Birthdate: December 11, 1947.
Birthplace: Haselmere, Surrey, England.
Residence: Playa del Rey, Calif.
Family: wife, Shawn; daughter, Lita.
Asked what he most learned during his four years as an assistant to legendary trainer Charlie Whittingham, Neil Drysdale has often responded with the same one-word answer: “patience.”
Drysdale proved that patience is a virtue, parlaying the lessons he learned from 1970 through 74 in the Whittingham barn into a Hall of Fame career of his own. In honor of his late boss, Drysdale has registered six victories in the Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap at Hollywood Park among a list of major stakes scores.
The ultra-cautious English expatriate, son of a British Royal Marine officer, compiled an eclectic equine resume before he joined Whittingham. Drysdale trained show horses, managed a breeding farm in Argentina and started in the Thoroughbred industry with Tartan Farms as an assistant to trainer Roger Laurin.
After his stint with Whittingham, Drysdale became private trainer for Saron Stable in 1974 and opened a public stable in 1983. He has won six Breeders’ Cup races in five divisions, including the 1992 Classic with Horse of the Year A.P. Indy. He won the 2000 Kentucky Derby with Fusaichi Pegasus.