04/20/2008 11:00PM

Six gain entry to Hall of Fame

Bill Denver/Equiphotos
Carl Nafzger trained Street Sense, the only horse to win the Breeders' Cup Juvenile and Kentucky Derby.

Jockey Edgar Prado and trainer Carl Nafzger, who had career highlights in recent years by capturing the Kentucky Derby, parlayed that success along with a glorious body of work in previous years to be elected into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, the Hall of Fame announced on Monday.

Prado and Nafzger were among three people and three horses who will make up the induction class of 2008. They will be joined by jockey Milo Valenzuela, and the horses Ancient Title, Inside Information, and Manila,

All six will be inducted at Saratoga Springs, N.Y., on Aug. 4, at the Fasig-Tipton Sales Pavilion, only a few furlongs from Saratoga Race Course.

Nafzger, Prado, Inside Information, and Manila were elected in their respective contemporary categories by a majority of the Hall of Fame's 184 voters. Ancient Title and Valenzuela were selected by the Hall's 12-member historic review committee, which considers jockeys, trainers, and horses who have been inactive for at least 25 years.

Nafzger and Prado appeared on the ballot for the first time. Nafzger was in a two-person race for trainer against Bob Wheeler, a legend in California. Prado outpolled both Alex Solis and Randy Romero.

Manila, acknowledged as one of the great turf horses of the last half-century, finally got into the Hall in his 11th appearance on the final ballot. He beat out fellow male contemporary horses Best Pal and Tiznow.

Inside Information was on the ballot for the fourth time. She prevailed against an outstanding field of contemporary female horses, including Open Mind, Silverbulletday, and Sky Beauty.

Nafzger, 66, won his second Kentucky Derby last year with Street Sense, who is the lone horse to win the Derby and the Breeders' Cup Juvenile. Nafzger also won the Derby in 1990 with Unbridled, who won that year's BC Classic, too. Before turning to training, Nafzger was an accomplished rodeo rider, and did so well in that field that, last year, he was inducted into the Professional Bull Riders Hall of Fame.

Nafzger said he "can't even visualize" being in the Hall of Fame with his mentor, the great trainer John Nerud, who gave Nafzger's career a big push by sending him horses in 1978.

Prado, 40, won the Kentucky Derby in 2006 with Barbaro, and Prado acknowledged during a conference call on Monday that Barbaro "had a lot to do" with his getting into the Hall of Fame.

"He got me my first title as champion jockey," Prado said, referring to his 2006 Eclipse Award, "and a lot of people fell in love with the horse."

Prado is a native of Peru. After arriving in the United States in 1986, he first rode in Florida and New England, then led the nation in victories three straight years, 1997-99, while riding in Maryland. But his career reached another level when he subsequently relocated to New York. Prado has won the Belmont Stakes twice. He has won 6,040 races in North America, 15th all-time.

"I'm speechless," Prado said. "This is a dream come true."

Valenzuela, 73, retired in 1980 after a career in which he won the Kentucky Derby twice, on Tim Tam in 1958 and Forward Pass in 1968. But he is best known as the regular rider of the great Kelso, on whom Valenzuela won 22 stakes races in the early 1960s.

"I am the happiest man today knowing that I have been recognized and accepted to the Hall of Fame," Valenzuela said. "This was my last chapter in my racing career that I wanted to complete. My last ride across the finish line, at 73 being inducted into the Hall of Fame."

Ancient Title, who joined Valenzuela as an inductee from the historic review committee, won 24 of 57 starts while racing from ages 2 through 8, primarily in California, in a career that ended in 1978. Ancient Title, a gelding, won such major races as the Californian and Hollywood Gold Cup at Hollywood Park with a wicked combination of speed and staying power. On a foray to the East Coast in 1975, he won the Whitney Handicap at Saratoga.

Ancient Title was trained by Keith Stucki, 88, who is retired but lives not far from Santa Anita in Bradbury, Calif.

Inside Information became the third Hall of Fame horse trained by Shug McGaughey, who also trained Easy Goer and Personal Ensign. Inside Information won 14 of 17 starts, and completed her career with a runaway victory in the 1995 Breeders' Cup Distaff.

"I'm flattered that she was elected over fillies like Silverbulletday, Sky Beauty, and Open Mind," McGaughey said. "All three of them deserve to be in the Hall of Fame, too."

Inside Information is a broodmare at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Ky.

Manila won 12 of 18 starts, including nine straight from June 1986 to July 1987, most notably the Breeders' Cup Turf at Santa Anita's Oak Tree meeting, in which he prevailed after having to alter course in traffic a furlong from the wire. Manila also won the 1987 Arlington Million. Manila, who was trained by Leroy Jolley, is currently at stud in Turkey.