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Jack Holt legendary racehorse trainer

Jack Holt horse traineBorn to Mary and Michael Holt in Berwick on November 14, 1879 and named Michael, although he adopted the name Jack, he became one of Victoria's most successful horse trainers. When he was sixteen he left his employment delivering mail with the postal service to train racehorses and ponies. He won his first metropolitan race with Flying Fox but was content in the early days to place his horses at meetings in the Gippsland district.

Jack Holt first headed the Victorian trainers' list in the 1918-1919 season and was leading trainer twelve times. Because of this success he was dubbed "The Wizard of Mordialloc". Some of his successful horses were: Eurythmic, Heroic, Mistico, Sir Ibex, Lilypond, Second Wind and Easingwold. With these horses he won most of Australia's most important races including the Melbourne Cup, Caulfield Cup, St Leger Stakes, Victorian Derby, Sydney Cup, W. S. Cox Plate the Doncaster Handicap and Newmarket Handicap. The jockeys who rode for him included Frank Dempsey, Bill Duncan, Bill Foulsham, 'Darby' Munro, Theo Lewis, Bill Williamson and 'Scobie' Breasley.

Financially very successful as a trainer and investor, Jack Holt was very generous to many individuals and several institutions. The Holt family gave prizes for school achievement to the pupils of St Brigid's school Mordialloc and provided an annual picnic for all the students. On his death the Jack Holt Medical Research Endowment was established by his estate which was valued at £228,840, a considerable sum in 1951.












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