After calling races for 33 years at Santa Anita, Trevor Denman has announced his retirement. He will not be present when the track begins its winter meeting on Dec. 26.
In a statement released by the track, Denman said: “I have come to the decision that it is time for me to kick back, relax and enjoy the rest of my life on my farm in Minnesota and do some travelling both throughout America and overseas. It is time to stop counting dollars and to start counting the stars.”
Denman will continue to call races at Del Mar.
Denman, 63, is a native of Durban, South Africa. He was hired at Santa Anita in 1983. Since Santa Anita opened in 1934, it has had four primary announcers: Joe Hernandez, Chic Anderson, Dave Johnson and Denman.
“We are not going to replace an icon of three decades in less than three weeks, nor are we going to try. Santa Anita will undertake a worldwide search to find the next voice of the Great Race Place for the next generation,” said Joe Morris, senior vice president for West Coast operations for the Stronach Group, the track’s operator.
John Sadler, who began training horses in 1979, called Denman “one of the greatest announcers of all-time and a fixture in Southern California.”
“His excellence and greatness you take for granted because he’s so good and we had him so long,” Sadler said. “He’s the consummate professional. I’m kind of in shock. They don’t get any better than him.”
Trainer Ron Ellis said: “What makes him so effective is he’s like an artist. He paints a picture for you. I could sit in the paddock and visually see the race with his call.”