Get to Know Phoenix Thoroughbreds' Tom Ludt

The Life
Tom Ludt at the 2018 Belmont Stakes, where Phoenix Thoroughbreds' Gronkowski finished second to Justify.
Tom Ludt at the 2018 Belmont Stakes, where Phoenix Thoroughbreds' Gronkowski finished second to Justify. (America's Best Racing photo)

What I do for a living: I manage an international Thoroughbred racing and breeding operation for Phoenix Thoroughbreds.

What I like about Thoroughbred racing: What I like is the beautiful, powerful horse.  I really enjoy going to the track in the morning and watching the training. The interaction with all the great people in the Thoroughbred business. Every day is a new day with challenging and unique changes to work on.

If I wasn’t in my current job, I would be: If I wasn’t doing this I’d probably be selling some type of product that involves a lot of interaction with people.  Can only imagine what some people would tell you I’d be selling. :)

Best advice to someone considering becoming a Thoroughbred owner: Be patient and carefully analyze what you want and expect out of your ownership and pick a great team to advise you.

Should the Breeders’ Cup rotate from coast to coast or have a permanent home: I think it is a good idea to rotate BC but I do think we should always be analyzing the opportunity to pick a home if it was “right.”  One thought would be to lower costs to owners and help brand our business through long-term sponsorship.

My top three favorite racetracks in order: Santa Anita, Keeneland, Del Mar

Most influential person in my career: Mr. John Bell and his family

My out-of-the-box idea for Thoroughbred racing: Set start times organized and followed or fined by a “racing czar”

Ludt (left) with Amer Abdulaziz and Bob Baffert at the Keeneland September sale.
Ludt (left) with Amer Abdulaziz and Bob Baffert at the Keeneland September sale. (Keeneland/Coady Photography)

My favorite athletes of all time: Michael Jordan, Jack Nicklaus, Roger Federer

Other sports/teams I follow: University of Kentucky, college basketball in general, golf: Phil Mickelson and Jason Day

What book(s) I am reading or have recently read: Getting ready to reread “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People”

Favorite magazines: Thoroughbred Daily News

Hobbies away from Thoroughbred racing: Golf, betting horses

Favorite movies: “Fletch,” “Forrest Gump”

Favorite TV shows I watch: Don’t watch much TV except sports and ESPN

Favorite foods: Love almost all food but if had to pick: seafood 

Favorite vacation spot: Love beach resorts around the world.  Love to explore new ones but recently really enjoyed the Resort of Pedregal, Mexico.

Favorite musician/band: I’m a big Eagles fan.

Favorite actor: Tom Hanks, Denzel Washington, and Will Smith

Five websites I visit daily: Thoroughbred Daily News, RTN, Newser, ESPN, Racing Post

I’d like to have dinner with the following three people inside racing: Jim Gagliano, Frank Stronach, and Bill Carstanjan- Give them my tips. :)

I’d like to have dinner with the following three people outside of racing: Michael Jordan, Warren Buffett, and Tiger Woods

Best racetrack food can be found at: Undecided

Accomplishment I am most proud of: My reputation from the clients I have worked for would most likely be a solid, honest, hard worker.

My philosophy on life: Work hard, try your best, admit mistakes, apologize when wrong, and serve others.

Things I collect: Golf shirts and hats

Favorite charities: All of them that serve their mission with low overhead

Favorite authors: Stephen Covey

Favorite animal other than a horse: Labrador retriever

Favorite non-Thoroughbred racing sports event I have attended: The Masters, The Ryder Cup, Super Bowl

Three words that define what Thoroughbred racing means to me: Thrill of victory

Top three fashion brands you prefer to wear: Not my strength and take advice from others

Favorite month of the year: June

What apps are on your phone: Way too many

Favorite summer cocktail: Coors Light

Favorite winter cocktail: Coors Light

Favorite all-time racehorse: Secretariat

Favorite race horse currently competing: Gronkowski

Favorite international racing event: Breeders’ Cup

Three ways to attract more fans to the sport:  Advertise, free entry, and lower takeout  

What do you drive for a car?  Lexus

What’s your favorite gym exercise? Walking

Who will win the Super Bowl this year?  Patriots

Esports: Yay or nay? Yay

Favorite restaurant: Celestinos

Last TV series you binge-watched was: None

College or pro football: College

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