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Scot Schindler at North Dakota Horse Park

September 2, 2004     E-mail this page to a friend!

By Ryan Roshau, NDHP Website

As Scot Schindler organized his tack for an upcoming day at the races he smiled when he talked about his success at the new Fargo race track. "It's better to be a big fish in a little pond than a small fish in a bigger pond."

Schindler led the jockey's standings in 2003 with 30 wins and he's leading the pack this year as well. To put it mildly, Schindler has been a shark the past two years at the Horse Park and when the money is on the line, he goes into a feeding frenzy. "Winning, that's what makes it all worth it," Schindler says. "You get that adrenaline rush and it's hard to go to sleep afterwards."

Schindler has been experiencing that thrill for 20 years since he started riding at Wells County Downs in his home town of Fessenden, North Dakota. At a young age, he learned the trade from his older brother Wayne and he knew that was his calling. "I watched my brother and when simulcasting first came out, I would just sit and watch all the races from California and see what those guys were doing."

Before long, the lessons Schindler learned were reaping rewards on the track. He's raced primarily in the upper midwest and spends his spring and summer at Canterbury Downs in Shakopee, MN. "It's a lot more competitive down there," Schindler says, "It's hard to get good
mounts. I'm riding horses up here that I wouldn't be riding down there."

But here in Fargo, Schindler is "the go-to guy" for many trainers. Schindler's ability to pilot both thoroughbreds and quarter horses into the winners circle makes him a hot commodity. "Up here, I have an opportunity to ride some of the better horses." And since the better horses usually win, it's no wonder Schindler is enjoying the ride. "I like it up here, the track is nice and the people are great," Schindler says, "It's like coming back home."