"Simon Callaghan"

May 16, 2015 by Kate Weissmuller

Only a few weeks ago on May 2nd, American Pharoah flew past the finish line at Churchill Down in the 141th running of the Kentucky Derby.  Close behind American Pharoah was the impressive Firing Line trained by the young Simon Callaghan.  Since moving to America from Newmarket in December 2009, Simon Callaghan has proved himself as a top trainer in the competitive North American thoroughbred horse racing circuit. 

Simon Callaghan learned about training and the horse racing industry through his father Neville Callaghan, who is a top thoroughbred horseracing trainer in Newmarket, Great Britain.  Simon Callaghan was also born and raised in Newmarket, Great Britain, where he learned to train and care for horses.  In 2009, Simon Callaghan moved across the pond to sunny Southern California where he established his own training barn. 

Simon Callaghan quickly filled his barn with impressive stakes horses that helped build Callaghan’s winning reputation in America.  In 2011, Callaghan’s Dubawi Heights won multiple Grade 1 Stakes as well as established herself as a top West Coast filly and a top mare in the turf division.  That same year, Up In Time established herself as a leading sophomore turf filly also strengthening Callaghan’s reputation.  Callaghan’s success continued throughout the years with Belle Royale and Slim Shadey’s impressive races in 2012.  Belle Royale won the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes while Slim Shadey won the Grade 2 San Marcos Stakes in addition to the Grade 2 John Henry Turf Championship.  Other outstanding horses include Grade 3 Robert Frankel Stakes winner Qaraaba, Grade 2 Goldikova Stakes winner Rhythm of Light, Santa Anita Oaks winner Fashion Plate, and of course Firing Line. 

Simon Callaghan’s barn of talented horses, both young and older, proves Callaghan will continue to be tough completion for many years to come.  Simon Callaghan Racing is based out of Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California.  In addition to adding to his success in southern California, Callaghan hopes Firing Line will finish a few lengths ahead in the upcoming Preakness Stakes.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes

"Ian Wilkes"

April 8, 2015 by Kate Weissmuller

Currently ranked 13th on Blood-Horse’s list of top trainers, Ian Wilkes is climbing up the rankings to compete with some of the most well-known trainers for the title as best trainer of 2015.

Ian Wilkes was born almost fifty years ago on May 25, 1965 in Muswellbrook, New South Wales, Australia.  He was raised on a dairy farm, which taught him how to care for animals.  When he turned 16-years-old, Wilkes began working as an exercise rider and groom for Australian trainers Colin Hayes, Vic Thompson Jr., and Paul Sutherland.  In 1989, after exposure to the racing industry, Wilkes used a friend’s connection to move to the United States and work for trainer Carl Nafzger.  Under Nafzger, Wilkes galloped horses including champion Unbridled, winner of the 1990 Kentucky Derby and Breeders' Cup Classic.  Wilkes made a quick return to Australia, deciding to move back to the United States four years after his initial move.  Upon his return, Wilkes took the job as Nafzger’s assistant trainer.  Wilkes and Nafzger worked together for about thirteen successful years.  Then in 2005 and 2006, Nafzger condensed his operation and began the process of retirement.  One step was turning the majority of the Louisville barn over to Wilkes. 

Carl Nafzger and Ian Wilkes continued to work together producing the 2006 Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner and 2007 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense.  In addition to champion horses such as Unbridled and Street Sense, Wilkes trained horses such as Bearpath, Capt. Candyman Can, Miss Isella, Moonport, and Warrior's Reward.  His most recognized solo win was Fort Larned’s 2012 Breeders’ Cup Classic.  This year, according to Equibase, Wilkes has had 13 wins out of 121 starts.   His brother Wayne Wilkes is also a trainer in New South Wales where the Wilkes boys were born.       

Ian Wilkes continues to prove himself in the racing industry as he puts to work the skills he has acquired throughout the years.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes

"Kiaran McLaughlin"

March 8, 2015 by Kate Weissmuller

On November 15, 1960 in Lexington, Kentucky, Kiaran P. McLaughlin was born.  McLaughlin attended the University of Kentucky until he decided to drop out and pursue a career in the horse racing business.  First, McLaughlin became an assistant trainer for James Burchell, John Hennig, David Kassen, and then Tim Muckler.  His most influential teacher was D. Wayne Lukas, who he began working for in 1985.  With D. Wayne Lukas, McLaughlin was able to work with champions like Open Mind, Dynaformer, Carson City, and Salt Lake.  Seven years later, McLaughlin decided to change occupations and work as jockey Chris Antley’s agent. 

In November of 1998, McLaughlin changed his career back to thoroughbred training and signed with Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum in Dubai.  McLaughlin split his time between New York and Dubai, spending half a year in each location.  In New York, McLaughlin also trained horses for Sheik Mohammed and his brother Sheik Hamdan.  This partnership spanned ten years and saw McLaughlin achieve leading trainer at Dubai's Nad Al Sheba Racecourse in 1994-95, 1995–96, and 2002-03.

Upon his return to America in 2003, McLaughlin opened a public stable in New York where he trained for Darley and Shadwell Racing.  Some of his most successful horses include Shadwell's Jazil and Invasor.  Jazil won the 2006 Belmont Stakes, and Invasor won the ‘06 Breeders’ Cup Classic, as well as Horse of the Year honors, and the ’07 Dubai World Cup, among many other accomplishments.  McLaughlin has won races in the United States, Canada, Japan, and Dubai and has amassed an extensive list of major wins throughout an impressive career which shows no signs of slowing.

In 1998 McLaughlin faced a person setback when he was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.  Before long, and with the help of treatments, Kiaran was able to manage and resume his training responsibilities once again.  He currently resides in Garden City, Long Island, New York.  McLaughlin lives with his wife and two kids.  McLaughlin continues to train thoroughbred racehorses and find success among the top echelons of the sport. 

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes

"James P. Conway"

February 8, 2015 by Kate Weissmuller

Horse racing Hall of Fame trainer James P. Conway won over fifty different graded stakes races.  Many of these graded stakes were won multiple times.  This remarkable track record makes James P. Conway one of the greats of horse racing history.

James P. Conway was born on August 4, 1910.  Following World War II, around age 35, Conway worked a variety of backstretch jobs.  In 1946, Conway began his professional career as a thoroughbred race horse trainer.  Conway found great success at the start of his career while training horses for Ben Whitaker, a Dallas, Texas hotel owner.  His first stakes winner was Carolyn A.  In 1948 and 1953, Conway ran Whitaker’s Miss Request and Grecian Queen who both became American Champion Three-Year-Old Filly in their respective years.  Conway’s next Champion was Ada L. Rice’s Pucker Up, winner of the 1957 American Champion Older Female Horse.  (Photo Above: James P. Conway pictured far left)

Conway’s greatest success came with John Galbreath’s Darby Dan Farm during the years of 1962 to 1966.  With Darby Dan Farm, Conway won the Kentucky Derby, ran second in the Preakness Stakes, and won the Belmont Stakes with Chateaugay in 1963.  Chateaugay became the 1963 American Champion Three-Year-Old Male Horse.  Four other Conway horses ran in the Kentucky Derby, but Chateaugay was the only winner. 

James Conway switched gears and traded his partnership with Darby Dan Farm for a public stable in 1967.  Here, Conway worked for notable Maxwell Gluck’s Elmendorf Farm.  Later, on May 31, 1984, Jimmy Conway died at age seventy-three in Long Island, New York following a lengthy, serious illness.  Conway was inducted into the United States' National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1996. 

Throughout his incredible career, Conway trained forty-three stakes winners including five Champions.  Some of his significant horses were Bramalea, My Request, Prince Quest, Polylady, Tahitian King, Talent Show, and Verbatim.  Other notable races Conway won besides the Derby and Belmont include the Blue Grass Stakes, Diana Handicap, Haskell Invitational Handicap, Spinaway Stakes, Whitney Handicap, and Wood Memorial.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Ronald 'Ron' McAnally"

January 11, 2015 by Kate Weissmuller

Ronald “Ron” McAnally is one of the most honored and respected Hall of Fame trainers in North America.  He was born on July 11, 1932 in Covington, Kentucky.  When he was a young child, McAnally’s mother passed away, placing him and his siblings in an orphanage called the Covington Protestant Children's Home.  McAnally attended the local high school and served his mandatory years with the United States Air Force after his high school graduation.  After fulfilling his military service, McAnally studied electrical engineering at the University of Cincinnati for two years.

Horse racing entered McAnally’s life when he began working for his uncle, Reggie Cornell, at Rockingham Park in Salem, New Hampshire.  McAnally obtained his own training license in 1958, and started working at racetracks in California.  McAnally’s first win occurred at Hollywood Park, and was followed by his first stakes win at Santa Anita Park. 

McAnally may best be known for caring for the horses others might turn away from.  These horses include the horse Cassaleria, who had one eye, or Sea Cadet, who was without a tail.  His most successful story is that of Silver Ending, the horse McAnally purchased for $1,500 and trained into a stakes horse who won races such as the Arkansas Derby and Pegasus Handicap. 

