March 24, 2023
O'Connell Named North America's Top Female Coach

Kathleen O’Connell described her success as changing Kim Hammond because the #1 feminine coach in North American Thoroughbred British racing historical past.

For a lot of of O’Connell’s followers, together with jockey Antonio Gallardo, it represents sufficient optimistic reminiscences to fill a number of albums.

“I used to be speaking to my spouse yesterday and I stated I actually needed it to be mine as a result of she’s achieved a lot for me and my household,” stated Gallardo, who rose to prominence in 2013 by profitable 4 consecutive bets on a single card. At Calder Raceway, the ultimate three for O’Connell. It inspired him to winter. Tampa Bay Downsand her continued help helped her win 5 equestrian championships right here.

“She was like my mom. I am fairly excited,” the driving force stated.

So had been the well-wishers who carved O’Connell’s path to the racetrack after Gallardo scored a half-length victory on a Florida-raised ship. My Eagle Rising Within the fifth race on March 12, it is a dash for the maiden claiming 3-year-olds. The victory was quantity 2,386 in O’Connell’s profession, breaking the tie with Hammond, who remains to be lively.


Picture: SV Pictures

My Eagle Soars breaks virginity in Tampa Bay Downs

What was O’Connell pondering? Perhaps it is the resistance that girls face within the trade early of their profession, or the unbelievable earnings, or all the gorgeous and lasting relationships they’ve constructed of their chosen occupation. And maybe her deceased mother and father, Arlene and Joseph, who needed her to go to school however supported her profession selection each step of the best way.

“Every thing and nothing. As a result of it was a terrific journey. It isn’t simply the vacation spot that issues, it is the journey to get there,” he stated.

O’Connell didn’t beforehand have any particular directions for Gallardo. “I gave him the same old directions – do the perfect you’ll be able to with what you may have.”

You’ll be able to inform from Gallardo’s voice how vital that is to him and due to this fact to O’Connell’s buddies and rivals. He at all times dealt with victory and defeat with grace and humility, and handled every of the horses beneath his care with the sport-raising courtesy and a focus.

“When he broke properly from place 3 within the 10-horse subject and I put him in gear, it took somewhat bit and I used to be like, you recognize, I had a number of luck,” he stated. . “For the reason that horse in entrance of me stopped, I took the lead somewhat early and once I felt the horse exterior (Nice Prince) I turned my whip to the left and my horse was in play. I obtained it, I obtained it, I obtained it. However I would like the wire, belief me.”

“So was I,” O’Connell stated with fun.

Coach Kathleen O'Connell became North America's all-time winning female coach at the Tampa Bay Downs on Sunday, March 12, 2023 as she broke her My Eagle Soars virgin.
Picture: SV Pictures

My Eagle Soars and Kathleen O’Connell march to the winners’ circle in Tampa Bay Downs

My Eagle Soars, collectively owned by Kathleen O’Connell Racing Secure with P and G Zambelli and raised by Stonehedge in Florida, paid $14.40 to win after finishing six furlongs in 1:11.86.

O’Connell started coaching on his personal in 1981 and has been a two-time lead teacher at Tampa Bay Downs. He additionally earned a title on Calder. He at present trains roughly 60 horses in and between Tampa Bay Downs. Gulfstream Park.

It earned 9 graded shares, three of which from 1997-2000. flaming sword , a product of the late Gilbert G. Campbell’s breeding and racing operation that has turn into synonymous with O’Connell. Different ranked victories included the 2011 Tampa Bay Derby (G2). Watch me go ; 2003 Bonnie Miss Stakes (G2), with Ivanavinalot ; With the 2019 Sam F. Davis Stakes (G3) Nicely Outlined ; and back-to-back runs of the Princess Rooney Stakes (G2) in 2018 and 2019 stormy embrace .

This press launch has been edited by the BloodHorse Workforce by way of content material and magnificence.

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