Resident trainer Joan Murphy has worked with and helped develop some of racing’s top stars since joining the team at Bridlewood Farm in 2013, including the likes of multiple Grade 1 winner and 2017 Horse of the Year Gun Runner, Belmont S. (G1) winner Tapwrit, multiple Grade 1 winner Newspaperofrecord, Grade 1 winner Maxfield, multiple Graded stakes winner Destin, and Graded stakes winner Rushie just to name a few.
“Bridlewood Farm’s training graduates have long distinguished themselves on the racetrack. Our hands-on philosophy and top-class facilities provide the necessary tools to establish a strong foundation for young horses and rehabilitating horses back into form,” said Murphy. “The synthetic gallop-up, the turf course, and dirt track provide us options in preparing programs that allow individual horses to reach their full potential.
“Developing young horses and helping build the foundations for their future as racehorses are the most rewarding aspects of my position and I look forward to carrying on Bridlewood Farm’s rich tradition of producing superior quality athletes that win at the highest levels of the industry.”
Originally from Warrensburg, NY, just 30 minutes north of Saratoga, Murphy brings a wealth of industry experience to her position at Bridlewood. She was an exercise rider for accomplished trainer Linda Rice from 2008 through 2012 and she has worked with Thoroughbreds for more than 15 years after beginning her professional career at Stone Bridge Farm in New York in 2004.
“Meda’s horsemanship, passion, attention to detail, and hard-work ethic, has elevated her to the position of Resident Trainer,” said George Isaacs. “She is a credit to each horse in her care and the people she works with.”
The cornerstone of Bridlewood’s training facility is our seven-eighths of a mile dirt racetrack, one of the largest of its kind in Central Florida. It is renowned for its safety, and offers an optimal environment, particularly for young horses and rehabilitating horses. It is the perfect balance of sand and organic material to offer maximum cushion and moisture retention. The track has an extensive drainage system engineered by our track builder and supervisor Matt Rudnianyn and is meticulously maintained three times a day.
With turf racing becoming more prevalent in North America, our new five-eighths of a mile turf course gives us the ability to identify a horse’s preferred surface before they reach the racetrack. The turf course is already paying dividends, with horses like Catholic Boy winning Grade 1 events on both dirt and turf.
Our uphill gallop features a complete Tapeta Track Course engineered and installed by Michael Dickinson and his wife, Joan Wakefield. The gallop’s uphill grade allows us to train in all conditions and is a game-changer for physical and mental development.
Recent Bridlewood training graduates include Pretty Mischievous with an impressive win in the Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) at Churchill Downs on the Kentucky Derby card. Winning again in the 2023 in the Acorn S (G1) on the Belmont card. Cody’s Wish with a massive win in the Churchill Down S (G1) along with the Metropolitan Handicap (G1). Along with Matareya’s impressive winner of the Derby City Distaff S (Gr. 1) at Churchill Downs. Proxy wins the Clark S (G1) as well as the Oaklawn Handicap (G2). Additional graduates include Fair Maiden, winner of the La Brea S. (G1); Dupoly, victorious in the American Oaks (G1); Gun Runner, winner of the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) and 2018 Pegasus World Cup (G1); Belmont Stakes (G1) winner Tapwrit; Patternrecognition, winner of the 2018 Cigar Mile (G1); Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) winner Newspaperofrecord; and Catholic Boy, a Grade 1 winner on dirt and turf, as well as Grade 1 winners Carina Mia and Moonshine Memories, etc.