Spendthrift Farm Owner B. Wayne Hughes Passes

Horse Racing Radar
Valerie Mellema
Valerie Mellema is a Staff writer for Horse Racing Radar
Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Spendthrift Farm has announced the passing of B. Wayne Hughes. He died peacefully in his home at Spendthrift with his family by his side at the age of 87. 

He was born in Gotebo, Oklahoma in 1933, the son of a sharecropper. After his family moved to California, his father took him to Santa Anita for the first time at the age of 11. 

Hughes was well-known for his work ethic with his first job as a newspaper delivery boy. He served as an officer in the Navy and graduated from the University of Southern California. He started multiple companies including Public Storage and American Homes 4 Rent. 

In 2002, he retired from CEO of Public Storage, and turned to his passion of horse racing. ACTION THIS DAY was his first champion racehorse in 2003, capturing the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1). He would go on to win six Breeders' Cups and six Eclipse Awards. Bradley Wayne Hughes changed the way that breeding farms in Kentucky did business, developing unique programs such as Share the Upside with the breeder in mind to help level the playing field.

Hughes purchased Spendthrift in 2004, moving from California to Lexington, Kentucky. He began to restore the historic brand of the farm and renovated the farm's structures. In 2008, he stood four home-raced stallions, one of which was MALIBU MOON. INTO MISCHIEF was the first stallion he offered through the Share the Upside program.

In 2015, BEHOLDER, a half-sister to INTO MISCHIEF, was a three-time Breeders' Cup champ and won 11 grade ones before retiring as a broodmare. 

Last year, all of his work and innovative marketing came to a head when AUTHENTIC, a son of INTO MISCHIEF, won the Kentucky Derby as well as the Breeders' Cup Classic. AUTHENTIC was offered through, which allowed thousands to experience the thrill of racehorse ownership at the highest level. Hughes was a great supporter of MyRacehorse.

Following the 2020 Breeders Cup, Hughes purchased several more quality horses such as MONOMOY GIRL and GOT STORMY to add to the incredible stable that Spendthrift Farm owns and races. 

He will be forever missed by his family, friends and Spendthrift Farm team. Horse Racing Radar offers our sincere condolences.


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