"It was a goal for me. Not that I was confident...to be honest, I was stressing for maybe 10 days. I couldn't wait for tomorrow, and the relief that I'd reached the goal."
Standardbred Canada announced the winners of the 2022 O’Brien Awards, honouring Canada’s best in harness racing over the past season, at its Black Tie Gala on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2023. It was the 34th edition of the O’Brien Awards, and Richard Moreau added a record 10th O’Brien trophy to his mantle with another Trainer of the Year title.
In 2022, Moreau topped the charts for all trainers in Canada with 330 wins and more than $5.2 million in purse earnings. He was the leading trainer of 2022 at Flamboro Downs, Georgian Downs and Woodbine Mohawk Park. Two of Moreau’s trainees also picked up O’Brien Awards — Gaines Hanover in the two-year-old trotting colt category and Fashion Frenzie in the Older Trotting Horse division.
Gaines Hanover won four of eight starts last season and bankrolled $493,851 in earnings en route to divisional honours. The son of Cantab Hall won the Champlain Stakes in September, but his biggest moment came when he captured the final of the Breeders Crown in October.
After winning the O'Brien Award for three-year-old colt trotters a year ago, Fashion Frenzie came back to win the O’Brien for older trotters. He won seven of nine starts and more than $226,000 in purses in his four-year-old season. Most of the victories for the son of Archangel were in Woodbine Mohawk Park’s Open Trot, with his notable stakes win coming at Georgian Downs where he won the Earl Rowe Memorial and set a new track record in the process.
The Quebec native and resident of Puslinch, Ont. took time after Saturday's Black Tie Gala to discuss one of the best seasons of his career, reflect on his decade of dominance and chime in on the challenges of retaining solid help in Canadian harness racing's current employment environment.
Moreau's interview with Standardbred Canada's Jeff Porchak and Brittney Mayotte appears below.