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.
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.