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Training racehorses can be big business. Trainers have the primary responsibility for the care and conditioning of a horse, as well as its education, as it were. Trainers employ people to walk the horses, groom the horses, and ride the horses during regular workouts. If the trainer has several horses under his or her (or its) charge, the pecking order may include a level or two of middle management. On the non-barn side of the training establishment, a trainer is constantly promoting itself to the owner group, so as to acquire new horses, and to the race secretaries and the tracks, to arrange for the right races in which to enter their horses. In terms of the direct influence on any given horse, the term “trainer” may involve a number of employees of the barn.
Trainers, like theatrical agents for Hollywood stars, are paid a percentage of the winnings from the gig or race, as the case may be. Like good jockeys, good trainers have the discernment to select the best candidates to receive the attention, given that 90% of the outcome of a race is determined (at least in legend) by the horse. The mission of the trainer is to create the habits, strengths and skills in the horse so that its 90% contribution to the race outcome is always in the money.