OLDSMAR, Fla. (January 22, 2009) Jamie Ness, who in the week through January 20 has had ten wins and five second place finishes and three thirds third in twenty-four starts, is tied for leading trainer as of January 21, 2009. Ness attributes his success to both the horses already in his barn as well as his recent claims. “I make my living out of the claiming box,” says Ness of his success with newly acquired horses. “I do my homework and study the horses on and off the track, and I look at the trainers’ tendencies. I don’t have two-year-olds and I don’t have stakes horses. It’s a blue-collar barn so I need to know what I’ve got.”

Jamie Ness began training race horses in 2000 at Canterbury Park. He took his first trip to the winner’s circle with Blue Rocket in the last race on the meet’s last day. “I think they let me win it,” he laughed. He now spends his summer months living next to the race track that gave him his first victory and trains there in the Tampa Bay Downs off-season.

For the last two years, Ness has captured the training title at Tampa Bay Downs; in the 2007-2008 race meet, the 34-year-old native of Shakopee, MN haltered a record 68 victories and $959,710 in total purses here. Ness gained an interest in horse racing through both his father and grandfather. “My grandfather took me to the track when I was four years old, and I’ve been hooked ever since,” say Ness. He cites his greatest influence in the sport as his father, saying, “My father was a trainer, and I grew up in the summers going to tracks with him to work. Racing got into my blood at an early age. My father is a very good horseman and he showed me how to do it the hard way, without any big owners or big horses.” Ness has had great success with his “blue-collar” horses and though he keeps his barn open to many jockeys, he credits Daniel Centeno as his go-to rider of the moment. When he’s not at the barn – “which isn’t often!” he says, he plays basketball at local gyms.

Racing resumes tomorrow, January 23 with a ten race card; the Pick 6 carryover is $7,433.16, and the High 5 carryover is $4,211.23. The Silks Poker room is open daily from 12:30 PM through 12:30 AM, and The Downs Golf Practice Facility is open on Mondays from 10:00 AM through 10:00 PM and on Tuesdays through Sundays from 8:30 AM through 10:00 PM.