Starlight Racing announced on its website this week that its founder, and Louisville native, Jack Wolf, has been named the 2013 Warner L. Jones Horseman of the Year by Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners (“KTO”). Since 1989, KTO has presented the award to a member of the horse industry who displays the spirit and passion of the Thoroughbred industry as did the late Warner L. Jones.
Warner L. Jones served as the chairman of Churchill Downs for eight years during the late 1980s to early 1990s and was the master of Hermitage Farm in Oldham County. He was a notable Thoroughbred breeder and horseman, having bred and raced the 1953 Kentucky Derby winner Dark Star. Although Jones died in 1994 from complications of cancer, his spirit lives on in the KTO award.
Recipient, Jack Wolf, grew up in Louisville and graduated from St. Xavier High School before attending Murray State University on a football scholarship. After obtaining a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from the university, he went on to build a successful career in the investment world which later allowed him to break into the Thoroughbred industry.
In 2000, Wolf and wife, Laurie, launched Starlight Stables when they bought six yearlings at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July sale. One of those yearlings was Harlan’s Holiday, who became a multiple-grade-one winner and prominent sire. Starlight has gone on to great success in the 13 years of its existence, having raced Eclipse champions Ashado and Shanghai Bobby, as well as graded stakes winners Monba, Hilda’s Passion, and Algorithms, among others.
In addition to his success and commitment to Starlight, Wolf founded the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (“TAA”), where he serves as board president. TAA serves as an accrediting body for facilities that care for racing’s retired Thoroughbreds and offers financial support to accredited aftercare programs.
KTO will present Wolf with the Warner L. Jones Horseman of the Year award at its annual awards dinner this Saturday, Nov. 23. Tickets for the dinner at the Kentucky Derby Museum are $125 per person or $1,000 for a table of eight. To purchase tickets, contact Marlene Meyer of KTO at (502) 458-5820.
Photo: Courtesy Starlight Racing