Page 26 - The Hunt - Spring/Summer 2023
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                  Sally Goswell has managed Fair Hill Training Center since 1994.
At the head of the backstretch and off to the side, a four-horse starting gate serves as a training ground for younger horses to learn
to enter and exit the gate (an exercise in etiquette and socialization) before running their first races. Near the finish line, Michael Trombetta and Michael Matz exchange pleasantries and occasional words with their exercise riders as they pass by the rail. The two veteran trainers are no strangers to the winner’s circle.
On this morning, time passes at a leisurely gait. By the end of the week, about 65 of the almost 400 horses stalled for at least part of the season
in Fair Hill’s 18 privately owned barns will have run a race at one of six regional tracks. Among them they’ll bring in a total of $677,320, charting 15 wins, seven places and seven shows. Inside the trackside clocker tower located at the finish line, Vicky Battaglini keeps watch, walkie-talkie in hand, surveying the track as hawkishly as a mom at an urban playground. Normally, Battaglini doesn’t actually clock the horses. She mainly watches to see if a horse or rider is down. If that happens, she immediately stops the action and alerts the vets and medics if necessary.
She’ll also serve commentary on what’s happening to the handful of people seated on the tower’s wooden benches—visitors, trainers, family members of track employees. “There are three of Grahm Motion’s two- year-olds learning on the track,” she notes, as a bay bracketed by two chestnuts gallops past.
24 THE HUNT MAGAZINE spring 2023

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