Mike Repol grew up and went to Aqueduct and Belmont Park, where seeds were planted for cattle for his horse races.
The Queens native and current owner will not be back in Belmont on Wednesday for his opening day, but the significance of the first sport horse racing to return to New York from the coronavirus epidemic certainly did not go unnoticed.
“I think racing is back to normal, great for the sport. But I think racing is bigger when you come back to New York, “the owner of the Repol stables told Rep. The Post. Happens and it’s one thing when they’re watching the Tampa Bay Downs or they’re watching the gulf.
“But the ability to know, you know, there’s a glimmer of hope for the future because that track – half an hour away from me, 10 minutes away from me, an hour away from me – is doing business, I think it gives people some hope and promise that a New normalcy will come though, at least we will feel somewhat normal. “
Repol will have a special interest in horse racing – especially during the third race on Wednesday, when his 2-year-old minor, Todd Pletcher trained prisoner, will run a 5-furlong race with Jockey Irad Ortiz Jr.
Despite Repol’s local roots, it can be a difficult time for a prisoner to become a fan favorite – when a horse named Fawcett will not be on his side. But Repol has high hopes.
“When they usually start and we like them, if he breaks his first, you talk about future hopes and become a champion 2-year-old and 3-year-old derby competitor and probably one day win the Belmont Stakes, since I was 13 years old. I dreamed something like that, ”St. John Grade said.
While Reppol said racing had been his biggest concern for the past few months as the Cowboys-19 plagued the country, he still had to figure out what to do with the intermediate horses. He sent half of them on a break in the town of Ocala Flash to get a break, with the other half going to Galfrim Park in Florida with Pletcher, where racing never stopped.
They are sending the horses back to New York with Belmont on horseback again, opening for training on Wednesday and Saratoga on Thursday.
Like fans, owners in Belmont aren’t approved yet, but Repol understands top priority.
“My thinking about a fan today is very different from three months ago,” he said. “The number one concern is human safety. We always talk about horse racing, how important it is to protect horses, but now it has changed the safety of people who work with these horses.” They are at risk every day they go out. “
Care has been taken to protect the health and safety of Belmont workers, as training continues throughout the epidemic despite the lack of nations. The effort brought everyone “a little closer” to Repol, and opened the door to racing in New York.
“Hopefully first the horse races, and then the Rangers, the Knicks, the Nets and the Islanders and the Mats and Yankees and football have taken control of the virus and are trying to stay ahead of it,” Repol said.
“We need something to route. With so many serious injuries in New York and New York, there will be a very good feeling about a sporting event in New York that is going to be different than the opening of a sport in general. “