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Breeders Cup 2015

Gregory Saddles First Winner at 78

Hollywood Park logo.
Photo: Hollywood Park

Owner-trainer-breeder Bill Gregory stood next to the stall of Charlie’sboywins in Barn 60 North Sunday, still tingling with excitement after his first victory with the 4-year-old gelding in a maiden claiming race Thursday.

“I had a stroke last August; getting up each morning to see my horses keeps me going,” said Gregory, 78.

Gregory and his wife Nancy, the co-owner and co-breeder of the horse, live in Playa del Rey. Gregory retired after spending 40 years as a veterinarian in Woodland Hills and Calabasas.

“I was born and raised in Kentucky and always wanted to be a horse trainer since I was knee-high to a duck,” said Gregory. “We always had show horses but my father said, ‘No, you’re not going to be a horse trainer. We want you to be a vet.’”     

The dutiful son spent four years in college at Kentucky and four more at Auburn before earning his degree in veterinary medicine. “On graduation day, I asked my father why I couldn’t be a track veterinarian, and he said, ‘There’s a bad element on the racetrack,’” recalled Gregory. “I said, ’Dad, there’s a bad element everywhere.’”

After retirement, Gregory finally got his wish, learned the basics from trainer Gary Lewis and took out his trainer’s license eight years ago. When a mare Lewis trained named Spanish Gypsy was injured, she was given to the Gregorys, who bred her to Fruition.        

The resulting foal was named Charlie’sboywins for Bill’s father. Making his seventh start, he won a seven-furlong race Thursday under Kerwin John to make Charlie’s boy Bill mighty happy.

Gregory also trains Philly Slew, a 5-year-old.



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Older Comments about Gregory Saddles First Winner at 78...

I think he is the greatest!! Thanks for the fabulous write up!

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