The horse that gave McAnally the most fame and success was John Henry.  McAnally began training the relatively unsuccessful (at the time) four-year-old John Henry, in the early 1980s.  Under McAnally, John Henry won over half of his races earning over six million dollars.  As a result, John Henry won Horse of the Year twice and was inducted into the Hall of Fame.  Bayakoa and Paseana were also McAnally trainees and they won multiple Breeders’ Cup races. (Picture above of McAnally and John Henry)

McAnally has enjoyed many personal honors including the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Trainer a total of three times.  In addition, McAnally was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame.  McAnally is happily living with his wife and family in Tarzana, California.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Christophe Clement"

December 8, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller

On November 1, 1965 in Paris France, Christophe Clement was born into a long line of horsemen beginning with his grandfather who owned racehorses, then his father who was a successful French racehorse trainer.  Because of his father, Christophe grew up on his training farm in Chantilly, France.  Christophe’s brother, Nicholas Clement, trained the winner of the 1990 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe out of the barn in Chantilly. 

After Miguel Clement, Christophe’s father, passed away in 1978, trainer Alec Head brought Christophe to the races and morning workouts as well as to his breathtaking farm, Haras du Quesnay, teaching Christophe his knowledge of racing.  In addition to Alec Head, Francois Boutin helped start Christophe’s career.  They established a group to advise Christophe in his father’s footsteps. 

As a start, Christophe moved to the United States in 1986 and began working for Taylor Made Farm.  Soon after, Clement began working for Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey.  Two years after he moved to America, Christophe returned to Europe to work as an assistant to Luca Cumani in Newmarket, England.  Working with multiple trainers allowed Christophe to gain a broader perspective of different methods of training and styles of horsemanship. 

After finishing his job in England, Christophe came back to the United States and started his own stable.  Christophe won his first race at Belmont with the horse Spectaculaire, beginning a very successful career.  Soon after Christophe won two Grade II Stakes with the horses Passagere du Soir and Sardaniya.  Sardaniya was owned by His Highness the Aga Khan giving Clement a prestigious cliental.  Other talented horses that have been trained by Clement include Blu Tusmani, Danish, England's Legend, Flag Down, Gio Ponti, In Summation, Meribel, Naissance Royale, Revved Up, Royal Highness, Statesmanship, and Voodoo Dancer.  Christophe has won multiple graded stakes all around the world including the Queen Elizabeth II stakes, Beverly D., Del Mar Oaks, Frank E. Kilroe Mile, Man O’War Stakes, Arlington Million, and the Belmont Stakes with Tonalist in 2014.

In December of 2009, Clement won his 1,000th race at Hollywood Park.  He has won multiple Eclipse Awards including the award for Outstanding Trainer for 2011.  Christophe has been the leading trainer of meets at many different tracks around America.  Christophe continues to train out of a barn based in Florida.  While living in Paris and attending the University of Assas, Christophe met his wife Valerie.  They have two children together named Miguel and Charlotte who are carrying on the tradition of the Clement family name in horse racing.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"André Fabre"

November 10, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller

André Fabre was born on December 9, 1945 in Spain.  His father was a diplomat and their family lived a comfortable life in Europe.  Fabre attended a university and graduated with a law degree but decided to pursue a career in thoroughbred horse racing. 

To become acquainted with horses and the horse racing business, young Fabre worked in a stable as a groom in France.  After obtaining ground and behavioral understanding of the horses, Fabre was promoted to schooling rider.  Discovering a new passion for riding, Fabre worked hard, trained long hours, and made connections in the steeplechase business and soon became a prominent jump jockey.  During his career, Fabre won almost three hundred races.  The most important win of his career was the Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris. 

Fabre retired from steeple-chase riding to begin training jump horses.  After a short career, Fabre switched to training horses for the flat races.  This career spanned from 1987 and has continued on into the twenty-first century.  Fabre found success in the thoroughbred horse racing business, becoming one of the most successful trainers ever, due to his worldwide success.  Fabre trained for the wealthy and well-known Rothschilds family.  His success caught the attention of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (H.H. Sheikh Mohammed), the founder of Godolphin Racing.  H.H. Sheikh Mohammed sent Fabre a stock of yearlings to begin training.  Fabre’s training business was operated out of the beautiful Training Centre of Chantilly in France. They became one of Europe’s most powerful owner and trainer teams, producing winners of all types. 

Fabre’s horses have won races in both Europe and North America.  Fabre’s most famous North American wins to date are the Breeders' Cup Classic with Arcangues in1993, the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf with Banks Hill in 2001, and Breeders' Cup Turf twice with In the Wings in 1990 and Shirocco in 2005. 

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Mark Casse"

October 9, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller

Inspired and encouraged by his father Norman Casse, Mark Casse fell in love with thoroughbred horse racing and breeding at the budding age of twelve.  Casse was born on February 14, 1961 in Indianapolis, Indiana where his father operated a successful breeding business.  The Casse family and business relocated to Ocala, Florida where Mark grew up on his father’s Cardinal Hill Farm. 

Mark’s first job was mucking stalls at his father's barn in Indiana, where he learned horsemanship and responsibility.  This simple interactive teaching blossomed into the knowledge of how to manage Cardinal Hill Farm.  At age 18, Mark obtained his trainers license and won his first race at Keeneland Race Course in 1979.  In addition to training and barn managing, Mark became an outstanding bloodstock specialist. 

Mark Casse took the title for the 1988 Churchill Downs Spring Meet in addition to numerous titles at Turfway Park throughout this career.  Mark dominated in the United States, which inspired his expansion to Woodbine racetrack in Toronto, Canada.  Harry Mangurian offered Casse the opportunity to train and manage his Mockingbird Farm, which included approximately 900 horses ranging in age, experience, and talent.  Mark’s strength developed into preparing young horses for sales and the races and selling them for profit.

Once a well-developed businessman, Mark established his own Moonshadow Farm in Ocala, Florida where horses were brought in from a prestigious clientele including Eugene Melnyk, Bob Wilson, Charles LaLoggia, and Bill Farish.  Bill Farish’s Woodford Racing LLC allowed for Mark’s purchases of promising yearlings with his keen eye and experience.  Mark’s most notable horses include Clearly Foxy, Kimchi, Legal Move, Lickety Lemon, Melnyk’s Marchfield, Nite in Rome, Sealy Hill, Sprung and Silky Smooth, Seaside Retreat, and End Sweep.  Mark’s most famous stories are of End Sweep and Seaside Retreat.  Mark Casse sold End Sweep for $20 million and ran Seaside Retreat in the Kentucky Derby making both himself and his horses known worldwide. 

Currently, Mark spends time in both Toronto and Ocala.  His wife, Tina, helps with the operation of Moonshadow Farm. Also in the family, Justin Casse, a former assistant to Mark, is a bloodstock agent and the owner of Casse Sales, LLC.  Additionally, Mark has seven children, including his son, Norman Casse, who is following in Mark's footsteps and works under him as an assistant trainer continuing the family tradition. 

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Chad C. Brown"

August 10, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller

At only 35 years of age, thoroughbred racehorse trainer Chad C. Brown has accomplished more in his short career than most trainers could ever dream of achieving.  Brown was born on December, 18, 1978 and raised in Mechanicville, New York near Saratoga Springs.  The close proximity allowed for many summers to be spent at Saratoga Race Course.  Brown began working with horses during high school as an assistant to Paul Kelley.  Kelley was a Standardbred trainer located at Saratoga Raceway. This passion for horses and a high GPA landed Chad at the prestigious Cornell University in New York where he studied veterinary science. 

During summer breaks, Brown worked for Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey, which expanded his knowledge in the training and managing field of racing.  After graduation, Brown made the decision to continue training horses and kept his job in McGaughey’s barn.  After some time passed, Chad decided to take a veterinary internship, and upon completion he took a different job for Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel in 2002.  Frankel was taking time off of work for an emergency regarding his dog, allowing Brown to step in and saddle Ginger Punch to win the Breeders’ Cup Distaff. 

After five years of loyalty and growth in Frankel’s barn, Brown began his own training barn.  Brown’s solo career took off after winning his first race at Saratoga Race Course with Star Player.  It was the first race of Saratoga opening day.  Additionally, Brown’s first Breeders' Cup race was won by a nose with Maram in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf in 2008.  Brown’s success continued into the following years through Brown-trained Stacelita, who was his first champion, and when he finished 2011 as 16th among trainers in the nation.  In the succeeding year, Brown took champion horse Zagora first to the finish line in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf. 

In 2013, Chad Brown started his first Kentucky Derby horse, Normandy Invasion.  Finishing an impressive 4th, Brown was recognized as a rising star and considered one of the best of the best in thoroughbred horse racing.  With time on their side, Chad and the horses in Brown’s barn have a bright future ahead of them.  

