You know the live race meet is near when the Canterbury stable begins coming to life. Trainers are now sending in their advance teams to prepare barns for the imminent arrival of horses this week. Lay down the mats, hang the tubs, bed the stalls, sharpen the pitch forks.
The main track will open for training on Friday as the sprint to opening day begins in earnest.
All of the top trainers are planning to return. Mac Robertson should hit Shakopee soon in defense of his training title. Bernell Rhone, enjoying a bang-up meet at Tampa Bay Downs, is expected here in the first week of May.
The jockey rumor-mill is churning as it does each spring. Word is Ry Eikleberry will remain in slots-rich New Mexico. Jockey agent extraordinaire Richard Grunder has indicated that he will handle the book of Tanner Riggs, last seen here as a regular member of the jockey colony in 2007. Unconfirmed yet buzzing is that Paul Nolan will go to Assiniboia Downs. Paul has been a mainstay in Shakopee for decades. The all-around good guy would be missed here if that pans out. Bobby Walker Jr. is also rumored to be coming to Canterbury this spring.
With all these rumors, the only thing we know for sure is that nothing is for sure until the subject of said rumor drives through the stable gate, or in some cases doesn’t.
Good news for those that dine in the stable area as the track kitchen will be run by a local restaurant specializing in authentic Mexican cuisine.
This blog was written by Canterbury Media Relations Manager Jeff Maday. Maday has filled multiple positions including Media Relations and Player Relations Manager since the track’s reopening in 1995.