‘There Was None Like Henry’: Popular Trainer Moreno Dies At 90

Henry Moreno, a California training icon in a career that began more than half a century ago, died 12:25 a.m. Sunday following a lengthy battle with dementia at The Kensington care facility in Sierra Madre.

He was 90 years old.

Immensely popular among his peers, Moreno was born in Corona, grew up on his father’s quarter horse ranch, eventually beginning as a quarter horse trainer before switching to Thoroughbreds in the early 1960s.

He conditioned Chilean import Tizna who captured seven Santa Anita added money events, often competing against males. In the 1993 Vanity Stakes, he saddled Re Toss to upset Eclipse Award winner Paseana, 28 years after he won the race the first of three times. Moreno also won multiple stakes with Irish-bred Sangue, including the Grade I Matriarch in 1983. His last stakes winner was California-bred Spud Spivens.

Moreno, who saw combat while serving seven months in the Army during the Korean War, reaching the rank of Master Sergeant, also developed Sam Who into a top sprinter after bringing him back from near-death in 1989. Sam Who set the Hollywood Park record of 1:08 for six furlongs in 1989 and placed in six of seven stakes.

“There was none like Henry before or none like him after,” said Lance Hellum, Moreno’s assistant for four years until his retirement from training in 2016. “I’m in tears. He came to rescue me when I was in trouble. He was like a father to me.”

Said one trainer of Moreno’s unyielding generosity: “He probably loaned more money to more people at the race track and never got it back.”

Said his daughter, Elizabeth: “He was fine up until the very end when he spiraled the last 36 hours,” adding that services are pending.

“Henry was a staple of California racing,” said fellow trainer John Sadler.

“He was one of the men who built our game.” Said Henry’s nephew, Bob Moreno, a long time racing official in Southern California: “Nobody loved racing at Santa Anita more than Henry, believe me.”

And this, from Santa Anita morning line maker Jon White: “Tizna holds the record for most weight carried by a filly or mare in Santa Anita history, 132 pounds, when she won the 1976 San Gorgonio Handicap (now Robert J. Frankel Stakes). Henry was very proud of that.”

The post ‘There Was None Like Henry’: Popular Trainer Moreno Dies At 90 appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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