Horsemanship, Hockey And Hold 'Em

Published: May 13, 2011 12:07 pm EDT

How many people can say that they have battled champion hockey players on the ice, champion poker pros on the felts, and tinkered with green trotters on the track?

It's not a common trifecta, but there is someone in the harness racing industry that has completed the rare triple: 26-year-old Charlottetown, PEI resident Stephen Quinn.

In an article by Nicholas Oakes in the Friday, May 13 edition of The Guardian explains that Quinn has gone heads up with the highly respected Ted Forrest, tangled with 2006 World Series of Poker Main Event winner Jamie Gold, and once bested Sidney Crosby for the points lead in a pee-wee hockey tournament.

“Someone said he's not a bad player now, but I’m not sure," Quinn said with a laugh in regard to Crosby. “It’s not that bad, though. He only made over $10 million playing hockey last year, while the last horse I drove paced in 2:04.1.”

Quinn has sent forth charges to compete in 425 harness races to date. The article explains that he likes the young horses and the action. “I like working around the two-year-olds and figuring them out and getting them geared out,” he said. “I don’t want to be bathing horses or spraying off jog carts. I want to be on the track.”

“He’s got a quick set of hands on him and gets along good with the young ones,” trainer Jason Hughes was quoted as saying. “Not to mention he’s great at getting the work into them. You know when you send one out on the track with him on the seat, it’s going to get legged up good.”

Quinn, who graduated UPEI with a business degree, was able to heads up with Forrest and Gold in the 2010 NBC National Heads-up Poker Championship after having gained entrance via an online qualifier.

(With files from The Guardian)