A race riding legend in the Southwest, Cliff Berry is Set to retire at the end of 2015. (Photos by Eclipse Sportswire unless noted)
Cliff Berry, the all-time leading rider at Remington Park and Lone Star Park , recently Announced His intent to retire in December at the finding of Remington's season. Berry, Who is 52, has-been to jockey for 36 years. He has won over 4,400 races and $ 65.5 million as the leading rider at Remington fifteen times, at Lone Star Park and five times at Oaklawn Park two times.
Berry's father owned a few racehorses, and I Helped Cliff get a summer job at Midway Downs in Stroud, Okla., Between His junior and senior years of high school.
"A guy Taught me how to gallop. I cleaned a lot of stalls, and I started riding quarter horses. I made $ 75 a week, "Berry Said.
Berry never left His summer job. In His early years of riding, I Went back and forth Between Quarter Horses and Thoroughbreds. In the mid-1990s, I Settled on just riding at Louisiana Downs Thoroughbreds, and That Is When His career Took off. Then I became a Regular rider in the Arkansas / Texas / Oklahoma circuit.
"I struggled early in my career, so I'm very appreciative of what I got done," I Said. "I work hard and try to be consistent."
Berry Said That since His early years at Louisiana Downs Were difficult, one of His favorite moments of His career is winning the Super Derby, the richest race at the track, in 2007 on Going Ballistic.
"It was nice to return and do well," Berry Said.
Another one of Berry's biggest accomplishments as a jockey meat on Dec. 10, 2010, When He won all seven of His mounts. Only three other jockeys Have gone seven for seven on one card without a loss. This big meat day after I won five races the night before.
BERRY WINS WITH THE HANDICAP WIN WILLY OAKLAWN
Winning the Grade 2 Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park on Win Willy in 2009 is another favorite memory.
However, Berry has difficulty picking a favorite horse.
"They All have different personalities, I Said. "From horses to claim stakes horses. You get them and you get along With them well. Picking a favorite is like picking a favorite kid. "
Berry's younger are graduates in May. After That, Berry and his wife plan to move to His wife's hometown in Louisiana Where His older son is living.
"We're going to build a house," I said "I have a lot of interests. I like to work on old cars. I enjoy playing music. May we go to the beach. "
"I'll miss the excitement of riding races and winning races. And I'll miss my friends. I've made a lot of very good friends in my career, "Berry Said. "I've had a lot of fun. I'm glad I got to do as much as I did. But it's time to do something else while I'm still young and healthy. I do not want to end my career just hanging on. "
Berry is the only jockey riding WHO has-been at Remington Park since the track opened in 1988.
ABOARD PROMISE ME SILVER BERRY
Photo by Coady Photography
Remington, Which opened last weekend, is celebrating "A Berry Special Season" with promotions to honor the rider's final season. Fans Have the opportunity to win cash prizes each time Berry wins a race. Additionally, guests will track all Receive a prize each time Berry posts three or more race victories on one card. Remington will host "Cliff Berry Night" on Saturday, Dec. 12. The season, and Berry's career, Concludes the following day.
"I was surprised They are doing all that," Berry Said. "It's a little bit overwhelming, but it will be fun."