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Michael Ernest Millerick"

July 8, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller
 
Racing Hall of Fame trainer Michael Ernest Millerick is best known for his success along the West Coast circuit, and also his unique nickname “Buster.”   Buster was born and raised in Petaluma, California on his cousin’s ranch - now the Larson Family Winery.  This ranch was located in nearby Sonoma Valley and raised multiple types of horses.  The Millerick family had the largest rodeo stock line in California and organized many rodeos.  In addition, two of Buster’s uncles, Jack and George, trained thoroughbred racehorses.  They took Buster under their wing and taught him about the business. 

Buster got his first job soon after the opening of Santa Anita Park in 1934.  He first conditioned horses for Charles Howard, and worked as an assistant to Tom Smith while Seabiscuit was under Smith’s training.  Millerick scored his first major win for Charles Howard’s barn while in his twenties with Yankee Dandy in the Breeders’ Champion Stakes.  Also in 1940, Buster began winning titles at Santa Anita Park, Hollywood Park, and Del Mar. 

As Millerick’s career continued, more and more prestigious owners put their horses under his training, creating a barn filled with champions.  Some of these horses include Countless Fleet, Count of Honor, Fleet Nasrullah, George Lewis, Kissin’ George, Mira Femme, and of course Native Diver.  Native Diver won 34 stake races and raced until the age of eight.  During his long career, Native Diver won three consecutive Hollywood Gold Cups, the San Carlos Handicap, the Los Angeles Handicap, and set a track record in the Del Mar Handicap.  Furthermore, Native Diver was the first California-bred that earned one million dollars from racing.  Native Diver’s impressive career was recognized, and as a result he was inducted into Racing’s Hall of Fame in 1978. 

Buster Millerick’s success included winning 1,886 races including the Bing Crosby Handicap, Del Mar Futurity, Hollywood Derby, Californian, Malibu Stakes, Milady Handicap, and the Vanity Handicap.  After a career that spanned over half a century, Buster retired from thoroughbred horse racing in 1984.  At this time, Millerick was ranked second at Del Mar, fourth at Hollywood Park, and fifth at Santa Anita for all time wins.  Two years after his retirement, Buster fell ill and passed away at eighty years of age.  His impressive career allowed Buster Millerick to be inducted into the Racing’s Hall of Fame in 2010.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Harry Allen Jerkens"

June 10, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller

On Saturday, June 7, 2014, the flashy Tonalist upset the field to win the 146th running of the Belmont Stakes.  The chance for a Triple Crown winner was kissed goodbye as Tonalist opened his stride and took over the lead.  Although Tonalist was an unfortunate upset for those hoping for a Triple Crown, the king of upsets is thoroughbred horse trainer Harry Allen Jerkens, also known as the “Giant Killer.”

Jerkens was given his nickname by upsetting horses such as Secretariat, Cicada, Cougar II, Forego, Riva Ridge, and Kelso all on multiple occasions.  Jerkens was born on April 21, 1929 in Islip, Long Island, New York into a horse family.  H. Allen’s father owned and managed a riding academy in Long Island.  His father was an ex-Austrian cavalry captain who enjoyed fixing “broken” horses.  At the riding academy, Jerkens love for horse racing was discovered.  Jerkens’ original dream was to become a jockey, but in 1950 he took out his trainers license and won his first race with the horse Populace on the 4th of July at Aqueduct. 

Approximately 12 years after his first win, Jerkens began training for Jack Dreyfus Jr., a Wall Street investor, and his barn Hobeau Stable.  Under Jerkens’ training, Hobeau Stable produced more high-profile upsets than likely any other barn in racing.  Hobeau Stable’s horse Beau Purple upset Kelso on three separate occasions between 1962 and 1963.  In addition, Jerkens trained Onion and Prove Out which resulted in the defeat of Secretariat in both the Whitney and the Woodward.  Later in 1994, Jerkens’ champion horse was discovered when he began training a filly that grew into the Eclipse Award-winning mare Sky Beauty.  Other talented and proven horses under Jerkens training were Believe the Queen, Devil His Due, Dixie Flag, Kelly Kip, Missy’s Mirage, November Snow, and Shine Again. 

To honor his great achievements in thoroughbred horse training, Jerkens received the Eclipse Award as outstanding North American trainer in 1973.  Then two years later, in 1975, Allen was induced into Racing’s Hall of Fame.  At only 45 years old at the time of induction, Jerkens became the youngest trainer in the Hall of Fame.  Jerkens is still actively training and producing talented, well-trained horses with the hope of causing more upsets.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Art Sherman"

May 8, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller

On May 3rd, 2014 in Louisville, Kentucky on a sunny spring day, Art Sherman made history for being the oldest trainer to win the Kentucky Derby.  His stunning chestnut, California Chrome, flew fast the finish lines with the humorous green and purple donkey silks on his jockey’s back.   

Art Sherman was born on February 19, 1939 in Brooklyn, New York.  At the age of fourteen, Art moved to Southern California.  Two years later, Art began working as a stable-hand for a trainer named Rex Ellsworth.  s horses as an exercise rider.  One of those horses was the famous Swaps.  After qualifying to race in the 1955 Kentucky Derby, Swaps traveled to Churchill Downs by train with Art and the rest of the Ellsworth team.  Always the dedicated horseman, Sherman slept in the boxcar with Swaps during the long journey.  Swaps went on to win the Derby with Art cheering him on. 

In 1957, Art decided he was ready for a career change.  Sherman took out his jockey’s license at Hollywood Park in hope of maybe winning his own Kentucky Derby one day.  Art’s first win was at Caliente in the same year.  During his career, Art rode in California, the Midwest, and Florida.  After about 21 years of racing, Art ended his career as a jockey.  Immediately after, Art became an assistant trainer to Paul Guidotti.  For a short period of time after working as an assistant trainer, Art was a racing official in Northern California.  Then in 1980, Sherman received his trainer’s license and established his barn at Golden Gate in Northern California.  Almost three decades later, in 2007, Sherman relocated a portion of his barn back down to Southern California.  His son, Steve Sherman, took control of the barn in Northern California while Art traveled back south. 

Art Sherman has won a handful of Grade I Stakes with the horses Haimish Hy, Lang Field, Siren Lure, Ultra Bend, and of course, California Chrome.  Sherman won his first $1 million race with California Chrome in the Santa Anita Derby.  The impressive win at Santa Anita guaranteed Art and California Chrome a spot in the 140ths first Kentucky Derby runner.  After another exiting Kentucky Derby, Art and his chestnut colt came out on top, a place they had both worked so hard to be. 

Even during all the madness of the Run for the Roses, Art made time to visit an important gravesite located in the garden behind the Kentucky Derby Museum.  This gravesite is that of an old friend - Swaps.  This year, Art finally found his own Swaps and the dynamic team took the world by surprise

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Hal Wiggins"

April 8, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller

Hal Wiggins was born into a Thoroughbred horse racing family.  As the son of a Texan racehorse trainer, Hal came to adore horses at a young age, especially Thoroughbred racehorses.  Wiggins was taught by his father how to care for a horse, train a horse, and always do what is right for the horse.  Hal’s father raced his horses on small Midwest tracks.  Hal knew that he wanted to follow in his father’s footsteps and hopefully make a difference.  In 1975, Wiggins began training both Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses in Louisiana.  Soon after Hal’s career began, the young trainer moved to Kentucky to make his business thrive. 

All throughout his career, Hal Wiggins was looking for “the horse”.  This horse would put Hal’s name down in history and she came along a little over 30 years after Wiggin’s career began.  This horse was Rachel Alexandra.  Dolphus Morrison, who chose Hal as her trainer, originally owned the talented filly.  This pair took Rachel Alexandra all the way to the 2009 Kentucky Oaks which she won by 20 1/4th lengths.  Immediately after her astounding Kentucky Oaks win, Rachel Alexandra was sold to Stonestreet Stables and Harold T. McCormick for an undisclosed amount of money. After the sale, Rachel was transferred to the barn of her new owner's regular trainer, Steve Asmussen.

Some of Wiggin’s other notable horses are Leo’s Gypsy Dancer, Chorwon, and Morris Code.  In 2007, a very brave six-year-old girl named Rachel Mattson was diagnosed with a life threatening disorder called Aplastic Anemia.  Aplastic Anemia is a disorder of the bone marrow, and quite rare.  Rachel was born loving horses, especially racehorses.  Soon after, Rachel’s family went to the Make-A-Wish Foundation where an ill child’s wish can be granted.  Rachel’s wish was to attend the 2009 Kentucky Derby.  At Churchill Downs, Rachel and her family were able to take a tour of the track, and meet trainers, jockeys, and horses.  Rachel’s dream came true when she was able to meet her favorite horse, Rachel Alexandra.  Trainer Hal Wiggins invited Rachel to spend Oaks Day with Rachel Alexandra’s team.  Rachel even made it into the filly’s winner circle celebration and picture thanks to Hal’s wonderful heart and desire to make little Rachel’s dream come true.  This day became a beautiful memory for both Rachel and Hal.  This day also marked the beginning of Rachel’s successful recovery, much in thanks to Hal. 

