Training Horses with Rod Cone

Oct 11,2018 Lisa V


Rod Cone is a trainer here at Century Downs Racetrack and Casino who has been coming to the racetrack since he was four years old. Cone started off shoeing horses, which he continued to do for about fifty years, and then went into training horses in the late 1980s.

On how he started getting into horse racing, Cone explained, “My grandfather was a blacksmith and my father took me to the track for the first time when I was four years old and I never quit coming after that.”

Over the years Cone has raced in many different places. Cone said, “I’ve raced in California, Upstate New York, Ohio, Louisiana, the list goes on.”

Not only can Rod Cone be found at the racetrack, but so can his two step sons. “One of my step sons is a veterinarian at the track and the other is a trainer here. My wife also trained horses up until a few years ago so there’s been lots of family involved.”

When asked about how he overcomes the hurdles of the snowy weather conditions as of late, Cone said, “We grin and bare it. We don’t have any other choice. There’s places that have it a lot worse than us and the horses don’t mind the cold as long as they’re out of the wind and have lots to eat.”

“The weather is mostly a problem for the jockeys. Us trainers can saddle our horse and get back inside and warm up but the jockeys have to sit out there in their thin clothes until the race is over,” Cone said.

Cone is optimistic about the future of horse racing in Canada and in the province of Alberta. “We’re so lucky here that we’ve gotten new tracks here in Alberta. We’re going to have some of the best racing in Canada once Century Mile is up and running up in Leduc,” Cone said.

We would like to thank Cone for all of his dedication and hard work here at the racetrack. For more details on Rod Cone, head on over to Century Downs’ YouTube channel or Facebook page (@CenturyDowns) for the full video on this story.


Join us on Thursday, October 25 every half hour from 6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. for your chance to win your share of $10,000! A lucky winner of $250 in slot play will be drawn at 6 p.m., 6:30 p.m., 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. At 8 p.m. a lucky winner of $1,500 cash will be drawn. At 8:30 p.m. the grand prize winner of $7,500 cash will be drawn. Must be present to win. If there is no winner in any of the draws, another winner will be drawn until one is found. Start earning your ballots by swiping your Winners’ Zone card, winning jackpots and dining in the Mid City Grill for your chance to win! Must present a Winners’ Zone card and valid photo ID to redeem prizing.

Join us for our Spooktacular Events on the last day of Thoroughbred racing on October 28 for a spectacular family fun-filled day! We’ll be having spooky special guests, face painters, a candy scramble, a pumpkin carving contest and a pick-a-pumpkin pumpkin patch (first come, first served by donation to Prairie Sky, Equine Assisted Therapy)

See you at Century Downs!