The Early Years of Keeneland History Kentucky’s open grasslands had attracted the type of settler who loved horses because of its great beauty. Also, Kentucky imposed richness of soil minerals, abundance of water, and suitable climate, terrain, and vegetation that attracted these people. People that lived in Kentucky possessed a great love and pride for sporting horses. Their love and passion of horses would shape the Thoroughbred world of today. The horse industry in Kentucky expanded rapidly with the great passion of breeding and sporting horses. Horse breeding became well established in the Bluegrass before the end of the eighteenth century.
One of the reason why the great industry of the Thoroughbred business flourished is that a law was passed concerning the preservation and improvement of breeds of horses. Another dominant reason that all the inhabitants of Kentucky took great care in breeding and improving the breeds of horses. Lexington had been without a racetrack since the deteriorating Kentucky Association plant operated its last meeting in the spring of 1933. Racing was needed in central Kentucky, and something had to be done.
... events that have happened to people. Love is unpredictable, exciting, and probably one of the greatest feelings people can experience during a ... lifetime. Love is just one of those things that ... In the story The Horse Dealers Daughter, author D.H. Lawrence represents a type of love metaphor that is truly an example of ...
Horsemen and Owners knew that something desperately needed to be done to keep the tradition of Kentucky racing alive. If something was not done then the great industry of Thoroughbred racing would definitely decline. On a Wednesday afternoon March 20, 1935, Major Louie A. Beard addressed a mass meeting of breeders and others interested in the future of racing in Lexington. Beard outlined the plans for the purchase and development of Keeneland at the Lafayette Hotel. “This may seem like a dream, but I believe it is a dream that can be realized.” , Beard concluded.
This statement was a truer prophet than most of those present realized. These men seemed to know something that nobody else knew when it came to forming a racing and sales complex. They established policies that have existed for the past 50 years, they made predictions that have come true, and they built a horse facility that has lived up to every expectation. But, of course Keeneland was never intended to be just another racetrack. Twenty different sites were looked upon, but Hal Price Headley and company kept coming back to prominent Fayette County sportsman J. O.
Keene’s property on the Versailles Pike, six miles west from Lexington. When it came to horses and how their racetracks should look “Jack” Keene knew what it was all supposed to be about. Keene spent more than 20 years of his life, and some $400, 000 of his money, in trying to build a track and combination clubhouse and stable. He never intended for his fine establishment to be used for racing but rather to be a training center for his friends and their horses.
Keene and his friends conducted private races of their own and merely just enjoyed the pure sport of racing. Little did he know, this great place would soon become one of world’s greatest racetracks. With this outlook, The Keeneland Association saw Keene’s property as a start to their dream. After all of these years, and with The Keeneland Association wanting to buy the portion of Keene’s property with the track and clubhouse, he was finally willing to sell. With this notion, the project was set in a brilliant direction. Articles of Incorporation were filed on April 17, 1935 for Keeneland Association.
As a result of this, Hal Price Headley was elected Keeneland president, Jack Young first vice-president, A. B. Gay second vice-president, Brownell Combs secretary, and W. H. Courtney treasurer. The Keeneland Association on August 29, 1935 purchased 147 1/2 acres of Keene’s property for $130, 000 in cash and 10, 000 in preferred stock at par value.
... a property that was in the lower inter ... for Gulf Real Estate Properties Inc is that this gives them opportunities of investment on properties. If the company was asked to sell ... is higher with Gulf View Condominiums. Despite Gulf Real Estate Properties Inc providing more data for the Gulf View Condominiums, ...
This beautiful property included a one and one-sixteenth mile track; a stone building which was nearly completed. The stone building was 258 feet long, 58 feet wide, and two and three stories in height. J. O. “Jack” Keene had an ongoing obsession with stone architecture and was the first to construct a building with this style adapted from the Europeans. Keene’s property was adaptable for a clubhouse, office, residence, and other purposes.
The water system, including 100, 000 gallon tank; and an incomplete quarter-mile indoor training track, with 48 fireproof stalls adjoining that made this property more than outstanding. But, Keeneland Association had a bigger dream than what was already presently there. On October 1, 1935, architects planned for construction of the grandstand which included a 2, 500 seating capacity; construction of paddock; and remodeling the clubhouse. This project was submitted by Robert McMeekin, and were accepted by the Association board of directors.
