B. Wayne Hughes died peacefully, Wednesday, August 18, 2021 in his home at his beloved Spendthrift Farm with loving family by his side.

The longtime horse racing visionary and leader – best known within the industry for returning Spendthrift to prominence – was 87.

Hughes had been one of the sport’s most influential figures of the 21st century, with wide-ranging contributions that will forever impact Thoroughbred breeding and racing. He purchased Spendthrift in 2004 and traded in his residence of California for a life on the farm in Lexington. Hughes quickly began restoring the historic brand and its land, renovating almost all the farm’s signature structures and returning Spendthrift as a viable commercial breeding operation.

In 2008, he stood his first four home-raced stallions led by emerging kingpin sire Malibu Moon, who passed away this May at the age of 24. Hughes would revolutionize the business relationship between stallion owner and mare owner through ground-breaking programs, most notably “Share The Upside” which he designed to bonus the breeder with a vested interest in a stallion. Under Hughes, Spendthrift’s slogan became “The Breeders’ Farm” and he operated under a motto heard often by those who worked with him: ‘Breeders are the backbone of our industry’.

“We have to take care of the breeder and level the playing field between stallion owner and breeder,” said Hughes, upon launching Share The Upside in 2010. “You have people here, they have a farm, they need to sell their foal, they need to have a chance of making money. I need to provide the best investment programs I can. Breeders participate in making these stallions, so they should be participating in the success, too.”

The inaugural stallion he offered through the Share The Upside program was his home-raced Grade One winner Into Mischief, who is now one of the most valuable horses in the world after a meteoric ascent to the top of the stallion ranks. Into Mischief is the reigning champion general sire in North America in 2019 & 2020 and is on a record-setting pace again in 2021.

Hughes also experienced his greatest successes as a racehorse owner with close relatives to Into Mischief. Beholder, a younger half-sister to the great sire, campaigned in Hughes’ famed quartered purple and orange colors to become one of only three female horses in history to be a four-time champion after taking Eclipse Award honors in 2012, 2013, 2015 & 2016. She was a three-time Breeders’ Cup champ and won 11 Grade Ones before retiring to Spendthrift where she currently resides as a broodmare.

After Beholder dominated males by 8 ¼ lengths in the 2015 Pacific Classic (G1) at Del Mar, Hughes said: “I’ve had a few good horses in the past, but she is the first horse that makes me feel lucky to be the owner. I’ve never had that feeling before. I think it’s called pride.”

Last year, Hughes, in his 50th year as a racehorse owner, achieved the single greatest feat in horse racing by winning the elusive Kentucky Derby (G1) with the three-year-old colt Authentic – a son of Into Mischief. Authentic had become the embodiment of the pioneer spirit of Hughes, whose innovative marketing 10 years prior had given Into Mischief the best opportunity to become a successful sire. Authentic also represented that spirit through MyRacehorse.com, an upstart online horse racing ownership company that Hughes boldly championed by offering anyone with $206 an equity-based microshare of his Kentucky Derby contender.

Nearly one year ago, Authentic won the Derby for Hughes, his partners and 5,314 every-day people who had bought in and came along for the journey. Authentic would go on to win the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) over older horses last November with Hughes in attendance at Keeneland to accept the trophy in the winner’s circle. It would be the colt’s final start before retiring to stud duty at Spendthrift and being named as North America’s ‘Horse of the Year’ for 2020.

Born Bradley Wayne in Gotebo, Oklahoma, Hughes was raised the son of a sharecropper. He moved to California as a child and was introduced to horse racing by his father who took him to Santa Anita Park for the first time as an 11-year-old. Hughes was renowned for having an unparalleled work ethic from a young age, starting a newspaper delivery route as a teenager to help pay for college. He served as an officer in the Navy and went on to graduate from the University of Southern California before achieving tremendous success in business, starting such companies as Public Storage and American Homes 4 Rent.

Shortly after retiring as CEO of Public Storage in 2002, he turned much of his focus to horse racing and campaigned his first champion racehorse in 2003 when 2-year-old colt Action This Day captured the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) at Hughes’ home track of Santa Anita. It would be his first of six Breeders’ Cup wins and six Eclipse Award wins.

