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Hall of Fame - Trainers

Name Inducted Biography
Steven M. Asmussen 2016

Steve Asmussen’s time as a jockey didn’t amount to much glory — he registered only 63 wins before he outgrew the saddle — but Asmussen’s brief stint as a rider was only a precursor to one of the most successful training careers in American racing history and a spot in the Hall of Fame.

 

King T. Leatherbury 2015

When it comes to winning races, few trainers have done it better than King Leatherbury.

Gary Jones Gary F. Jones 2014

Gary Jones began his career as a racehorse trainer by sending out King Wako on opening day at Santa Anita in 1975.

Robert Wheeler Robert Wheeler 2012

   When C.V. Whitney decided to send a string of horses to the West Coast he did plenty of research into finding the proper trainer.

Roger Attfield Roger L. Attfield 2012

Following a stint as a steeplechase rider and an accomplished career as an international show jumper, Roger Attfield established himself as one of the top thoroughbred trainers in North America.

Jerry Hollendorfer Jerry Hollendorfer 2011

   At the time of his Hall of Fame induction, Jerry Hollendorfer ranked in the top 10 in all-time wins and purse earnings among North American trainers.

Matthew Byrnes Matthew Byrnes 2011

   Matthew Byrnes began his association with Thoroughbred racing as an exercise rider before becoming an accomplished jockey.

M.E. "Buster" Millerick 2010

   In a career that spanned almost 50 years, California native Michael Ernest “Buster” Millerick became known as one of the finest trainers on the West Coast.

Bob Baffert Bob Baffert 2009

Bob Baffert became the 11th trainer to win racing’s Triple Crown when American Pharoah won the Belmont Stakes in 2015. The victory gave Baffert, who three times previously had won both the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes in the same year, a total of 12 victories in the Triple Crown series.

 

Janet Elliot Janet Elliot 2009

   Janet Elliot became the first female trainer inducted into the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame in 2009.

Carl Nafzger Carl Nafzger 2008

   Carl Nafzger took an unconventional route to racing’s Hall of Fame. He is only inductee who is also a member of the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame and the Professional Bull Riders’ Ring of Honor.

Frank McCabe Frank McCabe 2007

   Born on March 10, 1859 in Patterson, N.J., Frank McCabe began his racing career as a jockey before becoming a prolific trainer of Thoroughbreds.

Henry Forrest 2007

A native of Covington, Ky., trainer Henry Forrest won the first two legs of the Triple Crown in both 1966 and 1968 and was the all-time leader in wins at both Churchill Downs and Keeneland Race Course at the time of his death in 1975.

 

John Veitch John Veitch 2007

   The son of Hall of Fame trainer Sylvester Veitch, John Veitch was born in Lexington, Ky., on July 27, 1945.

Carl Hanford Carl Hanford 2006

   Carl Hanford grew up with 10 siblings in Fairbury, Neb. He quit high school and went east to pursue a career as a jockey. 

Nick Zito Nicholas Zito 2005

   Nick Zito won his first Triple Crown race when Strike the Gold captured the Kentucky Derby in 1991.

Sidney Watters Sidney Watters, Jr. 2005

   A Baltimore native who began his racing career as a steeplechase jockey, Sidney Watters, Jr. embarked on a stellar career training jumpers after serving in the military during World War II.

Claude R. McGaughey, III 2004

   Claude R.

Sonny Hine Hubert "Sonny" Hine 2003

    Sonny Hine was born in The Bronx, New York, on Jan. 9, 1931, and became a full-time trainer on the Maryland circuit in 1957.

Bud Delp Grover G. "Bud" Delp 2002

   Buddy Delp saddled his first winner at Maryland’s Laurel Park in 1962 and won his first meet title there a year later.

Richard Mandella Richard Mandella 2001

   A California native and the son of a blacksmith, Richard Mandella began breaking and galloping horses for Connie Ring at Three Rings Ranch while still in high school.

Neil Drysdale Neil Drysdale 2000

   Born in Surrey, England, Neil Drysdale held a number of posts in showing and racing in Britain, Venezuela and the United States before joining Saron Stable as head trainer in 1974.

Tom Smith 2000

   Tom Smith was born in a log cabin in the woods of northwest Georgia in 1878. As a young man, he trained horses for the United States Cavalry and worked on a cattle ranch.

