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Pimlico Day 4: Dickie Small, prominent MD trainer passes at age 68


Prominent Maryland trainer Richard (Dickie) Small, who conditioned 1994 Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Concern, died late Friday night after a battle with cancer. He was 68 years old.

He finished his career with 1,199 wins including 36 graded stakes. Three (3) of Small’s trainees won Grade 1 races…

... Concern won the 1994 Breeders’ Cup Classic.
... Broad Brush captured four G1’s the Wood Memorial, Santa Anita Handicap, Suburban Handicap and Meadowlands Cups.
... Caeser’s Wish a MD-bred won the Mother Goose, where she broke Ruffian’s record.

Small was known for helping launch the careers of female riders such as Andrea Seefeldt, Jerilyn Brown, Rosie Napravnik and Forest Boyce. “As far as I’m concerned, the Dickie Small School of Racing is one of the best in the country,” said Maryland Jockey Club stakes coordinator Coley Blind, a friend of Small for more than 40 years. “For as gruff as Dickie could be, especially when he was younger, he had a knack of working well with female riders. Dickie knew what to look for in horses and people. He was a great teacher.”

Social media provided an avenue for folks in the horse racing community to express their thoughts when word of Small’s death was posted on The Maryland Racing Industry group facebook page. Reading through what seemed to be a list of endless comments, one word was prominent, “Gentleman”.

Hall of Fame jockey Chris McCarron who started his career on the Maryland circuit simply commented, “I'm saddened by this news :-( I wish FB had a "don't like" button!!!”

Others expressed their thoughts via Twitter…

                May God Bless You and Keep You Mr. Small.

Recapping posted selections from Saturday, April 5th at Pimlico, had just 7 winners from 10 races (3 Top Selections; payoffs in BOLD) having $2 WIN pay-offs of $3.60 (1st race), $2.60 (2nd), $6.80 (3rd), $12.40 (5th), $11.80 (6th), $2.40 (7th) and $11.40 (9th).

The BEST BET of the Day (13: 2-4-4) Midian (4th race: 3-1 M/L; 3-1 PT) dropped back on the turn and was eased through the stretch finishing last.

The LONGSHOT PICK (14: 4-5-0) Celtic King (5th race: 12-1 M/L; 14-1 PT) squeezed back leaving the starting gate, saved ground the far turn and dropped back in the stretch to finish 7th.

Selections for Sunday, Apr. 6th at Old Hilltop Top will be posted below on race day morning. Main track is FAST, Turf is GOOD.

Soup of the Day at Pimlico: Beef Vegetable

1st race – $5,000 Claiming N1Y for 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#2 – Peace Cat (4-5)
#3 – Peter’s Creek (5-1)
#4 – Side Party Ralph (6-1)

2nd race – $5,000 Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#1/1A – Exhilarate / Deb’s Trip (3-5)
#2 – Dance Off (6-1)
#3 – Float Your Boat (5-2)

3rd race – $12,500 Claiming for 3 y.o. and up – 5 furlongs ON TURF
#10 – Mine N Gems (15-1)  $$$ LONGSHOT PLAY $$$
#5 – Count on Buddy (8-1)
#11 – Saturday At Ten (5-1)

4th race – $8,000 Maiden Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#10 – Lucky Lady (3-1)
#2 – She’s Speightful (8-5)
#8 – Latasense (20-1)

10 cent Jackpot Pick-5… Carryover: $9,813
The Play: 4,8,9 / 3,4,5 / 2,7,11 / 2,3,7 / 1,3,10 ($24.30)

5th race – $25,000 Claiming N2L for 3 y.o. and up – 5 furlongs ON TURF
#4 – Arkle Park (6-1)
#8 – Available (5-2)
#9 – Springs R Loaded (10-1)

6th race – $40,000 Maidens for 3 y.o. – 1 1/16 miles
#4 – Mr. Ticker Talker (9-5)
#3 – Permanent Campaign (7-5)
#5 – Goodbyeseeulater (5-1)

7th race – $42,000 Allowance N1X for 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles ON TURF
#11 – Best Bard (9-2)
#2 – Arrive (3-1)
#7 – Sparking Jewel (8-1)

8th race – $42,000 Allowance N1X for 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles
#2 – Tru Greek (8-1)
#3 – Tooth n Claw (7-2)
#7 – Ghareeb (2-1)

9th race – $25,000 Maiden Claiming for 3 y.o. and up – 5 furlongs ON TURF
#10 – Distorted Dream (9-2)  *** BEST BET ***
#1 – Irish Donnie (4-1)
#3 – Citizen Chris (8-1)

Food for Thought: Baseball Hall of Famers are typically successful in only 3 of 10 plate appearances. Think about it… Good Luck!


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Older Comments about Pimlico Day 4: Dickie Small, prominent MD trainer passes at age 68...

Dick Small was a great trainer and did an amazing job with Concern who was one classy late runner! One of my first jobs in racing was being on the 1994 BC Notes team. I was assigned to Dick and Concern and we talked every day leading up to race. The thing I'll never forget is that Dick drove the van with Concern from MD to KY by himself! Shows what type of horseman he was!
I loved Caeser's Wish and Broad Brush ... as hard-knocking as they come. Another favorite memory of Dickie Small was one of my best betting coups. Dickie Small brought an improving filly named Tactile to New York and shocked them all in both the Gazelle and Beldame. I was on her for both, and it remains one of my biggest back-to back wins on a horse ever.

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                Meet Gary Quill

  I am the most passionate person on the planet when it comes to thoroughbred horse racing! One sunny summer day in 1964 at Timonium Race Track is where my Dad and mentor introduced me to “The Sport of Kings”. Since that day, I have had the pleasure to visit over 40 different tracks across North America. Though an IT professional by trade, I’ve had a part-time gig with the Maryland Jockey Club since 1988.

here are thousands of rail-birds who claim to be great handicappers. Well, I don’t claim to be the best… just the most passionate and one that won’t tout “chalk”. Like a savvy stock broker, I look for value and often find it. Unlike the talking heads on horse racing television networks and the dozens of websites featuring handicapper’s opinions, I’m ACCOUNTABLE. That is, good or bad, you’ll always know how my previously posted picks performed along with a running record of my BEST BET and LONGSHOT Play of the Day selections for Maryland tracks (Laurel and Pimlico) at TheRacingBiz, see "The GQ Approach".

   In addition to focusing on the Maryland thoroughbred racing circuit, each year I follow the Derby Trail and post “GQ’s Derby Double Dozen” in early February. 

   My personal mission is to rejuvenate interest in thoroughbred horse racing. Being able to share my energy, thoughts and opinions on this sport via HRN will certainly help the cause.


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