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Trainer ‘Strike Rate’ tells the tale ...

Updated: Jan 1, 2022

Trainer ‘strike rate’ in thoroughbred (TB) racing is a key metric to follow …. A win requires close attention to detail in all stages of preparation. Much emphasis is placed on bloodlines, with the most prominent families fetching eye watering prices in the yearling sales. But the genetic potential of the equine cannot be realized to racing success without nutrition being a key consideration. The slightest margins are anticipated among well-bred equines making for an exciting sport as these TB’s race to the finish. But my own experience has seen how optimal nutrition can make an immense difference in the final furlong.

My obsession with nutrition began under the watchful eye of my father Dick McCormick. His experience as a rider and trainer is well documented. In 2000-2001, I had the opportunity to quantify this ‘differentiator’ on a sample of 50 high performance equines when I worked as the private equine veterinarian to H.R.H. Prince A Aziz Bin Fahad Bin A Aziz Al Saud. My goal was to support the horses to establish and maintain ideal blood counts. Focusing on optimal nutrition not only maximized the equines health and well-being but was critical to establishing and maintaining ideal blood counts and witnessing peak performance. Over 1 ¼ miles, the difference between an average and ‘ideal’ blood count can be as much as five lengths. The results of my research in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia provided validation of a life-long belief on the importance of nutrition and strengthened my resolve to produce a feeding protocol that would make an impact in thoroughbred racing and beyond.

With over 1,000 races won across the USA, including winning performances at Keenland,

Saratoga, Delaware, Santa Anita & Belmont Park, as well as the coveted 3 Training Titles

(Gulfstream Park 2003, Laurel Park 2003 & Monmouth Park 2003 for owner Mike Gill & trainer Mark Shuman) and multiple Grade I, Grade II & III wins, my feeding protocol has a proven track record of success. Recent festival wins at Royal Ascot (2020), Cheltenham (2021), Fairyhouse (2021) and The Curragh (2021) further validate the role of nutrition in peak performance using BELMONT products. Savvy trainers are seeing the benefits. Their own ‘strike rate’ tells the tale in real numbers …..

Congratulations to valued customer and trainer Pat Martin on another win last night with QUIET DESIRE (IRE) @ Dundalk Stadium.

Author: Dr. Richard. J. McCormick, M.V.B, Dip.Eq.St, M.R.C.V.S. Licensed Veterinarian (Kentucky, USA, Ireland & United Kingdom). Contact @ or

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