Welcome to our new feature, “A Day In The Life.” We’ll spend a few minutes with some of the many wonderful Herringswell folks who keep the wheels turning on a daily basis. To kick things off, we’d like you to meet Lisa Conway.
In the seven years that Lisa Conway has been with Herringswell Stables, she’s looked after some of the top runners in Graham’s care. Animal Kingdom, Ring Weekend and current barn star Miss Temple City have all flourished thanks to Lisa’s dedication.
The Delaware native – who still lives in her childhood home – has actually been a Fair Hill fixture since 1984. She began her career in racing with Mike and Sally Goswell, now managers of the training center, and then spent several years working for retired trainer Billy Entenmann before joining Herringswell.
“I worked in a pizza parlor for two weeks before I started grooming horses,” she said. “I got fired from that job because I wasn’t measuring things. I’d just throw toppings on and say ‘That looks good.'”
As a groom, however, it’s Lisa’s unerring attention to detail and rapport with her horses that sets her apart. Grade 1 winner Ring Weekend has never been an easy sort, but Lisa has always instinctively known exactly what makes the gelding tick, and they get on famously. Running the son of Tapit in the 2014 Preakness was a highlight she won’t forget.
What does she love most about her job? “Hands on the horses. I love going to the races. After spending so much time with the horse, you want to be there to watch him run.”
These days, she’s charged with the care of recent arrival Golden Sabre, Faufiler (IRE), Miss Temple City and Messi (GER). Graded stakes winner Messi also ranks high on her list of all-time favorites. Kind and easygoing, he’s always got his head out of his stall, eager for a visit or a peppermint. Lisa can’t resist the opportunity for a quick chat or nose-rub as she goes about her morning.
“If this horse were a man,” she smiled, “I’d have to marry him.”
And if Messi could talk, we’re sure he’d say the same.
Below, Lisa Conway with Miss Temple City, winner of Keeneland’s Grade 1 Maker’s 46 Mile Stakes.