The Keeneland Association also hired George Hoskins Lumber Company and Frazer and Yell man, electricians, for construction and wiring of seven winter barns. While this was happening, contracts were also awarded to W. T. Congleton Lumber Company for foundation work of six summer barns; Smith-Haggard Lumber Company for construction of kitchen and blacksmith shop; and Lexington Quarry Company for grandstand foundation and roads.
Also in addition to the others, a contract with George Hoskins Lumber Company was given the right to construct the phenomenal grandstand. The grandstand is one of the most attractive places on the property. It is selectively constructed of stone. The ends and front piers of the grandstand are of stone and the lawn extending in front of the stands is so graded that everyone on it will be provided a limitless view of the entire track. The grandstand is facing the blazing sun, but white parasols would later be provided to obstruct the sun.
Eventhough the grandstand is facing the sun, the legendary grandstand shines like the Mint Julep Cup given to the Bluegrass Stakes winners. Clubhouse guests would enter the building through the main clubroom on the first floor. The stairs to the mezzanine, go to the second floor where a stag bar and ladies’ bar were located in the wing next to the track. The main restaurant was located on the third floor of the left wing. Facilities for par-mutual betting also were established in the clubhouse. Clubhouse porches extended from the clubhouse toward the track one from each level.
... multiracial decade, we might be on track to finally understand that race is really a social creation. The ... Most importantly, the quiz shows that if we track down our DNA to one source it can be ... Latin American and a Caucasian American. The documentary Race: The Power of Illusion also shows this when ... cannot be categorized into the three or four races that people today recognize. Rather, study of ...
A spacious lawn also was available to clubhouse guests and members. Betting machines were located on the first floor beneath the grandstand. The first floor also included a restaurant and kitchen, men’s rooms and other facilities. The second level beneath the grandstand was devoted to the control rooms of the totalizator, which is the form of wagering used at Keeneland. A totalizator odds board was constructed in the center field. The smart invention of the totalizator calculates the odds of each horse on its chance to win, the bets of each horse, how much time is left till post, and many other important facts of each race.
Booths for betting were placed at the top of the grandstand for the convenience of those who did not want to leave the structure to bet. The grandstand had a seating capacity of 2, 500 which included two rows of boxes with a seating capacity of 500 people extending along the front of the structure. One track was located directly behind the three story building. Mr. Keene intended it to be an enclosed exercising track.
However, later it was converted into an outdoor saddling paddock. Enclosed stalls along the side of this enclosure served as saddling space during harsh weather. Barns were arranged that all motor traffic would pass by one end, leaving the other end a roadway solely for horses going and coming from the track. Side roads that lead to the main roadway were situated at intervals of every two barns. Through this arrangement the odd space between the barns was used for walking rings and other purposes without interference from traffic. Each stable and stall was set on a concrete foundation which would minimize destruction of rodents.
Spring meetings at Keeneland presently last 15 days. From April 4 th through the… check on this).
Fall meetings occur for 16 days and last much of the month of October.
These important meetings are the start of horse racing for each season. But the most significant meeting was when Keeneland had its first race. On October 15 th through the 24 th in 1936, Keeneland conducted its first inaugural meeting of nine days. Later on in Keeneland’s history on April 14 th through the 28 th a spring meeting was conducted that lasted for a total 14 days. When construction at Keeneland was started, officials hoped a spring meeting would be held that year, but the worst winter weather in many years threw construction so far behind.
... than loving her son. Paul accumulates money from horse races. Basset the gardener, Oscar the uncle and Paul ... had the ability of picking the winning horse at a race if he felt absolutely sure.He would ... as if he actually was in the race riding the horse at the racetrack and returns from his ... trance-like state after completing the race with the name of the winning horse. Nearing to the final derby ...
The meeting was delayed until later that year. Besides the fact of the horrible winter of 1935, beautiful Keeneland was finally a reality. Keeneland opened its gate to the public for the first time on October 15, 1936. A crowd estimated from 6, 000 to 8, 000 turned out for the program that carried purses totaling $7, 380 for the seven races.
Eight juvenile fillies started in the first race, including Wise Dart, who had “W. Stephens” listed in the program as her trainer. But Royal Raiment won the first race and paid $12. Keeneland was fortunate to have Myrtlewood appearing on its first card. Destined to win honors as the champion handicap female and best sprinter of 1936, she captured the featured Keen Handicap by three-quarters of a length. The four-year-old daughter of Blue Larkspur carried 128 pounds, spotting her one female and three male opponents 15 to 27 pounds.
