Horse Training and Rehab Facilities
The Kirkwood center operates out of the Springdale Racecourse. The facilities in Camden, South Carolina offer a mild winter climate, all of the amenities trainers and owners seek, plus the added Kirkwood benefit of customized training programs tailored to each individual horse. The personal attention pays off with well-prepared horses ready to perform all year long.
- 2 dirt tracks - 1 mile and 5/8 of a mile
- 7/8 mile turf breeze strip
- 2 mile European gallop
- Starting gate
- Numerous tracks and trails
- Turnout paddocks
Kirkwood Stables Staff
Kip started out in horseracing as a steeplechase jockey. He transitioned into training and 2-year-old sales by taking advantage of the policy of the late Marion DuPont Scott of providing several stalls at her Springdale Race Course property for fledgling trainers. Kip and Kirkwood Stables have seen success in consigning and training young horses, preparing them for the race track and beyond. Highlights include 3 Kentucky Oaks winners - Gal in a Ruckus, Keeper Hill and Plum Pretty - Breeders Cup Classic winner Alphabet Soup, Champion Sprinter Smoke Glacken, Breeders Cup Filly & Mare Turf winner Soaring Softly and numerous graded-stakes winners in the US and abroad. Previously, Kirkwood-consigned horses have topped sales at Calder Barretts, Keeneland and Tattersalls including the then-record $4.5 million Fusaichi Samurai. Kip continues to be hands-on with all of the horses that come through the Kirkwood Stables barns. His experience and expertise continue to bring success to Kirkwood Stables, the horses and all of their connections.
Helen Richards started riding horses at age 6 with her junior career in the hunter/jumper world. The switch to horseracing happened when Helen was attending the University of Miami and, in need of some spare cash, she became a hot walker for George Pool. Helen then transferred to the University of Kentucky where she galloped horses in the morning and attended classes in the afternoon. Helen finished up at the University of Arizona in their Race Track Industry program and rode races for 14 years. After marrying Kip, she galloped horses at Kirkwood and helps transition older horses into retirement. Helen helps facilitate the day-to-day running of Kirkwood Stables.
Patti Crosby joined Kirkwood Stables in the summer of 2010. A bookkeeper by trade, before her employment with Kirkwood, Patti worked in the construction industry (10 years) and in R&D pharmaceutical manufacturing (20 years). For Kirkwood, she is their Office Manager, responsible for day-to-day activities; i.e. accounting, assisting with the arrivals & departures of the horses, recordkeeping of required veterinary & blacksmith work. As PA to Kip Elser, Patti is responsible for maintaining good consumer & public relations and assuring that Kip is aware of and responsive to all inquiries; whether from owners, vendors, veterinarians or the general public.