Be it a Thoroughbred, Saddlebred or another breed, if you love horses, you will find them in Kentucky.
Have you heard of Man O’ War? This great race horse is immortalized and buried on the grounds of the Kentucky Horse Park - more about the Park later. Secretariat, the winner of the Triple Crown of racing, ran the first leg at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., and is buried at Claiborne Farm in Paris (Near Lexington). Lexington horse farms are also the resting places for the last two Triple Crown winners, Seattle Slew and Affirmed. Other Derby winners that are standing stud at farms in the Lexington area include Big Brown (currently in Austrailia), Fusaichi Pegasus and Smarty Jones.
The premier location in Kentucky to learn everything you always wanted to know about horses is the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington. Covering over 1200 acres, this working horse farm is open to the public and provides much more than just a great opportunity to take pictures of pretty horses. With daily horse shows during the summer season, the International Museum of the Horse, the Saddlebred Museum and events booked almost every weekend of the year, there is always something to see or do at the Park. The end of April brings the Rolex Three Day Event to the park. Here world-class competitors compete for top spots in the Olympic Games. 2010 the Kentucky Horse Park had the honor of hosting the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games – the first time it has been held outside of Europe. Come winter and the holiday season, the park shows off its holiday colors with Southern Lights, a drive through wonderland of holiday displays and lights.
Shelbyville, Ky., is know as the Saddlebred Capital of the World and rightly so with over 80 registered Saddlebred farms in the county. The Shelbyville Horse Show is the precursor to the The World Championship Horse Show at the Kentucky State Fair in August This exciting and prestigious event, held annually in conjunction with the Kentucky State Fair, crowns world champion Saddlebreds in different divisions each year. The show attracts people from all across the country and the world including more than 2,000 horses competing for over $1 million in awards. Horse farm tours are available through the Shelbyville/Shelby Country Tourism Office.