Myrtlewood, who has owned and bred by Brownell Combs, came out for her third start of the meeting on closing day. Myrtlewood triumphed by three lengths as the 3-10 favorite. People didn’t have money to throw away in 1936. Betting however, for the nine-day meeting totaled $534, 498.
In time, Keeneland single race’s mutual would exceed the amount of money wagered for all nine days of the 1936 fall meeting. This was definitely one the greatest highlights of 1936 at Keeneland. In the spring of 1937, Keeneland presented a show of seven famous geldings retired from racing: Saracen, Mike Hall, Osm and, Jolly Roger, Clyde Van Duse n, Cherry Pie, and Merrick. A gelding is a castrated horse. The geldings were displayed in the paddock, and afterward all but the 34-year-old Merrick paraded under silks on the track. Those geldings were said to have made up probably the greatest “field’ ever seen together at the same time.
... He had arguably the best first 26 races of his career last year, hovering around first place in the ... for the power of team building and hold regular meeting. Second, the team should keep the cohesiveness high. ... the end of this season to join Stewart Haas Racing in 2014, Martin could become one of the ... Bowyer when he was still part of Richard Childress Racing. All told, Martin has 12 Cup wins as ...
Calumet Farm’s Bull Lea earned banner headlines at Keeneland’s 1938 spring meeting. Menow, champion two-year-old colt of 1937, also competed at this meeting. Menow, who was owned by Headly, won the Trial Handicap at 1-10. Then, in the Mere worth Purse, Menow was the 3-10 favorite, but got off to a poor start and finished third.
Bull Lea won that race, setting a track record of 1: 44 for the mile and one-sixteenth. Bull Lea set another track record in winning the Blue Grass Stakes, but this time Menow lost by just a neck in a closely contested race. Bull Lea covered the mile and one-eighth in 1: 49 3/5, a full 2 3/5 seconds faster than the former record. The Calumet colt carried 121 pounds, two fewer than Menow’s impost. Those fans in attendance would definitely long remember the Blue Grass battle between Bull Lea and Menow. The breeding industry would long remember the blood of these two colts.
Bull Lea proved to be a great sire, and Menow himself was quite influential in the breeding industry. In 1940 Keeneland Association underwent a reorganization and converted its preferred stock into bonds. In that year, Keeneland became a tax-exempt corporation under Internal Revenue Code Section 51-C. The bonds were paid off early in the decade of the Fifties. It left the owner side in the Keeneland Association consisting of 3, 500 shares of voting stock, on which there were no possible dividends to be declared at any time. Keeneland Race Course as a corporation was established in 1940 as an operating corporation of the Keeneland property.
Also in 1940 on March 12, at the first meeting of the Keeneland Race Course stockholders, five directors were named: J. Edward Basset, Jr. : J. A. Estes; Harold Fallon; Louis Lee Haggin II; and William C. “Buddy” Smith.
Haggin, a son-in-law of Headly was elected president of Keeneland Race Course. Other officers elected were: Basset, first vice-president; Smith, second vice-president; Fallon, treasurer; and Estes, secretary. These great leading men would lead Keeneland into a great legacy of horse racing. Keeneland was not just another racetrack as it has been revealed. This simple track located in the heart of the Bluegrass was designed to be something special.
... is looked upon as the pinnacle of motors port racing, therefore the drivers involved are considered the best ... available to win far outweighs the cost of racing. The talent of the drivers is the most ... known to be the most prestigious type of auto racing in the world. Unfortunately, in the United States ... of racing in the world. The action that takes place during an average 190- mile Formula One race is ...
It would cultivate an loved appreciation and respect for the noble sport of horse racing. The idea of Keeneland was to have an impression that would cater to established horse lovers and to develop new fans for the sport. Keeneland as a dream that could be realized became a dream that is now a great reality. Bibliography Falconer, J. B. The Keeneland Story: a quarter century of racing in the finest tradition.
Lexington, Kentucky: Thoroughbred Press, 1960. Keeneland: opening 1936. Lexington, Kentucky: C. T. Dearing Print. Co.
1936. Wharton, Mary E. , and Edward L. Bowen.
The Horse World of the Bluegrass. New York: The John Bradford Press, 1980.” Keeneland: the golden years, 1936-1986.” Keeneland Association, Inc. , c 1986. Strode, William. Keeneland: a half century of racing. New York: Harmony House, 1986.
Nicholson, Nick, “Keeneland Thoroughbred Racing and Sales.” Designed by Digi Know: Available from web.