D. Wayne Lukas 1999

   In detailing a career overflowing with record-setting, one quickly runs out of adjectives to describe D. Wayne Lukas’ achievements.

Ansel Williamson 1998

   Known in contemporary accounts as “Old Ansel,” the exact dates of this legendary trainer’s career have been lost.

William I. Mott 1998

   Bill Mott’s career began in South Dakota, where he owned and trained horses with other members of his family.

Michael G. Walsh 1997

   Mickey Walsh trained steeplechase horses for half a century and produced 31 stakes winners, including the champion King Commander.

P. G. Johnson Phillip G. Johnson 1997

   A Chicago native, Phil “P.G.” Johnson bought his first Thoroughbred in 1942. The $75 auction purchase named Song Master became Johnson’s first winner two years later at Hawthorne Race Course.

James P. Conway 1996

   James Conway worked a variety of backstretch jobs before beginning his professional training career following World War II. 

Bobby Frankel Robert J. Frankel 1995

   A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Bobby Frankel began his equine career as a hot walker at Belmont and Aqueduct. His first victory as a trainer came in November 1966 at Aqueduct.

Warren A. Croll Jr. 1994

   Warren A. “Jimmy” Croll received his trainer’s license in 1940 and sent out his first winner later that year.

Thomas J. Kelly 1993

   Tommy Kelly was born on Sept. 19, 1919 in Baltimore and began working at the racetrack as a teenager, learning the business from the bottom up.

Scotty Schulhofer Flint S. Schulhofer 1992

   Flint “Scotty” Schulhofer began working with Thoroughbreds as a teenager in Aiken, S.C.

Mesh Tenney 1991

   Born on Nov. 16, 1907, Arizona native Mesh Tenney trained 36 stakes winners in his career, including Hall of Famer Swaps, the 1955 Kentucky Derby winner and the 1956 Horse of the Year.

Jonathan Sheppard 1990

   Jonathan Sheppard has without question earned his place as the leading American steeplechase trainer of all time.

Ron McAnally 1990

   A native of Covington, Ky., Ron McAnally began his career in thoroughbred racing at Rockingham Park in New Hampshire working for his uncle, trainer Reggie Cornell.

James W. Maloney 1989

     The son of a trainer, James Maloney got his start in the sport by breaking horses for his father and competing in horse shows in Connecticu

Angel Penna 1988

   Angel Penna was born Sept. 30, 1923 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. His father, father-in-law and an uncle were all trainers.

Jacob Pincus 1988

   Jacob Pincus’ training career encompassed the latter half of the 19th century. He is best known for conditioning the first American-bred to win the Epsom Derby in England.

LeRoy Jolley 1987

   A native of Hot Springs, Ark., LeRoy Jolley learned the craft of thoroughbred training at the knee of his father, Moody.

MacKenzie Miller 1987

MacKenzie T. “Mack” Miller born Oct. 16, 1921 in Versailles, Ky. Known as the “Gentleman Trainer,” during a 46-year career, Miller conditioned 72 stakes winners, including four champions.

Burley Parke 1986

   Burley Parke was born in Albion, Idaho, on March 21, 1905. He was one of 12 children, and four of his seven brothers also went into the racing industry.

William Ransom Johnson 1986

   When Thoroughbred racing was America’s leading national sport, William R. Johnson, known as the “Napoleon of the Turf,” was the game’s most prominent figure.

Jack C. Van Berg 1985

   Jack Van Berg followed in the footsteps of his father, Hall of Fame trainer Marion Van Berg.

W. Burling Cocks 1985

   A successful amateur jockey, Burling Cocks turned to training after a life-threatening spill. He went on to enjoy a career of 50-plus years as an elite steeplechase trainer.

Edward D. Brown 1984

Born into slavery in Fayette County, Ky., in 1850 (some sources say 1848), Edward Dudley Brown developed into an accomplished jockey before becoming one of the top trainers of the 19th century.

 

Harry Trotsek 1984

   Born in Cicero, Ill., in 1910, Harry Trotsek proved adept at handling all types of Thoroughbreds.

Edward A. Neloy 1983

  Eddie Neloy quit school for the racetrack at age 14 and – with the exception of service in World War II – spent the rest of his life at the races.

John E. Madden 1983

   John Edward Madden was born on Dec. 28, 1856 in Bethlehem, Pa. He began his career as an owner, trainer and driver of Standardbreds.

