Hartman Scores Career Victory 1,500
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Contact: Kevin Kilroy
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Hartman Scores Career Victory 1,500
Heady trainer takes advantage of the MTO list to reach milestone on a rainy day at Fair Grounds
New Orleans (February 4, 2022) – On a cold and wet Friday at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, Larry J. Romero’s Ekati’s Verve drew in off the main track only list in an off the turf, conditioned $15,000 (nw3) claiming route, and rewarded trainer Chris Hartman with career victory number 1,500. Orlando Mojica was aboard the 1.30 favorite. Assistant trainer Marlon Ortiz represented Hartman in the Fair Grounds winner’s circle.
The son of Stan Hartman, who remains an active trainer in Arizona, young Chris could see Turf Paradise out his classroom window. He learned his trade early on and knew since grade school what he wanted to do with his life. Starting out as a trainer at Turf Paradise, Sunland Park, Zia, and Ruidoso Downs, 2013 Hartman ventured east to Remington Park and Prairie Meadows 2013 and career win 1,000 came in Iowa one year later. He won the training title in 2015 at Oaklawn Park, the same year he moved his base to Churchill Downs to take on the Kentucky circuit. In 2017, Hartman began wintering at Fair Grounds and he currently splits his stable between New Orleans and Oaklawn. A 21% career winner, Hartman is winning races at nearly a 30% clip at the current Fair Grounds’ stand (16 for 56).
“When I started out I never thought we’d get to 1,500 wins, but here we are,” Hartman said. First I want to thank my wife Hillary and my kids Lukas (29) and Jacque (27). We’ve driven the kids all over America. It’s not just you, it’s the kids. They’ve worked in the barn too. They’re all part of it. It’s a family affair. My brothers Alex and Phil and sister Sarha have been there throughout too. It’s definitely a moment.”
Steadily finishing in the top 100 in wins and earnings since 2006, Hartman enjoyed his finest season by purse earnings in 2021 with $2,932,625.
“Joe Davis is the client I’ve won the most races for over the years,” Hartman said. “I’ve had horses with him for 20 years now. He gives me carte blanche on whatever I need with the money we have to spend.”
Hartman’s top earner is the multiple graded stakes winning sprint Alsvid ($1,372,815). He ran Necker Island in the 2020 Kentucky Derby and his Elle Z is currently one of the top female turf sprinters in the country. Hartman has proven he can train a good horse, but he is best known for his eye for the claim, and winning races at all class levels.
“You always want better horses, but we do a good job at keeping a balanced shedrow,” Hartman said. “Everything I do is an extension of my dad. You pick up things as you go along. I like to think we help horses improve themselves. It’s also picking the right horses when you’re claiming them. That is just as important. We try to be selective when we are claiming or buying horses. More than anything else just trying to keep balanced and get as much bang for our buck wherever we can whether, claiming or purchasing.”
Jockey Mitchell Murrill, with whom Hartman has enjoyed much success in recent years, enters Saturday’s action at Fair Grounds two wins away from 1,000 in his career.
About Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots
Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, one of the nation’s oldest racetracks, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, LA, Fair Grounds, which is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN), also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and 15 off-track betting parlors throughout Southeast Louisiana. The 150th Thoroughbred Racing Season – highlighted by the 109th running of the Louisiana Derby – will run from November 25, 2021 through March 27, 2022. More information is available online at www.fairgroundsracecourse.com.