Location: Westminster, MD
The most important thing in dealing with horses is patience. Every animal is unique. It takes a bit of time to acclimate a horse to a new situation and observe how he reacts to his surroundings. I assess a horse that is new to me by watching how he is with other horses in the pasture, how he relaxes in the barn, how he interacts with people and how he responds to a rider on his back. Does he eat well? If the answers to those questions are positive, then that horse is happy…and a happy horse will be happy in his work and open and willing to doing what you ask him to do. Some horses come to you very exuberant and happy to work; others need to adjust to a new situation, relax and see they can trust the people and environment around them. The keys to training successful horse are observation, patience, and trust. A 160-pound rider cannot make 1,200-pound horse do something he doesn’t want to do. Training is a partnership. You have to first understand the horse to develop a happy and willing partner.
My Experience and Background
I was raised on my family’s farm outside Waterford, Ireland. Although we didn’t have horses, I was fascinated by racing. I began riding at the age 15 and at 18 enrolled in the British Racing School in Newmarket. After completing my course of study, I got my first job in Sir Mark Prescott’s yard in Newmarket, where I did pretty much everything—riding, grooming, traveling to races with his horses. After four years there, I joined Bill Turner in Somerset, England, who had a reputation for training young, precocious flat and jump horses. It was while I worked for Bill that I got my jockey’s license. Four years later I went to five-time British jump champion trainer Nicky Henderson’s yard in Lambourn. While I was there, I came to the U.S. during the summers of 1998 to 2000 to work with Hall of Fame trainer Jonathan Sheppard. In 2000, I became the stable jockey for another Hall of Famer trainer, Tom Voss, and I stayed with him for nine years. I always knew that I wanted to train, so when I left Tom’s and retired from riding races, training became my focus. Six and a half years ago, I accepted my current position as trainer for Irv and Diane Naylor at their Stillwater Farm in the Greenspring Valley. I also maintain my own public training operation at Ballymoat, my farm outside Westminster, Maryland.
I have both trained and ridden multiple graded stakes winners. I trained back-to-back Eclipse award winners Dawalan (2015) and Rawnaq (2016) for the Naylors. To date, I am the only person to have won the Grand National Hurdle (Grade 1), as a trainer (with Dawalan and Rawnaq) and as a jockey (aboard Quel Senor). As a jockey I won numerous graded races, including the Crown Royal Stakes, the AP Smithwick Memorial (Grade I), the Zeke Ferguson Hurdle Stakes (Grade II), the Appleton, Michael G. Walsh Novice, the Valentine Memorial at Fair Hill, and set a Saratoga Racecourse track record for the 2 1/16-mile hurdle race aboard Equistar. As a trainer I have won: • Iroquois Steeplechase (Grade I) • Colonial Cup (Grade I) • Two Grand National Hurdle Stakes (Grade I) • Two Zeke Ferguson Hurdle Stakes (Grade II) • David Semmes (Grade II) • National Hunt Cup (Grade III) • Two Pennsylvania Hunt Cups • Two Temple Gwathmey Hurdle Handicaps (Grade III) • Two Virginia Gold Cups • Two New Jersey Hunt Cups • Two Noel Laings ' • The Peapack • My Lady’s Manor • 2nd, Valedictory Stakes (Grade III, flat)
Arch Kingsley Jr.
Location: Camden, SC
My focus has never been on large quantities of horses, but more on finding the balance between the numbers required to be successful, and keeping the quality of my work and horses at the highest end. Many of the victories that I have enjoyed have been totally out of the public eye, and on a more personal level. I am most proud of the relationships that I have built throughout my career. I have enjoyed the support and connection of countless owners, horses, employees, jockeys, racing officials, and teachers. It is at the core of my philosophy that my ability to help to bring out the greatest and the best in the horses and the people that I share my skills with, is the most complete expression of my own spiritual path in life. I see my relationships and accomplishments as a joyful reflection of that journey.
