Reiswig’s Horses Making Presence Felt

BY JIM WELLS

You can phrase it several ways…drought, dry spell, slump, but regardless of   the nomenclature there is an unmistakable feeling when it changes.

Relief

Followed sometimes by joy, maybe even elation.

“I feel like I just broke my maiden a second time,” said winning rider Josh Romero. “It’s been three weeks since I’ve won one.”

His winning mount, a 3-year-old filly named Sunlight Seven, had the stronger argument in this particular instance. She actually broke her maiden after twelve attempts. She was 0-for-12 until Romero took her to the finish line ¾ length in front of Hiclass Whisky and Jorge Torres Friday night.

Meanwhile, the horse’s owner, Brenda Reiswig, was feeling a bit of pride and maybe elation, too, after her horse’s triumph, a winning effort she watched online at her home in Bismarck, N.D.

Normally, Reiswig and her husband, Duane, would have been in the winner’s circle for such an occasion. They are at their home in Shakopee as many weekends as not when her horses run at Canterbury.

She could not have been more pleased for Sunlight had she been in winner’s circle Friday night. Winning is winning in North Dakota also and carries with it many if not the same number of sentiments experienced in Minnesota.

“Oh, she ran a very nice race, especially after stumbling (on the break),” Reiswig said. “She has tried and come close a number of times but never gotten there first.  She deserved it.”

Reiswig has the wherewithal to say such things…with authority.

She has as around 100 horses, including her mares and babies, two-year-olds and retired racers, many of them at her ranch in Oklahoma. “That’s where the bulk of our horses are, where all of our mares and babies are,” she explained.

Reiswig has some 20 broodmares, so she is as active at that end of the industry as she is at the racing end.

Her horses compete in Oklahoma, New Mexico and Texas and she has raced at Canterbury, also, for the last decade. She frequently races head to head against her brother, Dave Wisdom, at Remington Park, Ruidoso, or Fair Meadows.

“Oh, yes, we compete against one another,” she said, explaining that this particular competition is conducted in a friendly spirit.

She has around twenty horses in training, the majority of them with Clinton Crawford, the conditioner of Sunlight Seven, and others with Jason Olmstead.

This is Crawford’s first year with a stable in Shakopee and, surely, Reiswig is a reason. “He has other clients besides me,” she added, “but he knew I ran at Canterbury in the past so I am sure he took that into consideration.”

Reiswig is the leading quarter horse owner in the Canterbury standings with six wins, two seconds and five thirds from 32 starts, and earnings of $59,163. She leads Shirley Rosella Pevehouse, who has three wins, a second and three thirds from 14 starts. There are eight other owners with two wins apiece.

Reiswig’s success is shared by the two trainers who handle her horses locally. Olmstead, who won the previous four trainer titles, leads the standings with 14 wins, 16 seconds and 13 thirds from 86 starts, three wins in front of Stacy Charette-Hill and five in front of Crawford.

Romero, meanwhile, picked up his first win in three weeks and his sixth win of the meet, three behind three other riders tied for the lead.

Yet, sometimes, there is nothing any better in the racing world than getting that first win….ever, or in what seems like an eternity.

Sunday Racing Musings

FuturityOnce the obligations of winning such a race were attended to, once the handshakes, backslaps, hugs and nods of congratulation had been received, the interviews conducted and the rush of adrenaline subsided, there was time for family, close friends and the owners of the horse.

Yes, there are duties concomitant with riding the winning horses in significant races and for a second consecutive year they were assumed by Lori Keith.

In those heady moments of semi-solitude in the jockeys lounge after Saturday’s $200,000 Mystic Lake Derby, Keith was on the phone with the owners of Dorsett, who had simply run away from seven rivals as if they were disgraced defensive backs trying to grab the churning legs of the horse’s Dallas Cowboys’ namesake during his prime.

Yes, Dorsett was named for Cowboys running back Tony Dorsett who, you might recall, set an NFL record of 99 yards for the longest run from scrimmage against the Minnesota Vikings on a Monday night in 1983.

In any event, Dorset’s owner and Dallas fan Terry Hamilton was on the phone with Ms Keith after the Derby, having watched the race at home in Canada. Keith was wrapped up in a stunning Star blanket, presented to her by Keith Anderson, vice chairman of the Mdewakanton Sioux Community of Mystic Lake, the sponsors of the race and the Mystic Lake Purse Enhancement program.

