Trainer Harold Rose, who bred, owned, and trained 2000 Florida Derby (gr. I) and 2002 Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. I) winner Hal's Hope, died today at his north Miami home. He was 92.
Rose's son Barry, also a trainer, said a memorial services is being planned for Wednesday morning.
Rose was inducted into the Calder Hall of Fame in 1997, more than 60 years after he first fell in love with horse racing. A trip to Hialeah Park on Flamingo Day in the early 1930s had changed his life forever. It was on that day that the Bucknell University graduate and mathematics expert would recognize a jockey as one of his childhood friends, bet his horse on a hunch and win at long odds.
Rose bought his first horse in 1951 for $800 and would own others before deciding to give up his business in publishing and turn to the sport full time in 1968. His claim of a filly named Pia Mia for $5,000 in 1970 would lay the foundation of his new endeavor and have an impact on his stable on to the 1990s.
In 1980 and 1982, Rose made two important decisions as a breeder and an owner. One was to breed Pia Mia to Family Doctor, the stallion of a friend, at no charge. The other was to purchase a yearling from the Ocala Breeders‚ Sales Co. The results of those two choices were My G.P. and Rexson's Hope.
In 1983, Rose and his wife, Elsie, celebrated the fruit of those earlier decisions when the two combined to win split divisions of that year's In Reality Division of the Florida Stallion Stakes. Rexson's Hope's performance in the race was so impressive that it earned him a trip to the 1984 Kentucky Derby (gr. I), where he would eventually finish 10th out of a field of 20. It was no matter to the Roses, however, for it was just a dream for them to even participate in the world's greatest horse race.
Harold had been a part of Calder Race Course for three decades and Elsie has even authored four books about their experiences in racing.
Two of his best runners recently had included homebreds, Mia's Hope, who won the 1996 Davona Dale (gr. III) and Bonnie Miss (gr. II) at Gulfstream), and Hal's Hope, winner of the 2002 Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. I) and 2000 Florida Derby.
The Roses made their second trip to the Kentucky Derby with Hal's Hope in 2000. The son of Jolie's Halo earned $1,098,422.
A sentimental favorite in the barn currently is 2-year-old colt Hopefortheroses, a homebred out of Mia's Hope, a daughter of Rexson's Hope.