Reade Baker was born in Port Dalhousie, Ontario on April 30, 1947, and got his first taste of horse racing from his uncle, who took him to the races at Fort Erie when he was 14. Baker was sent to boarding school after he began skipping school to go to the races.
At age 18, Baker went to work for trainer Pete McCann as a groom, and later worked for Gil Rountree and Conn Smythe. Baker also worked as a jockey agent for six years beginning in 1976 before taking out his trainer's license in 1989, winning his first race in June of that year at Woodbine.
Baker trained Sovereign Award winning sprinter Fatal Bullet to a runner-up effort in the 2008 Breeders' Cup Sprint, and would win the Grade I Phoenix at Keeneland in 2009 with Fatal Bullet before running sixth in the Breeders' Cup Sprint that year.