Florida pinhooker Randy Hartley is training a string of horses in Southern California, but he will continue to be involved in reselling juveniles purchased as yearlings or weanlings though Hartley/De Renzo Thoroughbreds.
“I’ve got 12 horses, six at Del Mar and six at San Luis Rey Downs,” said Hartley on July 21 while attending the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July select yearling auction. “There are some older horses that we had with other trainers that needed rehabbing, and (country singer) Toby Keith has sent me some 2-year-olds that haven’t been through a sale.”
Training in California, according to Hartley, will help him meet new people and that could help when he and his pinhooking partner, Dean De Renzo, are selling horses at sales of 2-year-olds in training.
“If I stayed in Florida, I was just going to get stagnant,” Hartley said. “I felt like I needed an edge for this next coming year because it’s going to be tough. It (training in California) will give me more confidence than if I was floating around on a raft out in a lake at home. I’ve already met people like (trainer) Peter Miller; he happened to be in the barn behind me. He buys a few 2-year-olds, and now that I’ve met him and been to his house for dinner, when he comes to the 2-year-old sales, I think he’ll come by my barn and see what I’ve got.”
Hartley doesn’t know how long his racetrack venture will last, but he’ll divide his time between California and Florida when it’s time to start preparing yearlings for the 2010 juvenile auctions.
“I’m just going to see how it goes,” Hartley said. “I’ve got a good crew back home and a good crew in California. (Trainer) Mike Mollica is helping me in California, so I can leave there and come home for a week or two at a time.”
Hartley and De Renzo sold The Green Monkeyfor a world Thoroughbred auction record price of $16 million to Demi O’Byrne at the 2006 Fasig-Tipton Florida select juvenile auction. The pinhookers had purchased the son of Forestry, as a yearling, for $425,000 at the 2005 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July sale.