Interview With Storm Control's Owner Steve Schlachter
He's been in the business for over 35 years....and now he owns one of the top greyhounds in the entire country.
Steve Schlachter, owner of Storm Control, will look to win the inaugural Daytona 550 National Championship this Saturday at the Daytona Beach Kennel Club. Before the big race, Steve took some time for BetAmerica to talk about his superstar racer, his career and what a National Championship would mean to him and his team.PBJason: Congratulations Steve on Storm Control getting an invite to the inaugural Daytona 550 National Championship! How did you find out that Storm was going to be a part of the field?
Steve Schlachter: This is a funny story!! I was in Florida at my vacation home when the invites went out. Well the UGR invite went to my house in Connecticut and I never knew it. I received an e-mail while in Florida from the UGR team asking if I had received any mail from them. No, why do you ask!! So I received it via email and when I got home the formal invitation was there. I think UGR was wondering if I was coming or not.
PBJason: I have to tell you Steve….the proudest moment I’ve had in my young career as a columnist for BetAmerica was being able to announce that Storm would be in the big race on “The Backstretch Show.” Were you able to listen in that night?
Steve Schlachter: Yes, I listened to the show and it was a very nice presentation of the greyhounds that were invited. It is so nice to see people like you that have a passion for the sport and your efforts go unnoticed. I think tracks are finding out that promotions do work and people will come if they are treated right by the tracks. (ex. $1.00 beer nights, cash giveaways, etc). So I thank you for your part in helping us.
PBJason: Storm Control is part of a litter that includes such greats as Ghost Buster, Juggernaut & Submariner. Is this the best litter you have ever had as an owner?
Steve Schlachter: This litter currently has 104 wins in a litter of 7 pups and they are young at 2 3/4 yrs of age. It is one of my best litters especially putting up those numbers no matter where the track is. It takes a lot to get that many wins and I am thankful to the kennel owners and trainers that run my dogs. Without them, we wouldn't be talking right now. I will give "Storm" another rest after the January 24th Daytona 550. I find that they come back fresher and run better over a longer period of time with extended rest during the duration of their racing time.
PBJason: Did you ever think in your career as an owner that one of your greyhounds would have a chance at winning the “Super Bowl of Palm Beach” He’s My Man Classic and a National Championship in back to back weekends?
Steve Schlachter: You know, we all try to achieve that with our greyhounds. At my age, Stakes Racing is what I like, but you need a "Storm" in order to compete. They are hard to come by as the numbers are less which implies people are raising less therefore they are only breeding their best because the industry has lost tracks. So I am enjoying the ride over this upcoming 2 weekends with him, as a greyhound's racing life is short.
PBJason: Have you had a chance to see any of the other invitees in person or online?
Steve Schlachter: I watch a lot of races at tracks following the bloodlines of those greyhounds performing well. I don't bet my Greyhounds as I don't want to be paid for them twice. LOL!! So I have seen all of the invitee's on the Internet.
PBJason: What do you think Storm has to do to be able to win the Daytona 550?
Steve Schlachter: He has to be on the lead as he will not come and get you. The track is longer than Palm Beach, so he has to stay somewhat off the rail. If he runs the lure mid-track and can get the lead I feel we can make a good showing. Of all the dogs, I feel post position is most critical for a successful run. We need the inside hole. I feel the stronger dogs have a much better chance of winning, but if you ain't in it you can't win it, so we will give our best.
PBJason: Finally Steve, what would it mean for you to bring a National Championship home to your Kennel and the Palm Beach Kennel Club?
Steve Schlachter: I still get nervous every time one of my Greyhounds race. It's just the competitive nature of us that race. If I was to win, it would be the "icing on the cake" of a long 35 year career competing.
PBJason: Thank you again Steve for answering our questions. Good luck on Saturday January 24th in the National Championship at The Daytona Beach Kennel Club!
Steve Schlachter: Thanks Jason for the well wishes. I just want to thank Daytona, Bet America, UGR and all the invitees making this event happen to showcase our greyhounds to the public from all across the country. Hopefully this pilot Bet America 550 sets a standard for future events to build on.
Storm Control was able to win the $50,000 He's My Man Classic this past Saturday in a sizzling winning time of 29.52 secs. He also drew the 2 box for the National Championship, giving "The Storm" a fantastic inside spot to break from.
The National Championship will be in Race 10, post time around 10:00 PM and can be seen right here on BetAmerica!
~All photos provided by PBKennelClub.com