Tim Thornton accepted the Hardboot Breeders Award on behalf of his father, who was unable to attend the annual Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders/Kentucky Thoroughbred Association luncheon at Keeneland because of health reasons.
There were dual winners of the award this year, with veterinarian Dave Fishback accepting for his father, Bill, who also was not able to attend the ceremony at Keeneland.
"These two men, they spent their whole lives raising cattle, horses, tobacco, and kids," Thornton said.
Thornton, owner of Threave Main Stud, became Kentucky's youngest farm manager at age 20. He is connected to three Kentucky Derby winners, selling Gallahadian and Cannonero II and raising Hoop Jr. He also stood stallions, for several years had his training license, and is a former president of the Kentucky Farm Managers Club, Thoroughbred Club of America, and HBPA.
Fishback entered the business more than 50 years ago by paying $1,500 for a half-interest in three mares. He upgraded his stock over the years, became a regular sale consignor, and raised numerous stakes winners at his family's Glenairy Farm.
In other awards presented, Darley received the P.A.B. Widener Trophy to honor the breeder of the year and Ed Bowen, former editor of The Blood-Horse and author of 18 books on Thoroughbreds, was honored with the Charles W. Engelhard Award presented to a member of the media. Bowen is currently the executive director of the Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation.