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Gale joins McIntosh

March 17, 2004

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Reunited and it feels so good! That's what Hall of Fame trainer Bob McIntosh told The Horseman about the recent addition of Bill Gale to his all-star staff at his farm in Windsor, Ont. McIntosh said he and Gale started in the harness business together in the 1970s and that he has "a lot of win pictures of us together on the walls of my home."

Gale, who dominated the driving ranks at Windsor Raceway and Hazel Park in the late 1970s and throughout the `80s, had been based on the Woodbine Entertainment Group for the past several years. However, it was an injury-plagued period as a number of racing accidents forced him to the sidelines.

The most serious injury occurred at Mohawk on Oct. 28, 1997, when Gale shattered the bones in his left leg. It took 18 months for him to return to the races, and then a month later he suffered a cracked pelvis in a spill at Windsor, which put him out of action for a short period again. A broken leg suffered in a training accident shortly after that caused Gale to miss nearly the entire 2000 season.

Gale stands 21st all-time with 6,322 career victories and 33rd with $41.4 million in purse earnings. However, the injuries have limited his drives and his stats show just 107 wins since 1997. Now 55, Gale and his wife, Janice, have relocated back to Windsor, where he now works as an assistant trainer for his longtime friend McIntosh.

"We were talking and it sounded as if he wanted to come back to Windsor," said McIntosh of Gale's decision. "We've been friends for 25 years. It worked out for him and good for me. He is a valuable addition to the staff. Anybody who has that much talent and experience to add, it helps."

For McIntosh, who was inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame in Goshen last year, some of his biggest victories have come with Gale in the sulky. In 1986, Gale drove the first of McIntosh's 13 Breeders Crown champions, scoring with Sunset Warrior in the 2-Year-Old Colt Pace. In 1988 and 1989 the pair teamed up at their home track of Windsor to win back-to-back Provincial Cups with Bond Street and Mystery Fund.
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