Graham Motion

Graham was born in Cambridge, England in May 1964 and was raised at Newmarket’s Herringswell Manor Stud operated by his parents Michael and Jo.

Michael was an international bloodstock agent and North American representative for Tattersalls, the British bloodstock sales company. Jo rode as an amateur in England and took care of the 1951 (Aintree) Grand National winner Nickel Coin before becoming an assistant trainer in the U.S. Jo now owns a successful tack shop in Middleburg, VA.

The family moved to the U.S. in 1980 where Graham attended and graduated from Kent in Connecticut.

Graham has two sisters: Claire, a third-grade teacher in Middleburg, Virginia and Pippa, a wholesale gourmet food distributor in the Baltimore/Washington region. Andrew, Graham’s younger brother, was the Thoroughbred manager at Lazy Lane Farm in Virginia for 10 years before turning to consultancy work and also obtaining his real estate license. He now owns his own sales consignment company.

Graham’s career began with six years working with Hall of Fame trainer Jonathan Sheppard, during which he traveled extensively with four-time Eclipse award winning steeplechaser Flatterer. This was followed by time with trainer Jonathan Pease in Chantilly, France.

While in Chantilly, Graham met his future wife, Anita, who was working at the time for Alain de Royer-Dupre.

Returning to the U.S. in 1990, Graham went to work as assistant to Bernard (Bernie) P. Bond. On Bernie’s death in 1993, two owners left their horses with Graham, who took out his trainer’s license at that time. The stable won 21 races that first year, three of them stakes with Gala Spinaway who now is retired at Herringswell.

Graham won the 1,000th race of his career in 2006 and entered 2015 with more than 1,900 wins and more than $97 million in purse earnings.

  • Better Talk Now was his breakout horse in 2004 when he won the John Deere Breeders’ Cup Turf.
  • In 2010, Shared Account won the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf.
  • In 2011, Animal Kingdom won the Kentucky Derby and the Eclipse Award for champion 3-year-old male in North America.
  • In 2013, Animal Kingdom won the $10 million Dubai World Cup.
  • In 2014, Main Sequence won the Breeders’ Cup Turf and three other Grade 1 stakes en route to Eclipse Awards as Champion Male Turf Horse and Champion Older Male.

Graham and Anita live in Fair Hill, MD with their two children, Jane and Marcus.