Nelson Bunker Hunt - Thoroughbred Horse Racing

Thoroughbred Horse Racing

The United States National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) has awarded Hunt the title of "legendary owner-breeder". Overall, Hunt bred 158 stakes winners and either bred or owned 25 champions.

In 1955, Hunt bought his first thoroughbreds and by the 1970s his breeding program had become one of the world's largest and most productive. Winner of the U.S. Eclipse Award for Outstanding Breeder in 1976, 1985, and 1987, he owned the 8,000-acre (32 km2) Bluegrass Farm in Lexington, Kentucky, and raced thoroughbreds in Europe and North America. Among his horses, Hunt bred or raced Vaguely Noble, Dahlia, Empery, Youth, Exceller, Trillion, Glorious Song, Dahar and Estrapade.

In 1973 and 1974, Hunt was the British flat racing Champion Owner and in 1976 won the Epsom Derby.

Hunt's bankruptcy forced him to liquidate his thoroughbred operations. A 1988 dispersal sale of 580 horses at Keeneland Sales brought in $46,911,800, at that time the highest amount in the history of thoroughbred auctions. In 1999, he returned to thoroughbred ownership, spending a total of $2,075,000 on 51 juveniles and yearlings. At the time Hunt said, "At my age, I don't plan to do any breeding or buy a farm, I just want to have some fun and try to get lucky racing".

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