Wiggins retired in 2009 after the Churchill Downs fall meet.  Wiggin’s barn of horses went to multiple trainers, one of which was his own son.  Hal and his wife Renee Wiggins’s son, Lon, continued the family tradition of being a Thoroughbred racehorse trainer.  Lon is based out of Arlington Park in Illinois.  Father, Hal, and son, Lon, have both followed the same principals in their training barn.  Their clients are their friends and their horses are their friends.  And most importantly, they do what is right for the horse.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Ben Jones"

March 8, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller

Not many thoroughbred racehorse trainers have the honor of saying they have won the Kentucky Derby a total of six times.  Most trainers have not won the Run for the Roses one time.  Benjamin Jones, better known as Ben, is a member of the very elite club of thoroughbred trainers who have won the Kentucky Derby.  Ben stands out because he has won what many call “the Greatest Two Minutes in Sports” six different times; an accomplishment no other trainer has yet succeeded in repeating or surpassing.   

Benjamin Allyn Jones was born on December 31, 1882 in Parnell, Missouri.  For high school, Jones attended the prestigious Wentworth Military Academy located in Lexington, Missouri.  When in his twenties, Ben entered the business of breeding and training thoroughbred racehorses.  Ben raced his horses in smaller circuits mainly in the west and even in Mexico.  After only two short decades of working in the business, Ben was recognized as one of the best trainers ever. 

In 1931, Jones received an opportunity to train for Woolford Farm located in Prairie Village, Kansas.  Ben decided to give up his personal operation and take up the new offer.  The decision paid off when his horse Lawrin won the 1938 Kentucky Debry.  The following year, Jones ended his partnership with Woolford Farm to start a new job working for Warren Wright, Sr. and his barn, Calumet Farm.  Ben relocated to  Lexington, Kentucky to run the breeding operation. Thanks in large part to Ben’s natural talent and extensive knowledge, Calumet became one of the greatest stables in thoroughbred racing history. 

Benjamin won the Kentucky Derby six times, these victories occurring in the years 1938, 1941, 1944, 1948, 1949, and 1952.  Jones was fortunate enough to train arguably two of the greatest racehorses ever, Whirlaway and Citation. In the entertainment world Ben’s talent and accomplishments were recognized so much so that they made him the cover of the May 30, 1949 issue of Time Magazine.  Soon after, in 1953, Jones retired from thoroughbred horse racing.  Five years later in 1958, Ben Jones was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame. 

Thoroughbred horse racing lost a legend on June 13, 1961 when Ben passed away at the age of seventy-eight.  No other trainer has matched or surpassed his accomplishments and Ben remains the Kings of the Run for the Roses. 

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

 

"Kristin Mulhall"

February 9, 2014 by Kate Weissmuller
 
“She’s half-horse,” said Hall of Fame jockey Kent Desormeaux regarding the young and talented thoroughbred racehorse trainer, Kristin Mulhall.  Born on July 27, 1982 in the beautiful Pasadena, California, Kristin was destined for fame in the horse industry.  Mulhall was born into a horse family and began her riding career early on.  Kristin was the young age of two when she rode her first horse.  Once she saved up enough money in her piggy bank, Kristin purchased her first show horse at the age of ten.  Then at fourteen years old, Mulhall very successfully competed at the highest level of show jumping.  This success lead to Kristin‘s first big break.  Mulhall and her talented show jumper named Superman were scheduled to compete in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece.  Due to an unfortunate injury, Kristin’s dreams were shattered and the Olympic Games went on without her and Superman. 

After puncturing her left arm on a sharp object while hanging up tack which ended her Olympic dreams, Kristin’s focus soon changed to her thoroughbred racehorse training career.  Kristin had mentored under the very successful and famous trainer John Shirreffs at Hollywood Park, before receiving her trainer’s license at 19.  Kristin then began her business with a handful of horses she purchased herself.  Mulhall’s godfather sent Kristin eight more horses the following year including her first winner, Atarama, and her first stakes winner, Sentimental Value. 

In 2004, Kristin was given another big break in the horse racing industry.  Mulhall had a very special and inconveniently visually impaired horse in her 40-horse barn.  This horse was Imperialism.  Steve Taub bought Imperialism for $150,000 and put him under Kristin’s training.  In a rags to riches fashion, Mulhall was able to transform Imperialism into a graded stakes winning powerhouse.  In 2004, Imperialism finished third in the Santa Anita Derby, which guaranteed his entry in the 130th Kentucky Derby.  Imperialism, with Kent Desormeaux in the irons, crossed the finish line third behind Smarty Jones and Lion Heart, almost capturing the coveted Roses. 

Kristin continues to train mainly out of Southern California.  Hopefully Mulhall will soon have another chance to upset the odds and prove her talent in the Run for the Roses.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Steve Asmussen"

October 17, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

Located in the South of Texas off of Mines Road in Laredo, also known as the seat of Webb County, is El Primero Training Center.  El Primero is operated by two local trainers named Keith and Marilyn "Sis" Asmussen.  Keith and Sis have two sons who are both Thoroughbred racehorse trainers.  Cash Asmussen began his career in the horse racing industry as a jockey who mainly raced in Europe.  After an Eclipse-Award winning career, Cash retired from riding and began training.  The Asmussen’s other son is Steve Asmussen. 

Steven Mark Asmussen was born on the 18th of November, 1965 in Gettysburg, South Dakota.  Steve attended United High School in Laredo and graduated in 1985.  At age sixteen, Steve obtained his jockey's license.  Asmussen raced in California, New Mexico, and New York for three years.  His short career was ended due to his height and weight, which both exceeded the limits.  Then in 1986, Steve began training Thoroughbreds and American Quarter Horses in New Mexico. 

Steve wasted no time before he began breaking records.  He was the leading trainer in Thoroughbred horse racing in 2002 with 407 wins and later, in 2004, Steve set a new record for amount of wins by a trainer with 555.  This record surpassed the previous one of 496 held by Jack Van Berg since 1976.  In 2008, Asmussen won 621 races in a single season which led him to win the Eclipse Award as Outstanding Trainer for the year of 2008.  Exceeding himself the following year, Steve won his 623rd race of the season in 2009.  By the end of 2009, Steve had won 650 races and over $21 million in purse earnings. 

Steve trained many tremendously talented horses throughout his career that have accompanied him to success.  Some of Asmussen’s most accomplished horses include Gaff, Doctor Decherd, Pyro, Storm Treasure, Private Vow, Kodiak Kowboy, Rachel Alexandra, and Curlin.  The marvelous colt Curlin ran third in the 2007 Kentucky Derby to Street Sense.  Curlin redeemed himself in the Preakness Stakes by coming in first with regular rider Robby Albarado.  Curlin then finished second in the Belmont Stakes beaten by the filly Rags to Riches.  Later in the year, Curlin redeemed himself once more by winning the 2007 Breeders’ Cup Classic at Monmouth Park in New Jersey. 

Currently, Steve lives in Arlington Texas with his wife, Julie Marie Asmussen and their three sons Eric Mark, Darren Scott, and Keith James.  Steve runs one of the largest training operations in the United States and can be seen with his horses at all of racing's major events.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Richard Mandella"
 
September 7, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

Sixty-three years ago on November 5, U.S. Racing Hall of Fame member Richard Eugene Mandella was born. He was born in Altadena, California, a Southern California city near the historical Santa Anita Park. Mandella’s father was a blacksmith and farrier who worked with both show horses and racehorses. Mandella’s father introduced Richard to horses and horse racing at a very young age. His first job working with horses came while he was still in high school, training at a ranch located near his house. His next job was across the country and the stakes were much higher.

Richard relocated to New York and took a job working as assistant to thoroughbred racehorse trainer Lefty Nickerson. Nickerson was a big time trainer in the Northeast at the time who later opened a barn in southern California. Mandella again switched jobs and migrated to another part of the country. Now calling the south home, Richard moved to Texas in 1974 and took a job working with horseman Roger Braugh.

Two years later, Mandella moved back to his hometown and opened up his own thoroughbred-racing stable. Some of Richard’s most talented, well-known horses are Pleasantly Perfect, Phone Trick, Bad n’ Big, and Dare and Go. Six of Mandella’s horses have ran in the Kentucky Derby. In addition, between the 1996 and 1998, Richard’s horses Dare and Go, Malek, Gentleman, and Siphon won Mandella six straight races, each worth one million dollars. Later, in 2003, Richard won four different Breeders' Cup races with Pleasantly Perfect, Action This Day, Halfbridled, and Johar who each won a race in their respective categories that year.

In 2001, Richard Mandella was inducted into the U.S. Racing Hall of Fame. Five years later, in 2006, Richard branched out and wrote the introduction to the book Santa Anita Morning Rhapsody by Karen S. Davis who is also a photographer. Santa Anita Morning Rhapsody is a book about thoroughbred racehorse training focusing specifically on morning workouts and training.

