Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Photos from Toole's Training Center

Back in January I took a week to go down to Florida to visit my dad, who was racing at Gulfstream over the winter. At first he was given stalls at Calder, but when a section of the backstretch was forced to move from their barns into the temporary tents you may remember reading about, he decided it was safer to go somewhere else until some stalls at Gulfstream became available. "Somewhere else" ended up being Toole's Training Center, just outside of Ft. Lauderdale.

       Toole's was an interesting little place. The barn was basically a shack, but the stalls were spacious. The track was a 3/4 mile oval with ridiculously narrow turns, not a track suitable for workouts (and no one was dumb enough to work over it.) A few roosters ran around everywhere on the property, a few ponies lived in a paddock in the infield, turkey vultures showed up once in a while. It was unique to say the least. Not the greatest place in the world, but it beat the alternative.

      Fun fact: the owner told me that the place has match races for Quarter Horses once in a while. "They pay me, hand me a bag of money and tell me to give it to whoever wins." I wasn't there to see that in person, to my disappointment, but yeah. I thought that was kind of interesting.

       Anyways, here are a few photos I took at Toole's Training Center.

Rusty decoration on the barn

Crushin Hard out for a jog. The 2-horse starting gate can be seen

Our barn. Not the prettiest to look at, but it served it's purpose

The other barn. I don't remember who's horses were there, but they were also racing at Gulfstream

View down the stretch of the track. Very long, narrow track.

The Best Glacier looking outside from his stall

Bear's Gem out having a bath

        So that's Toole's Training Center. Not the greatest place in the world, but something a little different.


  1. "not the greatest place in the world". That's an understatement. I met John "Bud" Toole when a friend discovered my stolen horse boarded at this establishment. I contacted Toole & provided all documentation including the police reports & original Jockey Club papers on my missing horse. He told me to come on down & pick up my horse. While enroute, he sent me a text telling me that I owed him $100 a day for "protecting my property" for a total of $500 for 5 days. I was willing to pay it to get my horse back as well as back board owed by the thief. When I arrived, Toole told me that I could pay him, however, I couldn't have my horse nor could I see my horse. I ended up having to file court papers & against the signed order by the judge, the horse was moved.

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