#EqHist2018: Chris Goodlet on the D. Wayne Lukas Collection at the Kentucky Derby Museum

All month long we will be featuring speaker’s abstracts for the upcoming Equine History Conference: Why Equine History Matters.

“Take the Limits Off”: The D. Wayne Lukas Collection at the Kentucky Derby Museum
Chris Goodlett, Kentucky Derby Museum

     In the spring of 2017, Thoroughbred racing Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas announced that the Kentucky Derby Museum would be the permanent home of his racing collection. At approximately 1,300 items, the collection documents the career of an innovator among Thoroughbred trainers. Lukas was the first trainer to have a true coast-to-coast racing stable with large numbers of horses and staff persons, a move that received both praise and criticism from the industry. His methods have, so far, produced 14 Triple Crown victories, 20 Breeders’ Cup wins and 26 world champion Thoroughbreds. He has mentored some of the country’s top trainers, including Todd Pletcher, Dallas Stewart and Kiaran McLaughlin.

     A study of the D. Wayne Lukas Collection provides material evidence of the changes in Thoroughbred training that transpired in the latter part of the 20th century. Among the questions to be considered are as follows: what were the characteristics of Thoroughbred training prior to Lukas, how did Lukas innovate and change modern Thoroughbred training and what have these changes meant for the current state of the sport and industry? Additionally, from the public history perspective, how does the Kentucky Derby Museum interpret and communicate these stories to its audience.                               

     In this presentation, Chris Goodlett of the Kentucky Derby Museum, will share images from the Lukas Collection and discuss the new 2,200 square foot exhibit that will open in the fall of 2018.

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