Day At The Track

Bob Roesch making himself right at home

06:14 AM 09 Feb 2012 NZDT
Comment (...) Tweet Share Email Print
James Kennedy
James Kennedy

Bob Roesch (pronounced Rush) got his first harness racing snapshot here at Cal Expo in last Saturday night's (February 4) opener, landing in the charmed enclosure with the odds-on pacing mare Wild About Eagle. The 48-year-old Ohio native was involved with riding horses as a youngster, but it wasn't until he was 18 that he discovered the world of harness racing.

“I was actually raised in Tennessee, but I returned to Ohio and took a job with my uncle Loyal Miller, who was a trainer at Toledo,” Roesch explained.

“Once I got the chance to jog a horse, I found it was addicting. About a year later, I went to work with Tom Marsh Jr. at Northfield and I learned quite a bit from him. Two years later I got my driving and training license.”

Bob’s first pacer was a mare named Misty Ides.

“The first time I raced her I couldn’t drive, because they had a rule at Northfield that provisional drivers couldn’t compete on a weekend. She needed the race and finished sixth, and then I waited an extra week so I could race her on a Wednesday and was able to drive. She won and paid $98.”

Roesch’s favorite trainee would be Becca Anne, a mare who won some 30 races under his care during a three-year period in the mid-1980s. In 2009 when his wife Holly had a job transfer to Pennsylvania, Bob had the opportunity to work with the outstanding Ron Burke barn.

“That was a great experience, getting the chance to be around some sensational horses like Won The West.”

Last spring, Holly once again found herself moving due to work, this time landing in Reno.

“We came down to the races here in September and realized I wanted to get involved in the game again. I knew Tony Succarotte from Michigan, and eventually I got myself a couple of horses, one of which was claimed away.”

Roesch guided Wild About Eagle to a dominating score to the delight of the chalk-players, and admits it felt good to win his first race in a couple of years.

“I’ve always kept my license current by driving here and there. I have to say I’m having a great time right now, the weather is terrific and I’ve had the pleasure to meet some really nice people.”


Putoneonnetformom, who made 1-2 look like a gift in the most recent clash for the top trotters on the grounds, tries to make it four in a row in Friday evening’s (February 10) $4,500 feature at Cal Expo.

Putoneonnetformom is going in peak form at the moment for owner/breeders Jeff, Gerald and Diana Cimini and trainer Rocky Stidham with James Kennedy once again handling the lines. He comes into this assignment with $133,000 on his card and a 1:57.2 standard that was established here last season.

The 8-year-old son of Trot For Joy kicked off his recent winning streak over a sloppy track on January 20, making every pole a winning one that evening with Kennedy. Dropping into an optional claiming a week later, he proved a punctual 4-5 choice that night after playing the role of stalker to the final bend.

In that last appearance, Putoneonnetformom did not disappoint those who took 50 cents on the dollar. Kennedy shot him right to the top, he carved out the fractions without challenge and reported to the wire with three lengths to spare in his second straight 1:57.4 mile. Rounding out the field are stable-mate Shelby County, Giles L S Hanover, Meringue, Franks Best and Carpathian Hooray.


Live racing resumes at Cal Expo on Friday (February 10) & Saturday (February 11) at 6:00 p.m. (PST). On every live card, Cal Expo offers free parking & free admission after 4:30 p.m. On Friday, Cal Expo offers Happy Hour from 4:00-7:00 p.m. on which Beer; Well Drinks & Wine are offered at $4 each, while a Burger with fries is offered at $5.

Cal Expo currently offers a reduced 15 percent takeout rate on all Pick 4’s (Thursday/Friday nights in partnership with the USTA Strategic Wagering Committee). For the next two Saturday nights, all Late Pick 4’s will come with a $10,000-guaranteed pool. Additionally, there will be a 0% takeout on successful Late Pick 4 tickets made at Cal Expo or at

In addition to both Pick 4’s at Cal Expo continuing to offer a reduced 15 percent takeout rate, beginning February 24, the Late Pick 4’s on Friday and Saturday will come with an increased $15,000-guaranteed gross pool.

Also starting that weekend, the Friday Late Pick 4 will offer a 0% takeout on all winning wagers made on track or at, while the Saturday Late Pick 4 will be broadcast on TVG.

by Mark RATZKY

Comment (...) Tweet Share Email Print

Read More News About...

Stallion Name

Next article: