Thoroughbred Racing tends to hit a lull (at least for the casual fan) the last two months of the year. During this time the Daily Racing Blog (when not addressing certain races) likes to feature Hall Of Fame Horses, Jockeys, and Trainers. But in looking back, we’ve neglected to talk about the actual Hall of Fame itself. So in case you’re interested…
The National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame was founded in 1951 in Saratoga Springs, NY to honor the achievements of American Thoroughbred Racehorses, Jockeys, and Trainers.
The museum first opened its doors in 1951, at which time it occupied a single room in Saratoga’s Canfield Casino. The establishment was supported by the city of Saratoga Springs, which donated $2,500, as well as the Saratoga Racing Association, which donated $5,000. Many patrons of the sport, also donated various pieces of art and memorabilia. The first item in the museum’s collection was a horseshoe worn by the great thoroughbred LEXINGTON.
In 1955, the museum moved to its current location on Union Avenue near the Saratoga Race Course, at which time inductions into the hall of fame began. Since that time, the museum has expanded several times to allow for the display of its extensive art collection and more multimedia displays on the history of the sport. The museum also houses a large collection of artifacts, and memorabilia that document the history of horse racing from the eighteenth century to the present.
The Hall of Fame’s nominating committee selects eight to ten candidates from among the four contemporary categories (male horse, female horse, jockey and trainer) to be presented to the voters.
Each spring, following the tabulation of the final votes, the announcement of new inductees is made, usually during Kentucky Derby Week in early May. The actual inductions are held in mid-August during the Saratoga Race Meet.
If you’re a fan of Horse Racing, DRB highly recommends you visit this Hall Of Fame. It is open year round.