Troy Schooley, 34
E 38th Street and Third Avenue.
Tue Apr 6 2010
Photograph: Jay Muhlin
What are you up to? Just goin' for a walk. Later tonight I'll be goin' to Madison Square Garden to see Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck.
I would have pegged you as more of a Metallica fan. [Laughs] That too. I listen to everything: Ozzy, Black Label Society, Metallica... I'm very diverse.
Where are you from? Kentucky. I'm here for a few months racin' at the Meadowlands. I'm a horse trainer—third generation.
Do retired racehorses still go to the glue factory? Not really as much. They don't make dog food out of 'em anymore in this country. There's programs where you can donate your horses and they become riding horses...[or] they go to the Amish and pull buggies when they don't make it here.
How long have you been training horses? Oh, gee. Uh. I was going to the track with Mom and Dad when I was still in a baby seat. It got so tedious that when I turned 15 I was ready to do something different for awhile. 'Cause it's an everyday thing: Doesn't matter if it's Sunday or Christmas, the horses still want to get fed.
How dare they! Yeah, right? I took about eight years off—I got certified to work on boats and do enough construction to build my mom and dad's house. Things like that. But then I came back to this.
Do you smell like horse all the time? [Laughs] Well, I bathe frequently so I would hope not. When you're around it all the time, you really don't think of it. I'm sure hog farmers are the same way.
More from Troy
"New York is just amazing, 'cause there are maybe 8 million people in my state and here they're all in one city. It's amazing how people can live on top of each other and still function. Just totally amazing."
"The last couple years I've been home a total of two weeks. Now I've got to where I have friends all over the country."
"The only real racing superstitions I've got are: You don't eat peanuts on race day because that's all you'll make, is peanuts. And, you don't give the horses a haircut on race day. I'm not real sure why, but I was always told that, and I've seen people that have had an accident and they come back to the barn and say, 'I knew I shouldn't have clipped that horse's mane today.' Hearin' 'em say that, I figure there must be some kinda reason for it."