Young was a rodeo champion and successful trainer for 30 years.
Veteran Louisiana trainer Troy James Young, 58, died at his home in Opelousas Aug. 16, according to his family.
Born in Crowley, La., Young got introduced to horses through his father, Lee, who grew up on a livestock and crop farm in St. Landry Parish. Lee Young trained Quarter Horses and Thoroughbreds at Evangeline Downs and Delta Downs and built Louisiana Stud for C.T. Fuller of Pennsylvania. Louisiana Stud was sold in the 1980s and later reopened as Copper Crowne.
Troy Young inherited his father’s riding talent and won cutting horse titles at the National High School Rodeo Finals in 1976 and 1977, competing against riders from 31 states and two Canadian provinces. Young also won championship titles in calf roping, team roping, and earned several all-around cowboy titles. His rodeo career extended into college, where he attended McNeese State University on a rodeo scholarship.
Like his father, Young found his way to the racetrack. He won 22 races his first year as a licensed trainer in 1984 and finished in the money in 44% of his starts.
Hero’s Countess in 1988 would become the first of 56 stakes winners he would campaign during 30 years as a trainer. His other top performers included grade 3 winner Dickey Rickey, Rebel Stakes winner B.J.’s Delta Pro, seven-time stakes winner Doctor Mike, and Leslie’s Love, who won six stakes on dirt and turf. Young also trained One Brick Shy, who would win the inaugural Claiming Crown Jewel Stakes at Canterbury Park in 1999 and later win the Louisiana Champions Day Turf Stakes.
In all, Young won 865 (17%) races and placed in an additional 1,448. He would retire from racing in 2013 with $15,789,018 in purses. He left racing to manage the family’s Indian Hills Country Club, which was started by his father.
Young’s family said he enjoyed family cookouts and gatherings, hunting, fishing, dancing and watching football with family and friends. He is survived by his children, Tyler James Young of Lafayette, La., Meghan Leigh Young Duplantis and husband Chase Henry Duplantis of Arnaudville, La., Kaitlin Young LeBlanc and husband Oliver John LeBlanc, IV of Church Point, La.; mother, Shirley Leger Young of Grand Coteau; the mother of his children, Hester A. Young; his brother, Marty Young of Grand Coteau; sisters, Lea Ann Young Bullara and husband Dean of Opelousas, LA and his sister, Shirlene Young of Lafayette; and five grandchildren.
The family requests donations be made to St. Jude’s Children Research Hospital, which has been the beneficiary of a charity golf tournament held annually at Indian Hills.