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Debating with your friends whoโ€™s the best Horse Racing trainer?

Bob Baffert, Todd Pletcher, or Aidan O’Brien?

Here is our list of the best Horse Racing trainers of all time.

Do you agree with our picks?

Best Horse Racing Trainers:

  1. Bob Baffert
  2. Todd Pletcher
  3. Aidan O’Brien
  4. Sir Michael Stoute
  5. Charlie Appleby

#1 Bob Baffert

  • ๐Ÿ† Achievements: Multiple Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes wins; two Triple Crown winners
  • ๐Ÿ“… Years Active: 1979โ€“Present
  • ๐ŸŽ Horses Trained: American Pharoah, Justify, Arrogate, Silver Charm
  • ๐ŸŒ Nationality: American

Bob Baffert is one of the most recognizable figures in horse racing, known for his distinctive white hair and remarkable record in American Thoroughbred racing.

He has trained two Triple Crown winners: American Pharoah in 2015 and Justify in 2018. His successes in the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes have cemented his status as a top trainer.

Baffert’s career has not been without controversy, facing multiple medication violations and scrutiny over the health and safety of his horses. Despite this, his success at the track has earned him a place among the elite horse racing trainers.

#2 Todd Pletcher

  • ๐Ÿ† Achievements: Multiple Eclipse Awards for Outstanding Trainer, several wins in American Classic races
  • ๐Ÿ“… Years Active: 1996โ€“Present
  • ๐ŸŽ Horses Trained: Always Dreaming, Super Saver, Rags to Riches
  • ๐ŸŒ Nationality: American

Todd Pletcher stands as one of the most accomplished trainers in North American horse racing with a career featuring numerous American Classic victories.

He has an impressive roster of horses that have claimed victories in prestigious races, including the Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes.

Pletcher is particularly known for his ability to develop young talent and prepare horses for their most challenging races. His methodical approach to training and consistency in producing top-tier racehorses have earned him a reputation as a leading figure in the industry.

#3 Aidan O’Brien

  • ๐Ÿ† Achievements: Multiple Irish Classic and British Classic wins; numerous Group 1 races
  • ๐Ÿ“… Years Active: 1993โ€“Present
  • ๐ŸŽ Horses Trained: Galileo, High Chaparral, Yeats
  • ๐ŸŒ Nationality: Irish

Aidan O’Brien is a titan of horse racing, especially renowned for his exploits in Ireland and the UK, where he has been crowned the champion trainer multiple times.

His training base at Ballydoyle has produced a slew of champions that have won some of the most prestigious races in Europe, including the Epsom Derby and the 2,000 Guineas.

The impact of O’Brien’s training expertise is felt internationally, with successes in the Breeders’ Cup and other global events. His meticulous attention to pedigree and form has made him a dominant force in thoroughbred racing.

#4 Sir Michael Stoute

  • ๐Ÿ† Achievements: Multiple Classic races in the UK; multiple times UK Champion Trainer
  • ๐Ÿ“… Years Active: 1972โ€“Present
  • ๐ŸŽ Horses Trained: Shergar, Workforce, Frankel (as a part of his career)
  • ๐ŸŒ Nationality: British

Sir Michael Stoute is a revered name in British horse racing, having been an influential trainer with a career spanning over several decades.

He has trained the winners of all five British Classics, including a noteworthy victory with the legendary Shergar in the 1981 Epsom Derby.

Knighted for his services to racing, Sir Michael’s long-lasting success is attributed to his profound understanding of horse psychology and his adaptive training techniques. His high standards and dedication have made him a respected figure in the racing community.

#5 Charlie Appleby

  • ๐Ÿ† Achievements: Epsom Derby victory; successes in the Breeders’ Cup
  • ๐Ÿ“… Years Active: 2013โ€“Present
  • ๐ŸŽ Horses Trained: Masar, Blue Point, Ghaiyyath
  • ๐ŸŒ Nationality: British

Charlie Appleby, representing the powerful Godolphin racing operation, quickly established himself as a top-tier trainer after taking over the role in 2013.

Achieving international success, including a memorable win at the Epsom Derby with Masar, Appleby has proved his ability to prepare horses for the biggest stages.

Known for his thoughtful and analytical approach to training, he has earned accolades and commendations within the highly competitive European racing scene. His career continues to flourish with notable wins in prestigious global racing events.


Who is the greatest horse racing trainer of all time?

Bob Baffert is often considered the greatest horse racing trainer, with multiple Kentucky Derby and Triple Crown victories.

Who was the most successful horse racing trainer?

Dale Baird holds the record for the most wins, with over 9,445 victories, making him the most successful horse racing trainer by wins.

Max is a sports enthusiast who loves all kinds of ball and water sports. He founded & runs stand-up-paddling.org (#1 German Paddleboarding Blog), played competitive Badminton and Mini Golf (competed on national level in Germany), started learning โ€˜realโ€™ Golf and dabbled in dozens of other sports & activities.

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