Now 63, Richard Mandella is still training out of his barn located at Santa Anita. He lives in the nearby city of Bradbury. He has a wife named Randi, a son named Gary, and a daughter, Andrea. Gary Mandella followed in his father’s footsteps and is also working as a thoroughbred racehorse trainer, carrying his father's passion for the sport into the next generation.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Bruce Headley"
 
August 3, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

On February 14, known to most as Valentines Day, of 1934, Bruce Headley was born in beautiful Baldwin Park, California.  Bruce entered the exciting world of horse racing when he was quite young, working as an exercise rider during his teenage years through his early twenties.  He began exercise riding at the age of fifteen and worked until he was twenty-five when he received his trainer’s license in 1959.  Headley’s first significant win came in the 1979 Honeymoon Breeders’ Cup Handicap with the horse Variety Queen. 

Bruce’s first national attention grabbing horse was the great Bertrando.  Bruce and Bertrando won the 1991 Grade 1 Norfolk Stakes by a record setting nine lengths.  Later that year, the team went on to race in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.  Bertrando finished second to the European star, Arazi.  Bruce then had the opportunity to train the talented sprint horse, Kona Gold.  Bruce brought up Kona Gold very patiently, blossoming him into a strong and talented horse.  Due to physical setbacks, Kona Gold did not begin racing until his 4-year-old year.  Kona Gold and Bruce traveled to Churchill Downs to start Kona Gold in his sixth lifetime race, which would be the 1998 Breeders’ Cup Sprint.  Kona Gold finished 3rd and was beaten by a total of two lengths.

Two years later Kona Gold and Bruce Headley had their best year yet.  At the end of his six-year-old year, Kona Gold won the Breeders’ Cup Sprint and was then voted the American Champion Sprint Horse.  Bruce owned 1/3 of Kona Gold and therefore he was used as a pony horse in Bruce’s barn.  Headley also trained the talented filly named Got Koko whom Headley’s wife, Aase, in conjunction with Paul Leung, owned.  The filly became the third horse ever to win the La Canada Series hosted at Santa Anita Park.  Since 1975, the series has included the La Brea, the El Encino, and the La Canada Stakes.  The series is for 4-year-old fillies that are running at increasing distances. 

Still training in southern California like he always has, Bruce Headley has a barn completely full of young and talented thoroughbreds.  Primarily running his horses at Santa Anita, Hollywood Park, and Del Mar, Bruce is widely known for his dedicated training, good eye, and committed attitude. 

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Neil D. Drysdale"
 
July 2, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

On December 11, 1947, Neil D. Drysdale was born in Haslemere, Surrey located in England.  Neil’s father was a Marine who fought in Korea with the United States Marines.  His father was also a part of the British Calgary, which sparked Neil’s fascination with horses.  Neil studied to be a teacher at the University of Barcelona, before going on to become an English teacher.  Drysdale’s love for horses caused him to be restless and unhappy with his occupation of teaching, so Neil moved to Florida to work with show horses in the hunter/jumper industry.  Soon after, Neil switched over to thoroughbred racehorses. 

Drysdale spent his first two years in the horse racing industry with trainer John Hartigan at Tartan Farms, which is located in Ocala, Florida.  Neil’s next career change was moving to a thoroughbred barn in Argentina to train the horses there.  Afterwards, Neil moved once again, this time to a stud farm in Venezuela.  In 1968, Drysdale relocated back to America and worked as assistant trainer to Roger Laurin for two more years. 

Subsequently, Neil moved to Charlie Whittingham’s barn in California to be his assistant trainer from 1970 through 1974.  At Whittingham’s barn, Neil says he learned two of the most important training techniques, which are patience and planning.  In 1974 Neil began working for Corbin Robertson’s Saron Stable.  He trained his first bicoastal Grade 1 winner named Bold ‘n Determined between the years of 1979 and 1981.

Finally in 1983, Neil Drysdale opened his own racing stable in the stunning Playa Del Ray, California.  Here, Drysdale’s first big break was the horse Forceten.  Since the start of his career, Neil has saddled 31 Breeders’ Cup starters, with a total of six of them who have come in first; this includes Neil’s most famous horse A.P. Indy who won in 1992.  After their Breeders’ Cup victories, A.P. Indy, Princess Rooney, Tasso, and Hollywood Wildcat all went on to win an Eclipse Award.  Some other famous horses that Drysdale has trained or conditioned include Hawksley Hill, French Deputy, Labeeb, and Roanoke.  Some of Neil’s leading owners include Peter Vegso and Sheikh Maktoum.  Neil is known as an international trainer running his horses in such places as Dubai, Hong Kong, and South Africa. 

Neil Drysdale is known for his sensational patience and instinctive ability to run a horse where it belongs.  This got Neil inducted into the Racing Hall of Fame in the year 2000.  This is the same year that Neil ran his first starter in the Kentucky Derby.  The horse was Fusaichi Pegasus, and he won. 

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Claude R. 'Shug' McGaughey III"
 
June 6, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

A few weeks ago, Orb flew across the finish line at the famous Churchill Downs in the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby.  Waiting to receive the silver trainer’s trophy and his share of the roses was Orb’s Hall of Fame trainer, Shug McGaughey. 

Claude R. “Shug” McGaughey III was born on January 6, 1952 in Lexington, Kentucky.  As a young boy, Shug’s parents introduced him to the sport of thoroughbred horse racing at Keeneland Race Course in Kentucky.  The atmosphere and the competition of the sport instantly had Shug hooked and in love.  Shug went from a young racing fan to groom for trainer David Carr.  He dropped out of the University of Mississippi in his junior year to keep his job as groom.  

Shug McGaughey began his training career in 1979.  In 1986, Mr.McGaughey got his big break when famous trainer Ogden Phipps hired Shug to train the thoroughbred racehorses in his stable.  His next job was assistant trainer for David Whiteley.  Then in 1979, Shug opened his own stable.  With the help of his longtime friend Buzz Tenney, McGaughey was named the trainer of the powerful Phipps Family Stable. 

Throughout the years, Shug McGaughey has worked hard and created an award-winning barn.  Shug is best known for his success with dirt horses.  Then in 2012, McGaughey had great success with turf runners, including Air Support, Boisterous, Data Link, Hit It Rich, Hungry Island, and Point of Entry.  This proved Shug McGaughey’s versatility and flexibility.  

Throughout McGaughey’s career, he has also won a total of nine Breeders’ Cup races, only second in number to the famous D. Wayne Lukas.  Some of his victories on the track include winning two Breeders’ Cup races in one day.  This marvel occurred twice.  In 1989, Dancing Spree won the Sprint and Rhythm captured the Juvenile.  Then in 1995 at Belmont in New York, My Flag won the Juvenile Fillies and Inside Information the Ladies' Classic.  In addition, Lure won the Breeders’ Cup Mile in both 1992 and 1993.  Furthermore, Shug has won more than 240 graded staked races, one of which was the Grade 1 Personal Ensign on August 29, 2010 at Saratoga in New York.  Shug’s horse Persistently beat reigning Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra. ​

McGaughey was inducted into the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame on August 9, 2004. Additionally, Shug won the Eclipse Award as Outstanding Trainer in 1988.  He was the leading trainer by win percentage in New York during all of 1987, 1988 and 1989.  Moreover, Shug was honored by the New York Turf Writers Association with the prestigious Outstanding Trainer Award in both 1988 and 1993.  He was also honored with the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen Association’s C.V. Whitney Achievement Award for 1993.  McGaughey’s latest career achievement was winning the Kentucky Derby in 2013, last May.  His beautiful three year old, Orb, has a promising and exciting career ahead of him.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"D. Wayne Lukas"
 
May 1, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

Darrell Wayne Lukas is one of the most famous and well-known thoroughbred racehorse trainers in history.  D. Wayne Lukas was born on September 2, 1935 in Antigo, Wisconsin on his family’s 10-acre farm.  This is where D. Wayne’s passion for horses began.  D. Wayne’s father, Ted Lukas, drove a milk truck and construction equipment for a living, providing for D. Wayne and his two other siblings but giving them a plain life. 

To begin his career in horse racing, D. Wayne began racing his pony at the Antigo County Fairgrounds.  Once D. Wayne graduated from the local high school, he attended the University of Wisconsin.  Here, he majored in physical education and later earned his masters in education.  With his degrees, D. Wayne worked as Wisconsin University’s assistant basketball coach.  He then moved on to become the head coach at a near by high school.  D. Wayne once said, “My mother wanted me to make a contribution to society, so I became a teacher, but from day one I knew what I wanted to do was train horses."  Therefore, during the summers, D. Wayne would race horses at Park Jefferson Race Track in South Dakota.  After finding great success, D. Wayne relocated to California in 1972. 