Said Hughes after being honored as the 2020 Galbreath Award winner by the University of Louisville: “Thoroughbred horse racing has been a tremendous passion of mine ever since my father took me to the races as a young boy. It’s something he and I got to share together, and I’ve been fortunate to be able to make it a large part of my life and share it with so many that are dear to me. There are few thrills greater than what horse racing can provide, and it is our responsibility to do a better job of improving this great sport so that future generations can enjoy it as much as I have.”

To have known Wayne Hughes is to know he loved life, his country, USC and its football team, the horses, and his family. Following the death of his youngest son Parker in 1998, Hughes passionately committed himself to the curing of childhood Leukemia, ultimately accomplishing astonishing results in that area.

Hughes was preceded in death by his father William Lawrence, his mother Blanche, and his son Parker. He is survived by his wife Patricia, his son Wayne Jr. (Molly), his daughter Tamara Gustavson (Eric), his grandchildren Kylie Barraza (Pat), Skylar Hughes, Grant and Greer Gustavson, his sister Sue Caldwell and family, Frank, Bill, Allen, and a host of beloved cousins and friends.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the B. Wayne Hughes Fund at UK HealthCare, P.O. Box 34184, Lexington, KY, 40588.

Stud Farms Sue Over 140-Mare Cap, Allege ‘Blatant Abuse of Power’ by The Jockey Club

By T. D. Thornton

Spendthrift Farm, Ashford Stud and Three Chimneys Farm are suing The Jockey Club in federal court over the “stallion cap” rule that went into effect in 2020, alleging that the 140-mare breeding limit now being phased in amounts to a “blatant abuse of power” that acts as an “anti-competitive restraint” and threatens to disrupt the free-market nature of the bloodstock business.

The plaintiffs contend that the stallion cap “serves no legitimate purpose and has no scientific basis” while alleging that the nine stewards of The Jockey Club who voted to adopt the rule change purportedly did so based more on a desire to satisfy their own “conflicting economic interests” rather than their organization’s stated purpose of “facilitating the soundness of the Thoroughbred breed.”

Read TDN Article

Into Mischief and Mitole Available to Quarter Horses

Breeding will be via artificial insemination handled by Robicheaux Ranch.


Spendthrift Farm has partnered with Robicheaux Ranch and will offer the opportunity for Quarter Horse mares to breed with leading Thoroughbred stallion Into Mischief  and recent Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) winner Mitole  for the 2020 breeding season, it was announced Nov. 20. Quarter Horse mares will be bred via artificial insemination.

Between Spendthrift Farm owner B. Wayne Hughes looking for creative ideas and Ryan Robicheaux, manager of Robicheaux Ranch in Breaux Bridge, La., looking for an outcross, the venture interested both sides of the deal.


Read BloodHorse Article


September 15, 2019

Into Mischief | Paddock 2014 | Barbara Livingston Photo

Into Mischief, the current No. 1 General Sire in North America, will stand in 2020 for a fee of $175,000 S&N and has been booked full.

“The rise of Into Mischief has been special to witness, and there’s every indication that the best is yet to come. We genuinely believe he’s the best sire in the world, and is on the verge of becoming an important sire of sires when you look at what Goldencents is doing,” said Ned Toffey, general manager at Spendthrift.

“I don’t know if we’ve seen anything quite like Into Mischief, it’s truly remarkable the things he’s doing. Aside from amounting results on the track and in the sales ring, he’s the consummate professional and loves his job. This year, over 96% of his mares checked in foal. We think Into Mischief is making a positive impact on the breed that will be felt for years to come, particularly with the heart and durability that are signatures of his offspring,” he added.

Into Mischief ranks as the leading sire in the land in 2019, with $12,779,193 in progeny earnings – more than a million ahead of No. 2 Tapit – through Saturday according to BloodHorse. Into Mischief has sired industry highs in black type horses with 45 and Grade One horses with 8 to date in 2019, led by his newest Grade One winners Mia Mischief and Covfefe.

In the sales ring, Into Mischief had an industry-high four 2-year-olds sell for seven figures in 2019, led by a $1,800,000 filly at the Fasig-Tipton Timonium sale in May – breaking a record for the highest-priced horse ever sold publicly in Maryland. He also sired the $1,300,000 sale topper at OBS April and $900,000 sale topper at OBS June this year, giving him an industry-high four 2-year-old sale toppers in the last two years.

