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Birth Date: June 18, 1946
Birth Place: Akron, Ohio
Inducted into the National Racing Museum’s Hall of Fame on Aug. 12, 2011, in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Is the fourth winningest trainer in North American thoroughbred racing history. Through June 29, 2011, he had 5,970 career victories.
Ranks eighth on the all-time earnings list for trainers. Through June 29, 2011, his horses had earned $122,369,199 in purses.
Achieved a career-high in stable earnings in 2010 when his runners earned $9,307,328, a figure that ranked him fourth in the nation in money won.
Earned his first Breeders’ Cup victory on Nov. 6 at Churchill Downs when he won the
$1 million Dirt Mile with Dakota Phone, who paid $77.40 to win.
Orchestrated a title-winning 2010 campaign for Blind Luck, who earned the Eclipse Award as champion 3-year-old filly after winning the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks, Grade 1 Alabama Stakes, Grade 1 Las Virgenes Stakes, Grade 2 Fantasy, and Grade 2 Delaware Oaks.
Notched another Grade 1 stakes win with Blind Luck in 2011 when she captured the Vanity Handicap at Hollywood Park.
Has won the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks, the filly equivalent of the Kentucky Derby, three times – with Lite Light in 1991, Pike Place Dancer in 1996, and Blind Luck in 2010.
His victory with Pike Place Dancer in the 1996 California Derby at Golden Gate Fields marked the first time a filly had won the race since Miz Clementine defeated the colts in the 1954 California Derby.
Has had four starters in the Kentucky Derby – Chocolate Candy (who finished fifth in the 2009 Derby), Bwana Bull (15th in the 2007 Derby), Cause to Believe (13th in the 2006 Derby) and Eye of the Tiger (fifth in the 2003 Derby).
Prior to Eye of the Tiger, he had a string of bad luck in trying to get horses into the Kentucky Derby field. Event of the Year (1998) and Globalize (2000) both sustained injuries while training at Churchill Downs, and U S S Tinosa (2002) didn’t get into the starting lineup due to a lack of earnings.
Trained the ill-fated Tuscan Evening, who was in the midst of undefeated 2010 season
(6-for-6 with wins in the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes, Grade 2 Buena Vista Handicap,
Grade 2 Santa Ana Handicap, Grade 2 Santa Barbara Handicap, Grade 3 Monrovia Handicap, and Grade 3 Modesty Handicap) when she died of an acute pulmonary hemorrhage following a workout.
Won the 5,000th race of his career on Dec. 22, 2007, when his 4-year-old gelding Political High won the 11th race at Hollywood Park.
From 1986 though May 2008, he won the training championship at every major Bay Area meeting, recording 37 straight titles at Bay Meadows and 32 consecutive crowns at Golden Gate Fields. Title streak was snapped when he finished tied for second at the 2008 GGF spring meeting, a season in which William E. Morey took the crown.
Hollendorfer came right back to take the training titles at the 2008 fall meeting, the 2008-2009 winter/spring season, the 2009 fall/winter meeting, and the 2009-2010 winter/spring meeting.
Hollendorfer most recently captured the training crown at the 2010-2011 winter/spring meeting, giving him 38 career championships at Golden Gate Fields.
Has also captured training championships at Arlington Park (2001) in Arlington Heights, Illinois, and Thistledown (2004 Summit Meeting) in North Randall, Ohio.
His runners earned $8,637,578 in 2008, a figure that ranked him seventh in the nation in earnings.
Amassed $7,309,169 in stable earnings in 2009 to rank fifth in the nation in money won.
Ranked third in the nation in victories in 2009 with 273. Was also third in the nation in wins in 2008 with 282 victories.
Finished second in the nation in victories in both 1998 (241 wins) and 1999 (224).
Won a career high 308 races in 2004 when he finished third in the nation in races won.
Also ranked third in the nation in victories in 2005 (281 wins) and 2001 (263)
His barn topped the $6 million mark in earnings in 1998 ($6,447,301), 2003 ($6,262,447), and 2004 ($6,009,234)
Won the $1 million Santa Anita Handicap, the West Coast’s most prestigious Grade I stakes, with Heatseeker in 2008.
Only 3 1/2 months after winning the Santa Anita Handicap, he captured another
$1 million race – the Delaware Handicap with Hystericalady.
He also sent out Hystericalady to win the Humana Distaff Handicap and Molly Pitcher Breeders’ Cup in 2007 and the Hollywood Breeders’ Cup Oaks in 2006.
Scored his first victory in a million-dollar race in 1988 when he sent out King Glorious to win the Hollywood Futurity. Also won the 1989 Haskell Invitational and 1989 Ohio Derby with King Glorious.
His 2009 stakes triumphs included a victory in the Grade 1 Oak Leaf Stakes with Blind Luck, and a win in the Grade 2 $250,000 Royal Heroine Mile with Tuscan Evening, and a triumph in the Grade 2 Del Mar Derby with Rendezvous.
Has trained many other major stakes winners, including: Event of the Year (winner of the Jim Beam Stakes and El Camino Real Derby in 1998), Somethinaboutlaura (A Gleam Handicap, 2006-2007); Chocolate Candy (El Camino Real Derby and California Derby, 2009), Bwana Bull (El Camino Real Derby and California Derby, 2007); Skipshot (Swaps Stakes, 2010), Trickey Trevor (Churchill Downs Handicap, 2006), Adreamisborn (Longacres Mile, 2004; Stanford Breeders’ Cup Handicap, 2005); Ninebanks (San Francisco Breeders’ Cup Mile, 2003; Golden Gate Breeders’ Cup Handicap, 2003), Yougottawanna (El Camino Real Derby, 2002; Seabiscuit Breeders’ Cup Handicap, 2004-2005), Fleet Lady (El Encino Stakes and La Canada Stakes, 1998); City to City (Providencia Stakes, 2010), and Variety Road (William P. Kyne Handicap, 1990-91; Tanforan Handicap, 1988).
Shares the Northern California record for most wins by a trainer on a single card, five, with Ace Gibson and Walter Greenman. Hollendorfer has won five races on a card three times – once at Golden Gate Fields (May 1, 1986) and twice at Bay Meadows (Jan. 23, 1997, and May 26, 2004). Greenman established the record at Bay Meadows on Nov. 25, 1970, and Gibson equaled the mark at Golden Gate Fields on Feb. 24, 1971.
Had a streak of eight consecutive winners in 1996.
Came to California in the late 1960s and never left. Started as a groom at Bay Meadows and went on to work in various capacities for trainers Jerry Dutton and Jerry Fanning before taking out his trainer's license in 1979.
Success did not come quickly as he compiled no more than 16 wins in any of his first six years of training. Had breakout year in 1985 when he won 56 races – only three shy of the grand total of 59 races he won during his first six years of training.
Won 117 races and saw his horses top the $1 million mark in earnings in 1986, a year in which he earned his first training titles at Golden Gate Fields and Bay Meadows.
Credits Novel Sprite, whom he claimed for $16,000, with putting him on the map. Novel Sprite went on to earn more than $400,000 and was named national Claimer of the Year for 1986. Novel Sprite was also his first stakes winner.
His wife, Janet, is also his chief assistant at the barn.