When Richard Rettele wins a stakes race at Mount Pleasant Meadows, hardly anyone bats an eye. In fact, it’s usually expected.
When Rettele does it at River Downs, it makes the local news.
Then again, Rettele’s win aboard Fearles Fred in Tuesday’s $15,000 Queen City Dash Stakes was his first since turning 70 on Aug. 8. Even more impressive is the fact that he missed the track record for 350 yards by just .055 of a second. It was the second race in a row won by Rettele and Fearles Fred where the pair came within a fraction of a second of setting a new mark.
Rettele’s appearance alone garnered attention from the track, including an interview prior to the race with track announcer Pete Aiello and various promotional photos (for those of you with Facebook accounts).
The race, and its outcome, drew the attention of WCPO Channel 9 in Cincinnati, who did a feature on Rettele for its Wednesday evening news. Included in the piece is an interview with River Downs’ Director of Publicity John Engelhardt, the video of the race itself and clips of Rettele’s interview with Aiello.
To view the TV feature, along with a write-up on the channel’s website, click here.
Daily Racing Form reporter C.A. Shoemaker also did a story about Rettele’s 70th birthday and his continued success in the saddle. That story can be read here.
The Blood Horse put a story on its website Thursday about Rettele’s win, which can be read here.
The Associated Press has also gotten in on the story, with a video based largely on the footage provided by River Downs. I have been told the video was featured on the front page of Yahoo News.
I’m working on a story of my own about Rettele for the Midwest Thoroughbred magazine, so to avoid the risk of scooping myself, I’m going to let the above pieces do the talking for now.
However, I will go as far as to say I am a big admirer of his work, and he provided a fantastic interview when I spoke to him for the aforementioned article. Rettele is a class act and great at telling his fascinating story.