Henry S. Clark 1982

   Henry S. Clark was born into a family with longstanding ties to Thoroughbred racing.

William J. Hirsch 1982

   William “Buddy” Hirsch followed in the footsteps of his father, Hall of Famer Max Hirsch, even though the elder Hirsch was against his son entering the training business.

Frank "Pancho" Martin 1981

   Frank “Pancho” Martin’s career began in his native Cuba, where he worked his way up from hotwalker to trainer by age 16. By the time he turned 21, Martin was racing Cuban horses in Ohio.

Horatio A. Luro 1980

   Horatio Luro was born on Feb. 27, 1901 in Argentina into a wealthy family that had been involved with horses for generations. Well connected, he was friends with the social and business elite.

J. Elliott Burch 1980

A third-generation horseman who followed both his father and grandfather into the Hall of Fame, Elliott Burch trained six champions and four members of the Hall of Fame, including Horse of the Year winners Sword Dancer, Arts and Letters and Fort Marcy.

 

Lazaro S. Barrera 1979

A native of Havana, Cuba, Lazaro Barrera became the first person to win the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Trainer four consecutive years (1976 through 1979) and trained America’s 11th Triple Crown winner, Affirmed, as well as Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes winner Bold Forbes.

 

Frank Whiteley Jr. 1978

   In a career that spanned almost half a century, Frank Whiteley trained numerous stakes winners and four champions.

Sherrill W. Ward 1978

   Sherrill Ward learned the craft of Thoroughbred conditioning from his father, who was also a trainer.

Lucien Laurin 1977

   Lucien Laurin was born March 18, 1912 in Joliette, Quebec, Canada, and began his career with Thoroughbreds as a jockey in 1929 at Blue Bonnets Raceway in Montreal.

Sylvester Veitch 1977

 Sylvester Veitch began his career as a jockey and trainer of steeplechase horses. He switched to flat racing in 1939 and began working for C.V. Whitney, for whom he conditioned four champions.

Robert A. Smith 1976

   Robert Smith’s good nature led to his being known as “Whistling Bob.” Born in 1869 in Newburgh, N.Y., Smith ran away from home at a young age and sold newspapers to support himself before going

Woodford Stephens 1976

   Born Woodford Cefis Stephens in Stanton, Ky., “Woody” was a jockey at age 16 and began working on the backstretch for trainer John Ward.

G. Carey Winfrey 1975

   George Carey Winfrey was born in Wills Point, Texas, in 1885.

H. Allen Jerkens 1975

In a career that spanned from 1950 through 2015, Allen Jerkens won 3,859 races and earned the respect and adoration of his peers and multiple generations of race fans.

 

Charles Whittingham 1974

   A leading West Coast trainer, California native Charles Whittingham is considered by most accounts one of the greatest Thoroughbred trainers of the 20th century.

Fred Burlew 1973

   Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, on March 20, 1871, Fred Burlew began as a stablehand at age 11, rode a few horses, and was training a stable of 50 for Dan Hoenig by age 18.

Hollie Hughes 1973

  Hollie Hughes was born on a small farm near Amsterdam, N.Y., in 1888. For more than 70 years, Hughes was associated with the Sanford family of New York and their racing operation.

Thomas Hitchcock 1973

   Born in New York City on Nov. 12, 1860, Thomas Hitchcock was a true sportsman and is commonly referred to as the father of American steeplechasing.

John Nerud 1972

   John Nerud was born on a ranch in Minatare, Neb., on Feb. 9, 1913. He worked as a rodeo cowboy and a groom in his youth before turning to training Thoroughbreds. 

D.M. Smithwick 1971

   Daniel Michael “Mikey” Smithwick was an accomplished amateur steeplechase jockey – winning a record six Maryland Hunt Cup races – before he turned to training jumpers in the early 1950s.

H. Guy Bedwell 1971

H. Guy Bedwell led all North American trainers in wins seven times and in earnings twice during his illustrious career and trained America’s first Triple Crown winner, Sir Barton, as well as several other standouts.

 

William C. Winfrey 1971

  Born in Detroit in 1916, Bill Winfrey was the stepson of Hall of Fame trainer G. Carey Winfrey. Bill Winfrey quit school at age 15 to become a jockey.