My Experience and Background
I am a lifelong horseman that has grown up in and around the sport of steeplechasing. Both of my parents were accomplished jump riders on the Point-to-Point scene in Virginia in the 60ʼs and 70ʼs. I grew up fox hunting from an early age. As an adolescent into adulthood, I was mentored by some of the best horse trainers, and horse people alive. As a jockey my career was blessed with many high moments, including a national championship, multiple money-won titles, and countless stakes wins. I competed with some of the best men and women riders this country has ever produced, and consistently enjoyed the favor of the sportʼs leading trainers and owners.
As a trainer, some of my proudest achievements include the multiple stakes winners that I have managed, relative to modest numbers that I have trained. From autumn through late spring, my operation is based out of Camden, SC. My stable has been built there around the lasting legacy and generous philanthropy of some of the sportʼs most generous and visionary participants. The climate and land of Camden has given me a tremendous advantage in developing horses to their greatest abilities. In turn, Camden has proven an effective springboard to my horses as we have launched many productive campaigns around the East. In late spring through early fall, I often relocate to the racetracks in the North and mid-Atlantic for the grass racing season. Going forward I want to attract more owners that share my vision of developing top-class thoroughbreds to race on the flat and over jumps.
Phone: (540) 974-5772
Location: Middleburg, VA
I love horses, I love training them. As a trainer, I work to figure out what horses want, need and enjoy in life--how they want or don’t want be trained. I like happy horses. Most horses like to be outside, and most of mine live out as much as is comfortable for them; they eat, relax and enjoy each other’s company and I have multiple paddocks to make this possible. They spend most of the day inside for training and care. I have a fabulous staff committed to the success and well-being of my horses, and my riders are able to ride or school my hurdle and timber horses. I hunt any of the horses that are game to participate, I find hunting with the Aiken Hounds a nice day out for the horses during the winter.
My Experience and Background
Growing up in Oregon left me little choice in my riding career, especially coming from a family who had never been involved with horses in any way. I started riding when I was 12 and competed in 3-day eventing as a kid and eventually moved to Unionville, PA, to work with Bruce Davidson. Through the years I made my way down to Middleburg, VA, all the while galloping racehorses for different flat and jump trainers as I was competing in eventing. I usually had off-the-track racehorses that I evented, so have always been involved in teaching horses from the flat track how to jump and go across terrain. I had several advanced level event horses and won the Rolex 3-day event at the Kentucky Horse Park. While I was galloping horses for Dorothy “Dot” Smithwick, all of a sudden I learned she had entered me in the Ladies Timber race at the Casonova Hunt Point to Point. I was immediately hooked on timber racing. At the same time, eventing was changing to a format that was less friendly for the fitness and durability of thoroughbreds. So, I decided to quit eventing and commit to steeplechase full time. Because of my evening background, all of my horses are very well schooled and have the ability to do proper flatwork, jump gymnastics and jump show courses. I find it very important for soundness and training for the horses to become almost ambidextrous in their training, especially after galloping left handed around a track their entire lives. I give thanks to my many NSA and flat trainer friends who have helped educate my training practices through the years. I’ve had extremely supportive owners and some wonderful horses.
Thanks to supportive owners, I’ve had a number of nice horses. Oakwood Farm’s Country Cousin won the Zeke Ferguson Stake (GIII), the National Cup Novice Stakes and was placed in several other graded stakes. Stonelea Stable’s Balance the Budget is a multiple stakes winner (Carolina Cup, Zeke Ferguson (GII), Budweiser Imperial Cup (GIII). Greg Ryan’s Dynatonia won the Marcellus Frost (GIII). Mike Smith’s Le Chevalier won the New Jersey Hunt Cup. Oakwood Farm’s Kensington Court is a Saratoga allowance winner and stakes placed. Bon Nouvel Chasers’ Menacing Dennis was the 2017 3YO Champion, winning the Gladstone Stakes at Far Hills. Oakwood Farm’s Virginia Minstrel and Chuck Akre’s Sporty are both stakes placed. I’m most proud of winning some nice races with relatively inexpensive horses like Country Cousin, Balance the Budget, Kensington Court and others. I’m also proud that so many of our horses find third careers as foxhunters and event prospects.
