Visit Horse Country: Lane’s End Is a Must-Visit Destination

Events / Travel
Renowned stud farm Lane’s End sits on some of the most beautiful land in central Kentucky’s epicenter of Thoroughbred breeding. (Courtesy of Lane’s End/Facebook)

Lane’s End has been one of the most successful Thoroughbred operations for over 40 years. The farm in Woodford County, Ky. close to Versailles is without question one of the pillars of the Bluegrass region’s rich horse breeding heritage, fulfilling every goal envisioned by founder Will Farish when he purchased the first 240 acres of Lane’s End in 1979, on land that has been used for Thoroughbred breeding since the mid-19th century.

Farish, a successful oilman in his native Texas and a lifelong horseman, had his first stakes winner as an owner in 1967. Also renowned for his relationship with Queen Elizabeth II (bringing her to Keeneland in 1984 and serving as the U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom from 2001-04), Farish started a stallion division at Lane’s End in 1985 and gradually expanded it over the subsequent years as sires such as Dixieland Band became successful.

Lane's End sales prep. (Courtesy of Lane's End/Facebook)

In 1989, a Thoroughbred colt was foaled at Lane’s End that would elevate the establishment to the pinnacle of the sport. A.P. Indy, a son of Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew and out of a daughter of Triple Crown winner Secretariat, won the Belmont Stakes and Breeders’ Cup Classic during his 3-year-old season in 1992 and was voted Horse of the Year at the Eclipse Awards. But his tenure in the breeding shed would eventually overshadow those impressive achievements, as he became one of the two or three most influential sires of the past quarter-century in North American Thoroughbred breeding. A.P. Indy sired over 150 stakes winners, led the general sire list twice, became just as successful as a broodmare sire, and established a sire line through sons such as Mineshaft, Malibu Moon, Bernardini, and especially the late Pulpit that will continue to make an impact on horse racing for decades to come.

Lane’s End and the Thoroughbred industry mourned the passing of A.P. Indy last week after he died due to the infirmities of old age at 31. Read more about him in this America’s Best Racing’s profile by Tom Pedulla.

In recent years following the pensioning of A.P. Indy and leading sire Smart Strike, Lane’s End has done a superb job of building a stallion division for the 21st century, featuring veteran leading sire Candy Ride and very promising younger stallions such as Quality Road, Union Rags and Honor Code (a son of A.P. Indy), among others. Lane’s End, now spanning more than 2,300 picturesque acres, is also a leading consignor at Thoroughbred auctions across North America, and Will Farish/Lane’s End continue to have success owning racehorses as well, represented recently by last year’s Runhappy Travers Stakes winner Code of Honor. Read more about recent doings at Lane’s End under general manager Bill Farish in this America’s Best Racing profile from 2018.

Tours of Lane’s End are scheduled through Horse Country and include both a general stallion complex tour and a private tour. Lane’s End also offers a shuttle experience tour during Kentucky Derby 2020 week, suitable for 1-15 guests and offered on April 28, 29, and May 4. For more information on the Derby Week package, click here. Note: The tours do not include a visit with 2010 Horse of the Year and fan favorite Zenyatta, now a broodmare residing at Lane’s End.

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