As with most decades, the 2000's had its share of amazing training accomplishments. The decade is interesting in that it was dominated primarily by 3 trainers: Bobby Frankel, Todd Pletcher and Steve Asmussen. Frankel dominated the early years of the decade while Pletcher dominated the middle part of the decade and Asmussen dominated the latter part. It's time to check out the 5 best horse racing trainers of the 2000's.
1. Robert J. Frankel, July 9, 1941 - Nov. 16, 2009
The late, great, Bobby Frankel dominated the early part of the 2000's by winning almost everything in which he had a horse entered. It was a somewhat amazing run for Frankel from 2000 to 2003 where he took home 4 straight Eclipse Awards for Outstanding Trainer. Among Frankel's charges were 2002 Belmont Stakes winning Empire Maker, the grand sire of 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, the exceptionally talented Medaglia D'Oro and, of course, 2004 Breeders' Cup Classic winner Ghostzapper (watch below)
. Ghostzapper's performance in the Classic is considered the best ever by many racing fans. He beat a terrific field that included Roses In May, who would go on and win the Dubai World Cup in 2005, and the 2003 Breeders' Cup Classic winner Pleasantly Perfect. Ghostzapper won the 2004 BC Classic in 1:59.02, a record. After his passing his name would be associated with racing greatness as the horse named after Bobby, Frankel
, went undefeated in a 14 race career in Europe and is now considered one of the greatest thoroughbreds of all time.
2. Todd Pletcher, June 26, 1967 -
Like Frankel, Todd Pletcher won 4 straight Eclipse Awards for Outstanding Trainer. Pletcher took home his awards from 2004 through 2007.
Pletcher also took home Eclipse Awards in 2013 and 2014, meaning that he's won 6 total. 6 and counting, more like it, since Pletcher continues to dominate. The thing about Todd is that he wins races at every level, from claiming all the way up to Grade 1 events, and he does it with 2-year-olds to geldings. There is no condition that Pletcher isn't a master of. He won a Belmont Stakes in the decade with Rags to Riches in 2007 (below)
. The filly beat Curlin in that race. Pletcher won the 2010 Kentucky Derby with Super Saver. Pletcher's most amazing accomplishment might be winning purses that totaled a record $27,670,243 in 2006. That's a lot of coin coming from one barn.