Phone: (215) 518-0604
Location: Unionville, PA
Success is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. When it comes to horses, I believe preparation is the absolute key to success. Because my job is to find and, often times, create, success for each horse under my care--be it over jumps, on the flat, or anything in between--I focus primarily on two objectives: preparation and placement. Preparing a horse to run successfully requires that it be fit for the intended race, which begins with choosing the race and then working backwards to map out the horse’s course of training. I utilize all tools available to me, including my farm’s facilities for flatwork, schooling (hurdles and timber), and galloping, the rolling hills of Chester County, Pennsylvania, the all-weather Tapeta training track at the Fair Hill Equine Training Center, the swimming pool at Maui Meadows, the Cheshire Fox Hunt, the Springdale Training Center in Camden, SC, and many cutting edge equine therapies offered by local providers. Because I primarily train the horses off of my farm, they are turned out daily and, often times, live in grass paddocks where they can enjoy being horses.
My Experience and Background
I started racing ponies at the age of 9. When I won my first race on TinkerBell, I was hooked. At 13, I acquired Twin Nora, and she won 27 straight races with me as her pilot. At 16, I began riding sanctioned races and won my first flat race at Aiken aboard Popular Hero for Skip Brittle. Later that summer, I won my first jump race on T V Warrant for my parents. During that time, I worked for W. Burling Cocks and continued under his tutelage for my entire career as a jockey, which lasted a decade. In 1986, I won my first champion jockey title and Mr. Cocks was champion trainer. I rode the wave into the next year and earned champion jockey for a second time. All in all, my jockey career ended with 130 winners, ranking 24th on the all-time rider’s win list. In 1991, I started training horses in my own right.
Sly Bandit was my first winner trained in 1991, and from there it was all history. Particular standouts include: 1996 Champion Timber Horse, Where’s Pepo, 2001 Champion 3 Year Old, Beaux Beau; 2004 Grade I Iroquois and New York Turf Writer’s winner, Très Touché (currently, 13th leading horse over jumps); 2006 Champion 3 Year Old, Jimmie Echo; 2007 Champion 3 Year Old, CR’s Deputy; and, somewhere along the line two Champion Claimer’s, Corruption and Eagle Beagle. More recently, 2017 was a banner year, highlighted by my mother’s Surprising Soul winning the Marcellus Frost Novice Race ($100k), George Mahoney’s Swansea Mile winning the Grade I A.P. Smithwick ($150k), and Ben Griswold’s and George Mahoney’s Zanjabeel winning the Aflac Supreme Novice Race ($75k), all contributing to a second place in trainer standings with 14 wins from 57 starters. Currently, 10th on all-time leading trainers list with $4,093,948 in earnings.
Phone: (443) 834-2109
Location: Butler, MD
I’ve spent nearly three decades of my life on the back of a horse as a jump jockey, so my focus is on the horse and what it can tell me. Along with my staff, I school every single horse in the barn on a regular basis. There are things about a horse that you can only tell being on their back and that’s what I think I bring to training that is unique. I run a happy barn. The people who work here love what they do and the horses know it. Racing has been such a rewarding experience for me that I like to pass that on by training jockeys, as well as horses. It’s a thrill to help an owner/rider to their first, race, their first placing and their first big win. I also enjoy sharing the experience of race horse ownership with people new to the sport. I specialize in small syndicates and smaller owners. Every day in my barn is a positive experience.
