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CALUMET FARM: FIVE DECADES OF CHAMPIONS

Calumet Farm has stood at the apex of Thoroughbred racing and breeding in America since its conversion to a Thoroughbred operation in 1932. Warren Wright Sr.’s vision and business-like philosophy enabled Calumet to achieve a position of dominance in Thoroughbred breeding and racing unmatched in the history of the “Sport of Kings.” During these 50 years, Calumet was the Leading Money-Winning Owner 12 times, won a record 8 Kentucky Derbies, had 2 Triple Crown-winning colts and 3 Filly Triple Crown winners, and had 11 horses elected to the National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame.

The Calumet story begins not in the paddocks of Belmont Park or Churchill Downs, but in the world of harness racing. In 1924, William Monroe Wright, founder of the Calumet Baking Powder Company and avid Standardbred breeder, purchased land on Versailles Road near Lexington and moved his Calumet Farm from its previous location in Libertyville, Illinois. Having turned his duties with the company over to his son, Warren Wright, he devoted all of his efforts to establishing Calumet as a leader in the Standardbred industry. By the time of his death in 1931, he had more than achieved his goal by establishing Calumet as one of the premier harness racing farms in the country. Among the noted horses within his stable were: Belwin, Peter the Brewer, Truax, and Guy Abbey, sire of the great trotter Greyhound.

William Monroe Wright’s greatest dream was to breed and race a winner of the first leg of the Trotting Triple Crown, the Hambletonian. Ironically, this was achieved as Wright lay unconscious on his deathbed, when Calumet Butler trotted to victory in 1931. His victory makes Calumet the only farm in America to have won both the Hambletonian and the Kentucky Derby