Marion Van Berg 1970

   Born on Jan. 15, 1896 at Aurora, Neb., Marion Van Berg enjoyed a lifetime of success in Thoroughbred racing.

R. W. Walden 1970

   Born in 1843, Robert Wyndham Walden was one of the most successful trainers of the 19th century.

Herbert J. Thompson 1969

  Born in Detroit on Sept. 21, 1881, Herbert J. Thompson started out his career working with harness horses before switching to Thoroughbreds in 1902 when he began an association with E.J.

J. Howard Lewis 1969

  J. Howard Lewis was an outstanding steeplechase rider in the 1880s before moving on to a successful career as a trainer of jumpers.

Frank E. Childs 1968
W.F. Mulholland 1967

   Winbert F. “Bert” Mulholland was born Aug. 27, 1883 in Lexington, Ky. He began his association with Thoroughbreds as an exercise rider for his uncle, W.C. “Farmer Bill” Scully.

John M. Gaver, Sr. 1966

   John M. Gaver, Sr. took an unusual path to training Thoroughbreds. After graduating from Princeton University, Gaver worked as a language teacher and wrestling coach at a prep school.

Louis Feustel 1964

    Born Jan. 2, 1884 in Maryland, Louis Feustel is best known as the trainer of the mighty Man o’ War, considered by many to be the greatest Thoroughbred of all time.

Preston M. Burch 1963

The son of Hall of Fame trainer William Burch and the father of Hall of Fame trainer Elliott Burch, Preston Burch enjoyed success as a breeder, owner and trainer of racehorses for himself and others both in America and overseas for more than a half-century.

 

William Molter 1960

   William Molter was born in Fredericksburg, Texas in 1910. He enjoyed success as a jockey before turning to training.

Horace A. "Jimmy" Jones 1959

   The son of Hall of Fame trainer Ben A. Jones, Jimmy Jones was born in Parnell, Mo., on Nov. 24, 1906. He worked with his father for Woolford Farm until 1939 when they moved to Calumet Farm.

Maximilian Hirsch 1959

   Max Hirsch was born in Fredericksburg, Texas in 1880. He got into racing by riding Thoroughbreds in local fairs during his youth. Hirsch was noticed by John A.

Benjamin A. Jones 1958

   Ben Jones was born in 1883 in Parnell, Mo. His father, the town’s founder and owner of the Parnell Bank, had visions of his son someday replacing him as the bank’s president.

Hirsch Jacobs 1958

   Born in New York City on April 8, 1904, Hirsch Jacobs achieved success as a trainer, owner, and breeder of Thoroughbreds.

James Fitzsimmons 1958

    James Edward “Sunny Jim” Fitzsimmons was born only July 23, 1874 in Brooklyn, New York. As a 10-year-old, he went to work as a stable boy at Sheepshead Bay before becoming a jockey.

Henry McDaniel 1956

   The ability to train Thoroughbreds was bred into the soul of New Jersey native Henry McDaniel. His father, Col.

John J. Hyland 1956

   In the late 19th century, when the Futurity at Sheepshead Bay was the richest race in America, trainer John J. Hyland won it three times in a five-year span.

William Duke 1956

   William Duke enjoyed tremendous success as a trainer overseas in England and France and soared to the top of the sport in America late in his career.

Andrew Jackson Joyner 1955

James G. Rowe Sr. 1955

    James Gordon Rowe was one of the finest jockeys in America during the 1870s, winning such prestigious races as the Belmont, Travers, Saratoga Cup and Jerome Handicap.

John W. Rogers 1955

   A native of Louisiana, John W. Rogers trained trotters before getting his start with thoroughbreds around 1880 in the Midwest with the extensive stable of Ed Corrigan.

Samuel C. Hildreth 1955

   Samuel Clay Hildreth, the youngest of Vincent and Mary Hildreth’s 10 children, enjoyed success as a trainer in the Midwest for owners Elias J.

Thomas J. Healey 1955

The son of a dairy farmer, Thomas Jeremiah Healey was born just south of the old Jerome Park racetrack in New York City. At the age of 15, Healey took his first job in racing in the stable of E.

William P. Burch 1955

William Preston Burch, a South Carolina native, served as a courier in the Confederate States Army during the Civil War before getting involved with quarter horses at fairs in the South. He transitioned to training thoroughbreds around 1866, basing his stable in Washington, D.C.