J. Larry Jones
Trainer Bios

J. Larry Jones

Born: September 2, 1956 in Hopkinsville, Ky.

Record at Keeneland

Total Wins: 38

Stakes Wins: 3

Career Firsts

First Grade 1 Win: 2004 Acorn at Belmont Park with Island Sand

First Stakes Win: 1986 Honorable Order of Ky. Colonel Stakes at Ellis Park with Capt. Bold

First Graded Stakes Win: 2003 Fantasy (G2) at Oaklawn with Ruby's Reception

First Career Win: 1983 at Ellis Park

At Keeneland


Won the 2016 Juddmonte Spinster (G1) during the Fall Meet with I'm a Chatterbox.

Sent out Lovely Maria to win the 2015 Central Bank Ashland (G1) before capturing the $1 million Kentucky Oaks (G1) at Churchill Downs.

Prepped Havre de Grace at Keeneland in October 2011 before her fourth-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) en route to being named the season’s Horse of the Year.

Havre de Grace was paraded in the Keeneland Paddock during the 2012 Spring Meet.

First Keeneland stakes win was the 2004 Lexus Raven Run (G2) with Josh’s Madelyn.

First Keeneland win came during the 1986 Fall Meet.

Career


Three-time winner of the Kentucky Oaks (G1): Proud Spell (2008), Believe You Can (2012) and Lovely Maria (2015).

North American career earnings exceed $48 million with 1,097 wins through January 29, 2018.

2017 earnings were $1,908,885 with 51 wins.

2016 earnings were $2,958,919 with 58 wins, including the Juddmonte Spinster (G1) at Keeneland and Delaware Handicap (G1) with I'm a Chatterbox.

Recorded his 1,000th career victory when he sent out He'll Pay to win the Rushaway at Turfway on April 2, 2016. 

2015 earnings were $4,388,575 with 54 wins, including the Kentucky Oaks (G1) with Lovely Maria and Cotillion (G1) with I'm a Chatterbox.

2014 earnings were $2,518,877 with 53 wins, including the Amsterdam (G2) with Coup de Grace, Monmouth Oaks (G3) with Cassatt, Pegasus (G3) with Albano and Matchmaker (G3) with Starstruck (IRE).

Trained 2011 Horse of the Year Havre de Grace, who won nine races in 16 starts and earned $2,586,175.

Took a year off from training in 2010. During his leave, he reversed roles with his wife, Cindy, who has been his assistant. With her at the helm, the Jones barn won 35 races, including the Gazelle (G1) with No Such Word. Cindy also managed the operation in 2014 after Larry – who often gallops many of the stable’s horses – was severely injured in a training accident in April at Delaware Park.

Won the 2008 Big Sport of Turfdom Award from the Turf Publicists of America.

Most lucrative year was 2008 when his stable won 118 races and earned $6,819,633.

Background


Before he became a successful Thoroughbred trainer, Larry was a commercial farmer in Hopkinsville, Ky., growing corn, tobacco and soybeans and raising cattle and hogs.

“I was farming at the time and farming was not going well in the ‘70s, so I sold out and started doing this,” he said. “I grew up showing horses, so it was a natural move over.”

Larry first dabbled in the Thoroughbred industry in 1980 as the owner of a $2,500 claimer named Ala Turf, who was a winner. “I had a prefect record as an owner,” he said. He obtained his trainer’s license in 1982 and won his first race the following year. “I thought things weren’t getting trained right, so I might as well do it myself. I found out training horses was a whole lot more fun than farming.”

Jones always wears a cowboy hat, which he describes as “my signature.” He dons a helmet, however, when he exercises his horses in the mornings.