Warren A. Croll, Jr.
Holy Bull is an American Hall of Fame Champion Thoroughbred racehorse. He was sired by Great Above, whose dam was the U.S. Racing Hall of Fame filly Ta Wee.
Holy Bull was trained by Warren A. "Jimmy" Croll, Jr. and was ridden by future Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith in every start except his first, when he was ridden by Luis Rivera Jr. Croll inherited Holy Bull from Pelican Stable owner Rachel Carpenter, who had died shortly before Holy Bull won his first race at Monmouth Park in 1993.
Unbeaten in his four races as a two-year-old, at age three Holy Bull won eight out of ten starts, five of which were Grade I events. He scored wins in the Hutcheson Stakes, Florida Derby, and the Blue Grass Stakes. Much like Hansel, who went off as the betting favorite in the 1991 Kentucky Derby and finished 10th, Holy Bull was the favorite in the 1994 Derby but wound up 12th.
Following the Derby, his handlers chose to rest the colt and bypassed the remaining two legs of the U.S. Triple Crown series. Once back on the track, Holy Bull soon dominated American racing. He defeated older horses Cherokee Run, Devil His Due and Colonial Affair in the Metropolitan Handicap. His victory in the Metropolitan marked the beginning of a six-race winning streak that included the Dwyer Stakes, Haskell Invitational Handicap, Travers Stakes, and Woodward Stakes, which he won by five lengths over Devil His Due and Colonial Affair. Holy Bull ended the 1994 racing season as U.S. Champion 3-year-old male and Horse of the Year.
As a four-year-old, Holy Bull won the Olympic Handicap easily but was injured and pulled up during the Donn Handicap. Sold to Darley Stud, in retirement he stands stud at Darley's Jonabell Farm in Lexington, Kentucky. His offspring include 2000 Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner and U.S. Champion 2-year-old male Macho Uno, 2005 Kentucky Derby winner Giacomo , 2007 Stephen Foster Handicap winner Flashy Bull, and graded stakes race winners Bwana Bull, Confessional, Bishop Court Hill, Woke Up Dreamin, and Eishin Boone.
In the Blood-Horse magazine List of the Top 100 Racehorses of the 20th Century, Holy Bull was ranked #64. In 2001, he was inducted in the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame.