OReilly on Racing: McLeod Likes That 200 Days Of Racing in New York Sector, Daily Racing Form, 1957-05-08


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r ■■: ■• ■ ■ ■ "" I NORMAN R. YORKIE McLEOD t ; 4 OReilly on Racing Mcleod Likes That 200 Days Of Racing in New York Sector By TOM OREILLY . JAMAICA, L. I., N. Y., May 7. — Norman Robert McLeod telephoned his pal, Hedley Woodhouse, last week, to wish him luck riding Mister Jive in the Kentucky Derby. Mrs. Woodhouse answered the phone. "Hedley just pulled away," she laughed, "boy, was he excited! Jumping up an down, yelling —mr:mrmm wheres this? where s that? The poor man never would have got away if I hadnt had everything ready for him. Oh, just a minute," she suddenly exclaimed, "theres somebody blowing a horn outside." After a short wait, Mrs. Woodhouse returned to the phone and "Oh, Lord, he had to come back. I forgot to give him his a As the tanned, blue-eyed and graying McLeod told this story, he puffed contentedly on his ever-present cigar and observed. "Thats women. Remember everything but the tickets!" The 46-year-old* McLeod, who started training a stable of eastern horses, with considerable success, just three years ago, was safe in making this comment since his own wife, Louise, to whom he has been married for 27 years, is in Florida, where their 15-year-old son, Phillip, attends Hialeah High School. They wont come North to their Floral Park, L. I., home until school closes. McLeod trained for some years on the West Coast before coming East. "I like it in New York best because you have 200 days of racing during which you dont have to move," he said. "Saratoga? Heck, that aint a move. Thats a vacation. Out on the Coast you have to travel from Mexico to Canada. Anyway, I knew all the officials and a lot of other people around here and its nice to race in New York because the purses are big all year round." Born and raised in Sault Ste. Marie, McLeod went to school in "both sous," Canada and the U.S.A. His grandfather. Robert McLeod, a lumberman, had raced trotters in both Michigan and Ontario. Norm started galloping horses for the S*ern Brothers in his home town and wound up doing the same at Winnipeg for Andy Robinson, in 1927. He then went to work for the Barnes Brothers, Stub and Dudge, who took him to Juarez and Tijuana. At the latter place he caught on with the noted Baron Long, builder of Caliente and owner of the Los Angeles Biltmore and San Diegos famed U.S. Grant Hotel. In six months he was made foreman and assistant to trainer Walter Fenwick. Hod Chief Alomgren as Partner In 1934 he met Chief Alamgren, who was the fire chief of San Diego, and between them they bought 13 horses, none of which ever had been saddled, from Baron Long. They attended the first meeting ever staged at Bay Meadows and did more than good. They found a real good sprinter, among their young horses, named Alviso. and he set a couple of Bay Meadows records that stood for some time. They campaigned from Mexico to Seattle. During the war he stayed in Seattle and headed up a crew patching up B-29s. He also kept a strong hand in racing with a few horses that pulled down the Futurity. Longacres Mile and Tacoma Stakes. At the end of the war he took over the Taste Good Farm Stable of Elmer Spinden, well-known San Francisco baker. He remained with this outfit, on the coast until 1952 when Spinden died. During one of those years he won 52 races, although the stable never went above 14 horses. In 1952 he took over the Saxon Stable of Riley Allison, El Paso oilman. At this time he purchased Marcador from King Ranch and won the Golden Gate Derby with him. In the summer of 53 he made his first Eastern invasion, winning the Cowdin and Babylon Stakes with Invigora-tor. He had a fine year, winning, among other races, the Butler Handicap at Jamaica with Marcador. In 1954 he started Invigorator in the Kentucky Derby and finished third to Dark Star and Native Dancer. That summer he was the leading race winner at Saratoga, when he suddenly quit and took a vacation in California. He started his present public stable in 1955 with horses owned by Mrs. Wallace C. Gilroy, Mrs. Vernon Cardy, Grief Raible and Leslie Combs n. They are still with him. Last year, with Mrs. Gilroy s Oh Johnny, he won the Fountain of Youth Stakes, at Gulfstream, and the Withers and Travers in New York. He then acquired the fine race mare Levee from Arthur B. Hancock, Jr., in Kentucky, through a trade for a broodmare. Levee won the Coaching Club American Oaks, the Monmouth Oaks and the Beldame Handicap. He now has Levee and Oh Johnny on the grounds at Belmont, along with nine two-year-olds. He thinks the best victories of his career were with Levee In the Coaching Club American Oaks and Oh Johnny in the Travers. Levee was 45-to-l when she won 1 Continued on Page forty Seven OReilly on Racing M—— ■ — — — — ■— 1—— 1 — — — ■ Continued from Page Six the Selima Stakes, but McLeod is not a betting man. "I bet a little," he says, "but people who bet much dont have much money." His favorite sports next to racing are hunting and fishing. He has hunted everything from birds to mountain goats and elk. His favorite hunting ground is along the middle fork of the Salmon River, out West. "You have to go in there with packs," he said. He has killed his share of mountain lions, too. "I dont have many trophies at home," he says, "just horns. You cant really haul out the heads from around the Salmon River country." In Florida, he goes out with "an old Florida cracker and we catch snook, jack and kings, in the Gulf." He is stabled at Belmonts barn 18 and is one of the most popular trainers on the grounds. Go West, young man. Then reverse your field. Touchdown !

Persistent Link: https://drf.uky.edu/catalog/1950s/drf1957050801/drf1957050801_6_6
Local Identifier: drf1957050801_6_6
Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800