Born: Oct. 10, 1961
Record at Oaklawn:
Total Wins: 293 | Stakes Wins: 24
- Von Hemel’s recent Oaklawn success includes Suddenbreakingnews’ victory in the Southwest Stakes (G3) and second in the Arkansas Derby (G1) in 2016.
- Suddenbreakingnews became Von Hemel’s second Kentucky Derby starter and he was a fast-closing fifth.
- Other recent stars are 2015 Oaklawn Azeri Stakes winner Gold Medal Dancer, Caleb’s Posse, winner of the 2011 King’s Bishop (G1) and Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) and millionaire Alternation, a multiple stakes winner at Oaklawn. Caleb’s Posse also won the Smarty Jones Stakes in 2011 at Oaklawn and was runner-up in voting for champion 3-year-old male that year. In 2013, She’s All In had several top stakes placings, including a second behind champion Royal Delta in the Gr. 1 Delaware Handicap.
- From one of racing’s most recognizable families, Donnie and his brother, Kelly, are the sons of longtime Midwestern trainer and Nebraska Hall of Famer, Don Von Hemel.
- He graduated from Fort Hayes State University with an accounting degree, but went into the family business in 1984. He won his first training title at Louisiana Downs in 1988 and began a run of dominance at Remington that includes his induction in its Hall of Fame in 1998.
- Other top horses he has trained over the years include Clever Trevor, Mariah’s Storm, Evansville Slew and Custer.