08/17/2013 2:20PM

Former trainer Mark Couto dies at 61


Mark Couto, a former trainer who in recent years ran an equine shipping company out of Southern California, died Friday following a brief illiness at his home in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. He was 61.

Couto trained from 1980-1990 and won 137 races during that time. He most recently was the general manager of Air Equine Shipping Services.

He is the brother of Drew Couto, a former president of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders’ Association, as well as a former president of the Thoroughbred Owners of California.

In addition to his brother, Couto is survived by his wife, the former Renee DuPont, as well as a sister, Gail Zembsch.

Funeral services are pending.