Nyquist Gets His Start With Ocala Based Trainer, Niall Brennan!

What do so many of the Kentucky Derby Grade 1 runners have in common?

It’s remarkable to note that 10 of the 20 starters in the 2016 Kentucky Derby began their racing careers by being trained here in Ocala!

2016 Kentucky Derby Winner Nyquist! Photo compliments of Niall Brennan Stables
2016 Kentucky Derby Winner Nyquist! Photo compliments of Niall Brennan Stables

Most notably, the current Triple Crown front runner, Nyquist, was purchased as a yearling by Niall Brennan and Mike Ryan, and trained as a 2 year old at Niall Brennan Stables. This formidable colt showed remarkable speed and stride length during his training with Niall, and buyers came flocking to the 2 year old sales, but trainer Dennis O’Neill prevailed in purchasing him (as an agent) for owner Paul Reddam for $400,000. Certainly an investment which has already paid major dividends.

Many Breeder’s Cup and Triple Crown Contenders start at Niall Brennan Stables

Niall runs a hugely successful training facility in Marion County, which has a large number of Breeder’s Cup and Triple Crown contenders. In addition to Nyquist’s big win at the Derby, Niall Brennan Stables also started Gun Runner, who placed 3rd this year in the Derby as well. Over the past decade he has started and trained over 75 Graded Stakes winners including notable horses such as Ironicus, Orb, Palace Malice, Dayatthespa, Point of Entry, Imagining, Competitve Edge and Kobe’s Back.

Niall Brennan Stables (NBS) is a beautiful facility that runs like clockwork. The stables are immaculate and they have a busy staff of trainers, barn managers and exercise riders. The farm features a 3/4 mile dirt track, a Six Furlong rolling turf course, a Wordley Martin jogging track, state of the art Aquaciser, 100 acres of turn out paddocks, 3 European walkers, 6 round pens, and 4 barns accommodating up to 130 horses.

The motto of NBS is “Success Is No Accident”, which is readily apparent when touring their impressive facility and watching the early morning training gallops.

The Final Furlong

Equally as impressive is the NBS team’s dedication to their thoroughbred aftercare program called The Final Furlong. For horses that have come through Niall’s training program, this is an opportunity to be let down after their racing careers to then be re-trained and re-homed as sport horses or companion horses. Stephanie Brennan, Niall’s wife, has made this program her special passion.

The FINAL FURLONG is a non-profit 501(c)3 charity (Incorporated 4/01/09), created to establish a safe and secure environment for racehorse graduates of Niall Brennan Stables and its clients upon completion of their racing careers. The goal of FINAL FURLONG is to find a caring home suitable to each horse’s ability: show, pleasure or simple retirement.

We salute the team at NBS and look forward to watching Nyquist run the remaining two legs of the Triple Crown series! To learn more about Niall Brennan Stables and the Final Furlong re-homing program, please click here.