Into Mischief’s impact is also being felt as a sire of sires. Goldencents, Into Mischief’s first son to enter stud, is the No. 1 Second Crop Sire in North America in 2019. His newest son to stud, Maximus Mischief, was recently announced to be standing alongside Into Mischief and Goldencents at Spendthrift for an introductory fee of $7,500 S&N in 2020.

By Harlan’s Holiday, Into Mischief is out of 2016 Broodmare of the Year Leslie’s Lady. Spendthrift plans to announce fees for the rest of its 2020 stallion roster in the near future. The farm is currently offering early-bird pricing on the majority of its roster.


Spendthrift announces 2019 stud fees

Thursday, October 4, 2018

B. Wayne Hughes’ Spendthrift Farm announced 2019 fees for its 25-stallion roster set to stand at the Lexington-based farm this upcoming breeding season. Among the roster are three new stallions for 2019, and Spendthrift’s stallion ranks are again spearheaded at the top by leading sire Into Mischief, whose fee has moved to $150,000 S&N and is booked full.

All three new stallions are Grade 1 winners, including the recently-retired Mor Spirit, Free Drop Billy and Bolt d’Oro, who remains in training through the end of the season. Bolt d’Oro was the only two-year-old colt of 2017 to win multiple Grade 1 races, including dominant back-to-back wins in the Del Mar Futurity (G1) and FrontRunner S. (G1). In the latter, the son of Medaglia d’Oro earned a 103 Beyer – the fastest Beyer earned by a two-year-old colt since 2014. Bolt d’Oro’s initial fee has been set at $25,000 S&N, subject to change pending race results.

Goldencents, North America’s No. 1 First-Crop Sire, will see his fee move to $20,000 S&N. The popular son of Into Mischief currently has a crop-high 19 two-year-old winners – seven more than any other first-crop sire – including four black type horses and two black type winners to date. Jimmy Creed, currently North America’s No. 2 Second-Crop Sire, will also see his stud fee move to $20,000 S&N for 2019 after siring 11 black type horses and five black type winners, led by Grade 2-winning three-year-old colt Kanthaka.

Perennial leading sire Malibu Moon will remain at $75,000 S&N in 2019 after another banner year that has already included siring two Grade 1 winners – the most of any from the A.P. Indy sire line so far in 2018. Malibu Moon is led by Breeders’ Cup Sprint contender Ransom the Moon, repeat winner of the Bing Crosby S. (G1) this summer at Del Mar, and Arkansas Derby (G1) winner Magnum Moon.

Spendthrift is also bringing home promising young stallion Normandy Invasion, a record-holding son of Tapit who had been standing in New York as property of Spendthrift. Normandy Invasion, who’s first crop of yearlings have sold for up to $170,000 so far this year, remains Gulfstream’s track-record holder at a mile on dirt at 1:33.13.

Spendthrift is introducing a new breeding program for 2019 called the “Safe Bet Program”, which is designed to substantially minimize risk for breeders who support any of Spendthrift’s fourth-year stallions that have first-crop two-year-olds set to hit the track in 2019. The program was designed to assure breeders a significant level of success from a stallion’s first crop of two-year-old runners, or the breeder will pay a significantly discounted stud fee.

Spendthrift will host an open house before and during the Fasig-Tipton October Sale, from Oct. 20-25 at 1-3pm daily. For more information on Spendthrift’s new Safe Bet Program, the open house, or any of its stallions, please contact Des, Mark, or Brian at 859-294-0030, or visit SpendthriftFarm.com.

The below chart includes Spendthrift’s full stallion roster and 2019 stud fees:

Stallions Stands & Nurses Fee
Into Mischief $150,000 – BOOK FULL
Malibu Moon $75,000
Bolt d’Oro – NEW $25,000
Lord Nelson $25,000
Goldencents $20,000
Jimmy Creed $20,000
Cross Traffic $10,000
Gormley $10,000
Mor Spirit – NEW $10,000
Temple City $10,000
Brody’s Cause $7,500
Wicked Strong $7,500
Palace $6,000
Race Day $6,000
Cinco Charlie $5,000
Dominus $5,000
Flat Out $5,000
Hit It a Bomb $5,000
Shakin It Up $5,000
Can the Man $3,500
Danza $3,500
Itsmyluckyday $3,500
Medal Count $3,500
Normandy Invasion $3,500
Free Drop Billy – NEW TBA