In California, D. Wayne established himself as the top Quarter Horse trainer, his charges earning over one million dollars a year.  He had twenty-four world champions with-in about a ten-year time span.  Then in 1978, D. Wayne made the switch to training Thoroughbreds.  D. Wayne got his first major break when he won the 1980 Preakness Stakes with Codex.  He has won the Kentucky Derby four times, the Preakness Stakes five times, and the Belmont Stakes four times.  In 1995, D. Wayne’s Thunder Gulch won the Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes while his other horse, Timber Country, won the Preakness Stakes, giving D. Wayne his own personal Triple Crown. 

Regarding the Breeders’ Cup, D. Wayne has won 19 races, giving him more wins in this prestigious event than any other trainer in the industry.  Lukas has produced three separate Eclipse Award winners for Horse of the Year in 1986, 1990, and 1999.  Moreover, D. Wayne has won the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Trainer four times.  In 1999, Lukas was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame.  Then in 2007, D. Wayne was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame, making him the only person to be in both the Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse Hall of Fame's.  In addition to training in California, Lukas sends horses to race in New York as well.  D. Wayne is the first trainer to earn more than $100 million in purse money.   

In the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby, D. Wayne Lukas has number nine, Will Take Charge, with Jon Court in the irons.  D. Wayne also has the number sixteen horse, Oxbow, with Gary Stevens riding.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"John Shirreffs"
 
April 5, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

John Shirreffs began training Thoroughbred racehorses an incredible thirty-five years ago.  John was born on June 1, 1945 in charming Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.  Shortly after, his family moved to New Hampshire and lived on a farm.  They then relocated to Long Island, New York.  In each house, John was surrounded by horses that he rode and showed often.  After attending college, Mr. Shirreffs fought in the Vietnam War in the Marine Corps until he was discharged.  Subsequent to fighting in the war, John began working at Loma Rica Ranch in Northern California.  There he met Henry Freitas who taught John about monitoring mares, stallions and yearlings–to breaking, training and racing them.  John then obtained his trainer's license in 1978 and operated a small stable in Northern California. 

In the mid 1990’s, John Shirreffs became the private trainer for 505 Farm owned by Marshall Naify.  Several years later, due to Marshall Naify's encouragement, John became a public Thoroughbred racehorse trainer.  John Shirreffs' primary philosophy is that the Thoroughbred racehorse is a creation of strength and beauty and must be treasured at all times.  Because of John’s loyalty to his philosophy, close care, superb training, and determination to succeed, he was able to create a high performing barn.  Some of his most accomplished horses include Giacomo, Tiago, Manistique, Hollywood Story, After Market, Zardana, Life is Sweet, and Zenyatta.  In 2005, John Shirreffs' owners Mr. Jerome Moss and Mrs. Anne Moss, and Jockey Mike E. Smith, guided Giacomo to a Kentucky Derby victory.  This was John’s first Kentucky Derby win.  Later in 2008, John won his first Breeders’ Cup race with the legendary Zenyatta in the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic.  A year later, John saddled both Life Is Sweet, winner of the 2009 Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic, and Zenyatta, winner of that year's Breeders’ Cup Classic.  This gave John the honor of being the only trainer to saddle both the Breeder’s Cup Ladies’ Classic and the Breeder’s Classic winners in the same year. 

John is married to Dottie Ingordo.  He enjoys spending his free time away from the barn doing anything with horses, photography, and following other sports.  His favorite photography subject is that of racehorses.  John recently announced he is leaving Southern California to move to New York where he will continue training Thoroughbred racehorses. 

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Mike Puype"
 
March 1, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

The success Mike Puype has obtained in the few decades he has been training is remarkable.  Mike was born in the hot climate of Phoenix, Arizona on August 4, 1966.  During the winter, Mike’s grandparents would visit and take the young Mike to the beautiful Turf Paradise.  Soon after, at the age of twenty, Mike became both a thoroughbred owner and trainer located at Turf Paradise.  He continued training in Arizona for five years until he relocated to Southern California, where he was assistant trainer to Walter Greenman.  Succeeding, Mike began training as the private trainer for the Cobra Operation and its owner Gary Biszantz in 1995.  Mike won four graded stakes with his chief horse named Cobra King.  Seven years later, Mike opened his own public stable in California.

Throughout his career, Mike continued to purchase his own horses.  His favorite horses are the very young thoroughbreds from South America.  He also enjoys claiming horses with the intention of improving them.  He is picky when it comes to choosing a claiming horse.  He looks for ones with hidden talent that he can nurture and develop.  In addition, Mike focuses hard on pleasing his owners.  They all have different goals and aspirations and Mike wants to achieve them.  He creates intricate plans hoping to accomplish the goals and create a strong, athletic horse.

Mike Puype’s first top horse was the magnificent Old Trieste.  In 1998 as a three-year-old, Old Trieste won the Swaps Stakes and Del Mar Breeders' Cup Handicap, which are both grade two races.  He also won the Affirmed Handicap which is a grade three.  Later, as a four year old in 1999, Old Trieste won the Californian Stakes, a grade two.  Mike has participated in the Breeders’ Cup four times in his career to date.  In 2012, he sent Mizdirection to run in the Breeder’s Cup Turf Sprint; she finished first out of fourteen other sprinters.

With many talented horses stabled in his barn, there's little doubt Mike Puype will have another successful year.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Todd Pletcher"
 
February 1, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller

Todd Pletcher was born on June 26, 1967 in the beautiful city of Dallas, Texas.  When he was only seven years old, Todd worked as a hot walker for his father, Jake Pletcher.  He worked at Ruidoso Downs located in New Mexico with both Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses.  During the summers, Todd traveled to California to work at Hollywood Park and Del Mar race track as a hot walker for Henry Moreno.  In 1985, Mr. Pletcher graduated from James Madison High School to attend the University of Arizona.  Once at the University of Arizona, Todd trained in their Race Track Industry Program.  

During the summer of his sophomore and junior years, Todd got a job as a groom for the famous D. Wayne Lukas in Chicago at Arlington Park.  The next summer, he was a groom for Charlie Whittingham at Hollywood Park near Los Angeles.  In the May of 1989, Todd graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Animal Science. He quickly packed up and moved to New York to work with D. Wayne Lukas as a foreman in his racing stable.

Todd Pletcher received his first break in 1991 when he was promoted to assistant trainer in D. Wayne Lukas’ racing barn.  He worked in both Florida and New York. Then, in 1995, Todd received his second big break when he took out his own trainer’s license.  Two months later he had his first winner at Gulfstream Park in Florida.  He was such a main component in the successes of horses like Harlan, A Wild Ride, Thunder Gulch, Flanders, and Serena’s Song that he was compelled to seek out his own career and success. 

In 2004, Todd trained Ashado, a three-year-old filly, to a victory in the Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky.  She went on to win the Breeders’ Cup Distaff in November of the same year.  She topped off her three-year-old year when she was presented the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Three Year Old. Another Pletcher horse named Speoghtstown, also won a Breeders’ Cup Sprint Race in 2004 and was named Outstanding Sprint Horse for that year as well. Since then, Todd Pletcher has been winning Grade 1 races, Triple Crown races, and Breeders’ Cup races all over the country.

Mr. Pletcher received the Eclipse Award for Champion Trainer four consecutive years in 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2007.  He also received the Woody Stephens Award as Outstanding Trainer in 1998, 2002, 2005, and 2006 presented by the New York Turf Writers Association.  Todd has won 21 New York training titles in a span of eight years and doesn't look as if he'll be stopping any time soon.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Charles Whittingham"
 
January 2, 2013 by Kate Weissmuller  
 
Charles Whittingham is known to be one of the most famous and talented Thoroughbred racehorse trainers ever. Charles was the first trainer to win the Eclipse award for Outstanding Trainer in 1971.  Being exposed to horses for almost his whole life, Charles acquired the perfect eye for training racehorses. 

Charles Whittingham, called Charlie by most, was born on April 13, 1913 in Chula Vista, California.  He began working with racehorses at a very young age when Hall of Fame Trainer Horatio Luro noticed his talent.  Charlie began working as Luro’s assistant trainer.  In 1941, when World War II broke out, Charlie went to serve in the United States Marine Corps.  This meant he head to bring his training career to a halt.  When the war ended, Charlie began his work as an assistant trainer once again.  In 1950, Charlie established his own barn and became the trainer for various owners. Soon after, Liz Whitney Tippett hired Whittingham to condition and train for her barn known as Llangollen Farm Racing Stable.  Llangollen’s horse Porterhouse went on to win two-year-old colt honors.  

Some of Whittingham’s most notable horses include Sunday Silence, Ack Ack, and Ferdinand who all won the Eclipse Award for American Horse of the Year.  His horse Cougar II also won Champion Turf Horse, and his horses won Champion Female Turf Horses four times over.  In addition, in 1971, Whittingham received the honor of Outstanding Trainer himself, the first winner of the prestigious award.  He won the award again in 1982 and 1989. In 1974, Charles Whittingham was inducted into the National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame.  Then nineteen years later, Charlie was inducted into the Breitbard Hall of Fame in the San Diego Hall of Champions.  Lastly, Charles also won U.S. Champion Trainer by earnings from 1970 to 1973 then again in 1975, 1981, and 1982.