Mrs. Hamilton had spotted the blanket on the television screen and fallen in love with it immediately. “Here, my wife wants to talk to you,” said her husband.

Within a matter of moments the two women, Mrs. Hamilton and Ms. Keith conducted their exchange of gifts. Mrs. Hamilton got the blanket. Ms. Keith got the Mystic Lake Derby trophy.

“What, you gave away my trophy,” lamented Mr. Hamilton.

In typical Sioux tradition, Mrs. Hamilton had presented a gift of the trophy to Ms. Keith, who in turn, presented the blanket to Mrs. Hamilton.

Ms. Keith, of course, also talked with her parents, owners of a bistro in the South of France, who watched the race at 12:30 a.m., their time, down the street from the restaurant. Lori imagined her father shooing patrons out of the bistro. “They had to be out by 11,” she said.

“They were happy and proud,” Lori said Sunday. “They were so pleased that I had mentioned them.”

As she does quite often.

The Hamiltons couldn’t have been happier, either. After all, Keith had ridden a Hamilton horse, Hammers Terror, to victory in the first Derby, last year, although she had to withstand a stewards inquiry in that one.

That’s what made Sunday’s victory even more enjoyable. No inquiry. A nice clean trip.

“I beat myself up for weeks after (the 2012 Derby),” Lori said. “So, this one probably was a little more enjoyable.”

Dorsett was simply much the best on Saturday, sweeping past seven rivals as if they were weanlings in the pasture for a three-length win. Vikings defenders clutching at his ankles.

Everyone, rider, owners and trainer, Michael Stidham, were pleased with the win.

“The horse continues to get better, and the rider did a great job,” said Stidham after the race.

Will there be a second encore?

“Well, a lot can happen with a two-year-old,” said Ms. Keith

“Between now and the three-year-old season.” Of course, but if anyone is curious, the two-year-old Hamilton has in mind for next year’s race is Heart to Heart.

By the way, long-suffering fans, the Vikings won that game in spite of Dorsett, 31-27.

Oh, and Hamilton ordered a second trophy – for himself.

CANCHARI TOO BUSY TO CELEBRATE

Luis Canchari and family were standing outside the winner’s circle Sunday afternoon, clearly still pleased with what their son, Alex, accomplished on Saturday.

Alex Canchari, the Minnesota Kid, in the biggest win of his brief career, won the $100,000 Northbound Pride Oaks aboard Stoupinator for trainer Mac Robertson and owner Joseph Novogratz, a head in front of Kipling’s Joy.

There was no time for celebration on Saturday night. “I had to be back at Mac’s barn at 5 a.m.” said Alex.

His family members were clearly delighted with his effort.

Alex’s mother gave him a kiss after the race. His dad was still beaming on Sunday.

“We are proud of him,” said Luis, who rode at Canterbury in the 1980s, having moved to Shakopee from Peru. “It would be nice to see a Minnesota kid win the riding title.”

Alex is doing what he can. He has 35 wins for the second, one behind Ry Eikleberry and six behind Dean Butler, the leaders.

CASH BEGETS MORE CASH

The Reiswigs of Bismarck, N.D. have a fond spot for the two-year-old filly Seis The Royal Cash, a daughter of Royal Cash Dawn.

Mom and daughter were purchased as a package. “We bought the mare in foal,” explained Brenda Reiswig. “We lost the mother a year ago, so this one has had a hard time. She has a special place in our hearts.”

Even more special now.

Seis The Royal Cash was sent off at 16-1 in Sunday’s North Central Quarter Horse Futurity, a bit of a shock to Reiswig. “I thought ‘oh, oh,'” said Reiswig.

All was well nonetheless.

Seis the Royal Cash, with Ismael Suarez Ricardo up, stunned nine rivals, taking the inside path to victory in front of Sportwagon and Engine Number Nine.

Trainer Vic Hanson summed up the victory succinctly.

“We drew well,” he said.

Indeed. The inside has been a boon of late.

“It evened out for a while there,” said Hanson. “Now it’s a little more to the inside, again.”

Nonetheless, Seis The Royal Cash claimed the winner’s share of the $45,050 purse for her connections, paying $35.20, $16.20 and $5.80 across the board.

Hanson handles the Reiswig horses at Canterbury, 20-some in all.

This blog was written by Canterbury Staff Writer Jim Wells. Wells was a longtime sportswriter at the Pioneer Press and is a member of the Canterbury Park Hall of Fame.