’t surpassed what Lone Star Park currently offers, with the ambitions of “racino” owners/operators, there may come a time in the not so distant future where it’ll be to our advantage to ship our runner out of state. Bret mentioned in a recent article for the Star-Telegram that although Texans like to race at home, they won't race there if the purses are meager. After speaking with many of you, I know the purse money issue is on your minds. You can be sure that a thoughtful decision will be made that puts our Partnership in the right position when the time is right.
Stay tuned for the latest "News and Notes," and here's to keeping our Mojo workin’!