In 1986 when Charlie was seventy-three years old, he won the Kentucky Derby with Ferdinand, making him the oldest trainer to ever do so.  Three years later, Whittingham won the Kentucky Derby again with Sunday Silence. Both Ferdinand and Sunday Silence went on to win the Breeder’s Cup Classic in their respective years.  Throughout Charlie’s forty-nine years of training racehorses, he won 252 stakes, giving him the title of all-time leading trainer at Santa Anita Park and Hollywood Park.

On April 20, 1999, Charles Whittingham passed away.  He was eighty-six years old.  To honor the great Charlie, Hollywood Park named a Grade 1 race after him, called the Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap. Hollywood also has the Whittingham Pub and Deli.  In addition, there is a bust of Charlie and his dog Toby in the Paddock at Santa Anita Park.  At Del Mar Race Track, there is a Pub named the Whittingham Sports Pub.  It has memorabilia and photographs in honor of one of horse racing's greatest trainers, Charles Whittingham.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Tim Ice"

December 1, 2012 by Kate Weissmuller

Jockey World is incredibly lucky to have Tim Ice, an extremely talented Thoroughbred racehorse trainer, as one of our sponsors and supporters.  Tim Ice is a rising star in the horse racing industry. At the young age of thirty-eight, he has already created an admirable résumé and has no intentions of stopping.

Tim Ice's new home was the famous Louisiana Downs.  Although he was already close to a racetrack, Tim decided to go elsewhere and work for trainer Keith Desormeaux, brother of two-time Derby winner Kent Desormeaux.  He traveled around the Midwest with Desormeaux, racing and training Thoroughbred racehorses. This job lasted for five years until he took a small break from the business.  

barn, also under the title of assistant trainer.  In part due to his lengthy exposure to many different styles of training, Tim was able to branch off on his own in 2009.  He captured his first stakes win the very same year with the horse Affirmed Truth in the Rainbow Miss Stakes at Oaklawn Park, on March 28th. 

Less than three months later, Ice-trained Summer Bird won the Belmont Stakes. Aside from being the third jewel in racing's Triple Crown, also known as "The Test of Champions," the race just happened to fall on Tim's 35th birthday.  Summer Bird went on to win both the Grade 1 Travers Stakes and Jockey Gold Cup later that year.  To end a magnificent year, Summer Bird was voted the American Champion Three Year Old Male Horse of 2009.  Tim continues to train horses in the Midwest, racing his horses at Oaklawn, Arlington and Hawthorne.  He currently lives in Chicago with his wife Jennifer and son Carson.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Bill Mott"

October 30, 2012 by Kate Weissmuller

About a year ago, on Saturday November 5, 2012, trainer Bill Mott won the $5,000,000 Breeders’ Cup Classic for the second time in his career.  He won in 2011 with Drosselmeyer and in 1995 with Cigar.  This year, Bill Mott has three horses running in the Classic.  They are Flat Out, Ron the Greek, and To Honor and Serve.  Mr. Mott has an excellent chance of winning back-to-back. 

William “Bill” Mott was born in the beautiful Mobridge, South Dakota on July 29, 1953.  Regarding his career, Bill made up his mind at a very young age. When he was only fifteen years old, Bill began training Thoroughbred racehorses out of South Dakota.  His first major win was the South Dakota Futurity.  The winning horse was Kosmic Tour.  In addition, he won the South Dakota Futurity before he graduated high school.  To learn more about the training business, Mott began exercise riding for the famous trainer Jack Van Berg.  He then got a job as Jack Van Berg’s assistant trainer and began working with Frank Brothers.  As a team of three, in the year 1976, Jack Van Berg, Frank Brothers, and Bill Mott had extensive wins at Sportsman’s, Hawthorne, and Arlington Park in Chicago.  Mott’s help and excellent training lead to Jack Van Berg winning leading trainer at Arlington Park and in the Nation in 1976.  Two years later, Bill Mott focused on improving his own career.

Bill Mott’s first career-making horse was the world famous Cigar. (Jockey World Member and contributing writer, Kate Weissmuller, shown right with her "Cigar" Breyer Model.)  Cigar peeked in the years 1995 and 1996.  In 1995, when Cigar was five years old, he won the Breeders’ Cup Classic.  Later the next year, six-year-old Cigar won the first Dubai World Cup, now known as the worlds' richest race with a purse of $10,000,000.  Cigar won sixteen consecutive races all around the world throughout his breath-taking career.  This gave Bill Mott the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Trainer in both 1995 and 1996 and later in 2011.  Then excellent training for years after lead to Bill Mott’s induction into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1998.  He was the young age of 45, the second youngest trainer ever inducted. 

In recent years, Bill Mott has been training on the East coast circuit.  He has won 28 training titles on the East coast since 1992.  Still to this day, Bill Mott has a barn full of winners.  Mr. Mott is able to train all different types of horse and turn them into winners, like Drosselmeyer.  He is also known as one of the best turf trainers of all time.  We wish Bill the best of luck at the test of champions with a total of four horses entered to run.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

 

"Bob Baffert"

October 1, 2012 by Kate Weissmuller

​For twenty-one years, Bob Baffert has been known as one of Thoroughbred horse racing’s best and most accomplished trainers.  Fifty-nine years ago, Robert (Bob) A. Baffert was born on January 13 in Nogales, Arizona.  After taking up a jockey’s license, Bob continued to grow and became too tall and too heavy to remain a jockey.  He then became a Quarter Horse trainer.  This career gave Baffert instant success.  His last major career change was becoming a Thoroughbred racehorse trainer based in the beautiful Southern California. 

Cup rolled around in 1992, Bob entered his horse Thirty SlewsCup Sprint.  This led to Bob s first Breeders' Cup win.  Currently, BaffertCup races, finished second nine times, and finished third three times out of fifty-seven starts.  This win led more clients with very talented and valuable horses to take notice and begin training with Bob.   This then led him to win the Kentucky Derby three times, the Preakness Stakes five times, and the Belmont Stakes once.  Baffert almost had his Triple Crown dreams come true with Silver Charm in 1997, Real Quiet in 1998, and most recently War Emblem in 2002.

In 2007, Bob Bafferts Hall of Fame in Saratoga Springs, New York.  Along with these two honors, Baffert won the Big Sport of Turfdom Award in 1997; Eclipse Award for Outstanding Trainer in 1997, 1998, and 1999; and United States Champion Trainer by earnings in 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2001.

Bob Baffert currently resides in La Canada, California.  He has five children from two marriages.  From his first marriage, Bob had four children.  With his current wife Jill, Bob had son Bode in 2004, named after the famous skier Bode Miller.  The Baffert family owns a summer camp near Saratoga Racetrack in New York.  The camp is located on Great Sacandga Lake. 

Currently, Bob Baffert30, 2012, Bob Baffert won a total of five races, including the grade 1 Chandelier Stakes, the grade 1 Front Runner Stakes, and the grade 1 Awesome Again Stakes.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"James Edward Fitzsimmons"

August 30, 2012 by Kate Weissmuller

​Take a trip to the beautiful Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn, New York. Now, time travel back to the Summer of 1874. On July 23, James Edward Fitzsimmons, known to most as Sunny Jim, was born.  Knowing he wanted to make his name in the horse racing business, Sunny Jim did what he knew he had to do and started at the bottom.   When Sunny Jim turned eleven, he began working as a stable boy at the racetrack.  When Sunny Jim grew older, he decided to take up a career as a jockey.  After ten unsuccessful years, Sunny Jim grew too heavy to continue his failing career.  Then in 1894, Sunny Jim made the life changing decision to begin a new career as a Thoroughbred racehorse trainer.  His career lasted an amazing 69 years and resulted in 2,275 wins.  Three of his 2,275 wins were Kentucky Derby wins, four were Preakness Stakes wins and six were Belmont Stakes wins.  

Mr. Fitz (another famous name for James) trained two Triple Crown winning horses in his long career.  The first was Gallant Fox in 1930.  Only five years later in 1935 he trained Omaha .  Sunny Jim trained for Wheatley Stable giving them a Preakness win and the 1957 American Horse of the Year win with the amazing horse Bold Ruler who later sired Secretariat.  Mr. Fitz's most famous horse was the small Seabiscuit who by many is thought to have brought America out of the Great Depression.  He trained Seabiscuit in his early days.  Sunny Jim saw his potential but felt he was too lazy and unmotivated to get the job done.  He tried his best but spent most of his time training horses who showed improvement in their training (unlike Seabiscuit).  When Seabiscuit switched owners, he also switched trainers.  Some more significant stakes wins were the Jockey Gold Cup (seven times), Empire City Handicap (six times), and the Wood Memorial Stakes (seven times). 

