Born: May 27, 1951
Birthplace: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Family: wife Janet, sons Christopher and Benjamin
Most readily identified as the trainer of 2005 Arkansas Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes winner Afleet Alex, Ritchey has been riding horses since he was a small child, spending every weekend growing up at his aunt and uncle's farm near Pittsburgh. At age 18, he attended the Potomac Horse Center and eventually spent 18 months training with the U.S. Olympic Team for the Munich games before going on to ride steeplechase races before becoming a trainer in 1974.
Afleet Alex was a Grade 1 winner as a 2-year-old and runner-up in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile. During his winter at Oaklawn, he won the Mountain Valley Stakes in his seasonal debut, posting the fastest six furlongs of the meet equaling the stakes' record. He narrowly missed the Derby with a third-place finish and overcame nearly falling in the Preakness to win impressively.
Prior to Afleet Alex, Ritchey found success with 1999 Pennsylvania Derby winner Smart Guy and won back-to-back Maryland Million Classics with Docent in 2002-03. After Afleet Alex, Ritchey won the Mountain Valley again in 2006 with Urban Guy.
Five times Ritchey has led the trainers at Delaware Park, where in 2001 he set a meeting record with 87 wins. His recent stakes stars include Bon Jovi Girl, Everyday Heros, One Smokin' Lady, Alex's Vision and Eve Giselle, a two-time stakes winner in 2011.