Web Snyder, one of the first members of the Jockeys’ Guild and a longtime fixture at Charles Town, died June 16 at his West Virginia home. He was 98 years old.
Snyder, whose riding career ended in 1952, was scheduled to ride seven horses on Charles Town’s first ever live racing program in 1933. Unfortunately, delayed by a snowstorm while traveling from Rockingham Park, where he rode the previous day, he missed the card. He would make up for his late start the following day, riding his first winner at Charles Town on a filly named Dolled Up.
Following his career as a jockey, Snyder worked as an outrider at Charles Town for 14 years and subsequently served as a pony rider at the track into his 80’s, retiring for good in 1995. He was inducted into the Charles Town Hall of Fame in 2010, and a race on the Charles Town Classic undercard, the Web Snyder Stakes, is named in his honor.
“He was a legend here for sure,” said Dickie Moore, a longtime friend of Snyder’s who is Charles Town's general manager of racing. “He was well liked by everyone and was a very, very knowledgeable horseman.”
Snyder was born in Crabbottom, Va., to Lon and Naomi Snyder, on Jan. 18, 1913. He served briefly in the Naval Reserve during World War II, receiving an honorable discharge because of the effects of racing injuries.
He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Frances DePasquale Snyder of Charles Town; children, Floyd Snyder of Philadelphia, Pa., Florence Marr of Gautier, Miss., and Diana Narragon of Reston, Va.; several grandchildren; and two great-grandsons.
His first wife, Bernice Chute Snyder, died in 1951.