Racehorse Owner Profile: Todd Fitch

by Katie Merritt

Owner Todd Fitch got his first taste of horse racing at Balmoral Park when he was about 10 years old. His dad would meet friends at the races and occasionally the young Fitch got to tag along. When he was 22, Todd moved to Phoenix, the place he still calls home, and began meeting his own friends at his new home track Turf Paradise. “We used to bet the horses,” he explained, “and I always said to them, ‘One day, I’m going to own one of those!’” He claimed his first horse, Pamela Denise, at Hollywood Park a few years later. Fitch, however, didn’t stop at just one. He now owns five racehorses outright, and varying percentages of 12 more.

Fitch has owned racehorses, initially under Val-U-Chem Inc. and more recently under Fitch Racing Stables, for the past 13 years. In that relatively short span of time, he has amassed over 125 victories. Though he occasionally purchases young horses at sales, most of his horses are acquired (and sometimes claimed) in claiming races. “With me, the horse racing business is kind of like the stock market,” he said. “I run my horses where they belong, where they can win. And I’m in a position where when I see a good opportunity, I do it. I’ve been very blessed, that’s what it boils down to,” he added with a smile.

Though he retired and sold his company, Val-U-Chem, three year ago, Fitch stays plenty busy keeping a watchful eye on his horses, all of which are in training with Robertino Diodoro, who has strings of horses at racetracks all over the country. “Diodoro has introduced me to a lot of opportunities. I ended up coming here to Canterbury Park with some horses, to Prairie Meadows, Southern California, Oaklawn Park, Keeneland.” For the first several years that he owned horses, Fitch primarily ran horses at Turf Paradise, but last week, he had horses running at three different tracks around the country on the same day. “It’s too bad I can’t be in three places at once!” he quipped.

Like most owners, watching his horses win is the most exciting part of ownership for Fitch, but he also enjoys the people that he’s met and gets to spend time with on a regular basis. “I’ve met so many great people. The partnerships and friendships that I’ve made being with Diodoro – they’re family now. And that’s the truth. Horsemen, horse people, they’re just so straight forward. There’s no fakeness. They’re just true people. Just hanging out with great friends and great people, having great partnerships in the industry, that’s what it’s about.”

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