In 1958, James Fitzsimmons was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame for his outstanding accomplishments.  Also, The National Turf Writers Association created the "Mr. Fitz Award" in James' honor.  This award is given to a member of the horse racing fraternity each year.  Sadly, in 1966 James Fitzsimmons passed away in Miami, Florida.  He was 92 years old.  He is buried in Brooklyn, New York at the Holy Cross Cemetery.  He is a legend in horse racing and an idol to many current Thoroughbred horse trainers.  He found his calling and succeeded beyond anyone's expectations.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Jerry Hollendorfer"

August 4, 2012 by Kate Weissmuller

In 2011, one of horse racing’s most accomplished trainers, Jerry Hollendorfer, was inducted into the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame.  After winning his 6,000th race on September 3, 2011 with Just Tappin It, an honor only to be shared with four other trainers in history, Dale Baird, Jack Van Berg, and King Leatherbury, Jerry Hollendorfer can be considered one of horse racing best trainers.

Jerry was born on June 18, 1946 in Akron, Ohio.  Jerry often visited Acton Park in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio as a teenager.  Here he was able to learn all about horse racing and the beautiful Thoroughbred racehorses the sport is all about.  Unfortunately, Acton Park is no longer a racetrack.  

During the 1960’s, Jerry left Ohio to visit friends in San Francisco, California.  He never returned home.  He began working at Jerry Dutton’s barn then at Jerry Fanning’s barn both at Bay Meadows in Northern California.  Soon after, the experienced Jerry Hollendorfer took out his own trainer’s license in 1979.   Jerry’s career did not take off quickly.  Through the first six years of training horses under his own name Jerry only won 59 races.  Then in 1985, Jerry won 56 races.  One year later in 1986, Hollendorfer won 117 races.  As of then, Jerry has maintained a steady 25% win.  He then won the Ever Training Title in the Bay Area from 1986 until 2008.  Jerry is based in Northern California, but runs his horses in Southern California, Alabama, Kentucky, New Jersey, Washington, Illinois, and New York.  

Some of his career changing horses include Blind Luck, Tuscan Evening, Hystericalasy, Heatseeker, Dakota Phone, King Glorious, Lite Light, and Pile Place Dancer.  His most significant wins include the San Vicente Stakes in 1996; La Canada Handicap in 1998; El Encino Stakes in 1998; El Camino Real Derby in 1998, 2002, 2006, 2007, and 2009; Los Angeles Handicap in 2000; California Derby in 2006, 2007 and 2009; Hollywood Oaks in 2006; Honeymoon Breeders’ Cup Handicap in 2008 and the Santa Anita Handicap in 2008, all in California.  For New Jersey, Jerry has the Haskell Invitational Handicap in 1989 and the Molly Pitcher Stakes in both 2007 and 2008.  Also in New York, he has the Coaching Club American Oaks in 1991.   In Kentucky, the Lane’s End Stakes was won in 1998 and 2000 as well as the Humana Distaff Handicap in 2007 and the Fleur de Lis Handicap in 2008.  In Illinois, the Arlington Oaks was won in 2002.  Lastly in Washington, the Longacres Mile Handicap was won in 2004.

Jerry’s career is still going strong and he is trying to add to his astonishing amount of wins.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Ron Ellis"

July 3, 2012 by Kate Weissmuller

Trainer Ronald Ellis, known as Ron Ellis, is a Southern California based trainer. Born on March 10, 1960 in Glendale, California. He grew up in the Los Angeles area. Before horse racing entered his life, young Ron played high school football and hung out with his friends. He witnessed his first live thoroughbred horse race at the famous Santa Anita Park at the age of fifteen. Immediately, he was in love.

One year later, he worked for trainer Larry Sterling on the weekends and during the Del Mar season. Ron graduated James Monroe High in 1977, but took a “skip year” from college to focus on horse racing. He never attended college because his career as a thoroughbred racehorse trainer began.

At the age of twenty, Ron Ellis won his first stakes race with the sassy horse To B. Or Not in the 1980 Carlsbad Stakes at Del Mar. He has always been known as a very patient trainer, giving each horse the attention and time they need. Twenty-nine years later, Ron Ellis won his most important race of his entire career, the Grade 1 Hollywood Gold Cup. His horse was the stunning Rail Trip. In addition, his horse Twice the Vice was a winner of four grade I races in 1996, including the Apple Blossom at Oaklawn Park. Although not having a Kentucky Derby win under his belt, Ron trained 2-year-old champion Declan’s Moon who can incredibly close. He had an undefeated first five starts, but sadly was injured on his Kentucky Derby trail.

In later years, Ron served on the Board of Directors of the Thoroughbred Owners of California. He and his wife Amy McGee Ellis, the sister of thoroughbred racehorse trainer Paul McGee and Marty McGee correspondent for Daily Racing Form, live in Arcadia near Santa Anita Park. They have three daughters Elizabeth, Laura and Christine. He currently trains in the Southern California Circuit. He still takes careful care of his horses giving each one all the attention they can get.

 

Jockey World Member Kate Weissmuller has been riding her whole life. She competes in three day eventing but her favorite phase is cross country! She has been involved with horse racing since she was young and as an aspiring jockey, Kate has found inspiration in jockey Mike Smith. Kate's favorite race horse is Zenyatta and out of all the races each year, she looks forward to watching the Belmont Stakes the most! (Featured left with her horse Wrigley's Big Red/Fawkes)

"Michael Stidham"

June 25, 2012 by Kayla Jarvinen

Born on December 18, 1957 in Neptune, New Jersey, Michael Stidham was born into the horse racing industry. Starting out under the well-rounded supervision of his father, George, who was not only a jockey and trainer, but also, at one point, an agent for the late 5 time Kentucky Derby winning jockey Bill Hartack, Mike worked his way up to assistant trainer. After attending college for two years with the goal of becoming a veterinarian, Stidham realized that his calling was training horses and he went to work for his father in Florida.

In 1978 Stidham began training on his own at Tampa Bay Downs and the following year he won the first race of his career. After a short stint out West, he moved back to the Midwest where he has continued to train with much success.

The 80's and 90's saw a few firsts for Stidham including his first stakes winner in 1980 with Me Good Man in the Independence Stakes, his first graded stakes winner in 1988 with Manzotti in the John B. Campbell Handicap, and his first grade 1 winner with Two Altazano in the 1994 Coaching Club American Oaks. Other prominent horses he's trained include Upperline, winner of the Arlington Oaks; Secret Kin, winner of the Isaac Murphy Handicap; Gran Estreno, two-time winner of the Washington Park Handicap; Workin' for Hops who won the 2010 Arlington Classic and Willcox Inn winner of the 2011 edition.

On February 1st, 2008, Stidham won his 1,000 career race with Exoteric at Sam Houston Park. With a current in-the-money percentage of 48%, you can expect to find Mike Stidham in the winner's circle for a while to come.

 

Jockey World Member Kayla Jarvinen is 19-years-old and pursuing a riding career in horse racing. She enjoys meeting new friends in this wonderful industry, and loves networking and promoting our sport in a positive light to new and "old" fans alike. She also assists Frankie with Jockey World and its projects.

"Woodford 'Woody' Stephens"

April 25, 2012 by Zoe Bragg

There's a reason why he's got a stakes named after him. Woodford Stephens, the youngster from Stanton, Kentucky, began his immersion into horse racing with a brief career as a jockey at the young age of sixteen. Quickly, he realized that riding the horses wasn't his strong suit and took to training on his own in the late 1930s.

In the late 1950s, Stephens was hired by the late Harry Guggenheim as the head trainer for his racing venture. Needless to say, Stephens was hugely successful in getting his horses to run to the best of their ability, racking up a plethora of stakes wins, as well as winning the Kentucky Oaks three times during this period. However, Stephens decided to resume to training publicly, which brought the same kind of success. 

In his seventy years of training racehorses, Stephens won over one hundred Grade 1 stakes and was the proud trainer of eleven Eclipse Award recipients. With barns upon barns of scintillating winners, perhaps some of the best-known of his trainees were 1982 Horse of the Year Conquistador Cielo, 1974 Kentucky Derby-winner Cannonade, and the great Swale (who won the Derby and the Belmont in 1984). Just a few of his accomplishments are his unprecedented and unmatched five consecutive Belmont Stakes wins, two Kentucky Derby trophies, five Kentucky Oaks wins, one Preakness Stakes win, and an induction into the Racing Hall of Fame in 1976, followed shortly thereafter by an Eclipse award as the top trainer in the United States in 1983.

Though Mr. Stephens died in 1998, his legacy lives on through the descendants of the horses he’d trained, as well as through his outstanding list of racing accomplishments.

 

Jockey World Member Zoe Bragg has been riding for as long as she can remember and has been involved in a variety of disciplines. More than anything, she wants to train racehorses professionally in the future and develop the skills to exercise her own horses as well. She believes building a stronger relationship with her horses will contribute to their well-being and aid in the leaning process for all.

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