“You Take the Chances and Don’t Worry About Your Win Percentage”
In this episode of “Race Horses, etc.” Hall of Fame trainer Nick Zito regales us with stories of training race horses in the glory-days of New York, and credits a trio of African-American grooms for teaching him the basics.
Nick Zito is New York born and raised and the quintessential horse trainer. At the age of 72, he has been training race horses for most of his life. And Nick has never been afraid to take chances when it comes to entering horses. And his daring has paid off in spades. In 2004 Birdstone paid $74 to win the Belmont Stakes, and in 2008 Da’Tara’s Belmont win paid $79!
The Zito Resume:
- Inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 2005
- 2 Kentucky Derby wins (Strike the Gold – 1991, Go For Gin – 1994)
- 1 Preakness win (Louis Quatorze – 1996)
- 2 Belmont Stakes wins (Birdstone – 1994, Da’Tara – 1998)
- 70 starters in Triple Crown Races
- 2 Breeders’ Cup victories (Storm Song – 1996, War Pass – 2007)
- Won the Gr. 1 Whitney Stakes in 2005 and 2008 with New York-bred Commentator
- Earnings (by Zito trained horses) over $111 million
- Selected 18 Grade 1 winners at auction with average purchase price of $178k