My Experience and Background
Growing up in Ireland, it’s hard not to be involved with horses. I’ve been riding race horses my entire life. My first summer job was working for leading flat trainer Jim Bolger. At 18 I moved to England and worked for top steeplechase trainer Lenny Lungo, where I rode many winners for him over a ten year period. In 2005 I moved to the United States to ride for leading steeplechase trainer Jack Fisher, where I found my horse of a lifetime, Good Night Shirt, who in 2017 was inducted into the Hall of Fame in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Trained by Fisher throughout his jumps career and ridden by me for the vast majority of it, Good Night Shirt was the Eclipse Award champion steeplechase horse in 2007 and 2008. He won eight Grade 1 races and was undefeated in 2008, when he broke his 2007 record for single-season earnings with $485,520 in purse winnings. Among our Grade 1 victories were the Iroquois Steeplechase, Lonesome Glory Handicap, and Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup, all of which we won twice, and the 2008 editions of the Grand National and the Atlanta Cup. Shirt was retired midway through the 2009 season and currently ranks second on the all-time earnings list with $1,006,493 in purses.
In 2014 I retired as a jockey and set up my training operation out of Wit’s End Stable in Butler, Maryland. I like to keep about 15 horses in training, mostly timber, but several flat and hurdle horses, as well. I have enjoyed many satisfying wins in that time and have brought several new owners and jockeys to the sport.
Phone: (443) 695-3780
Location: Monkton, MD
I put the well being of the horses first, always. However, this in turn, puts the owners interest first, as well. My boutique stable ensures your horse will have MY full attention as well as the attention of my talented staff. I take pride in keeping my horses happy and healthy. Happy and healthy horses will always give you that little bit extra to get the job done and WIN. I enjoy and excel at developing young horses to reach their full potential by understanding which division suits them best and placing them where they can WIN. My extraordinary horsemanship facilitates an environment in which your horse will have a long and successful career. When it does come time for a horse to retire, the cross training methods I use quickly and profitably transition horses into their next career.
My Experience and Background
I grew up riding in Pony Club and competing nationally on the horse show and eventing circuits, ranking nationally. I attained my C-3 level in pony club at age 17 before leaving home to pursue my passion, a career in racing. I have worked for some of the top trainers including, Ken McPeek, Ann Merryman and Catherine Robinson on the racetrack as well as Tom Voss, Jack Fisher, Bruce Miller and Lilith Boucher in steeplechasing. At the age of 19, in the midst of completing my bachelors degree in psychology at Towson University, I arranged the breeding of my first homebred, Farah T Salute. After breeding, raising and training the Boy Done Good filly, she went out to win in her first start on the flat at Colonial Downs. Farah T Salute would go on to win one more on the flat before switching to steeplechasing. Over hurdles she became a multiple stakes winner. At eight years old, Farah T Salute retired sound and sane, ready for a new chapter in her life. She now enjoys retirement as a lead pony, schooling partner, school master for kids learning how to jump hurdles, show horse, fox hunter and anything else I ask of her. I come from a background of horsemen. My father is a highly regarded farrier in New Jersey who also uses draft horses to pull farm machinery on his organic farm. My mother trains event horses, some of which have come from my racing string and have gone on to successful eventing careers. My younger sister, Rosie Napravnik, recently retired as one of the top jockeys in the country and now trains OTTBs for eventing.
I have been called "Queens of the Fillies" more than once. Not surprising considering my biggest wins have come from some of my smallest fillies. Homebred Farah T Salute gave me my first stakes win at Palm Beach and another in Georgia at Callaway Gardens. A former $5,000 claimer, Green Velvet won steeplechasing's biggest filly and mare race at Far Hills as a maiden, in her third career jump start; she would go on to win at Fair Hill the following spring, as well. I brought Bau Bai Gold home from Beulah Park after she was beaten 40 lengths in a $3,500 maiden claimer and proceeded to train her to multiple stakes placings and nearly Filly/Mare Champion of the year had she not had an unfortunate accident the morning of the last race of the year. I love the challenge of polishing a diamond in the rough others have passed by.