D Wayne Lukas is an American horse trainer and a U.S. Racing Hall of Fame inductee….who holds the record for the most Triple Crown race wins with fourteen….has won twenty Breeders’ Cup races…. received five Eclipse Awards for his accomplishments….and his horses have won 25 year-end Eclipse Awards.
After D Wayne graduated from college in Wisconsin….he taught high school where for nine years he was a head basketball coach…as he began training quarter horses in California in 1968….when after 10 years of achievement that saw him train 24 world champions….he switched to training thoroughbreds….who became the first trainer to earn more than $100 million in purse money….while becoming the year’s top money winner 14 times.His horses have won the Kentucky Derby four times….the Preakness Stakes on six occasions….while claiming four times in the Belmont Stakes, including winning all three of the Classics of the Triple Crown in 1995 with Thunder Gulch (Kentucky Derby, Belmont Stakes) and Timber Country (Preakness)….making him the first trainer to sweep the Triple Crown Classic races with two different horses in a season….then In 2013, he surpassed Sunny Jim Fitzsimmons for the most Triple Crown race victories with 14. He has won Breeder’s Cup races a record 20 times…..as fillies Lukas has trained have won the Kentucky Oaks four times….while three of his horses….Lady’s Secret in 1986…. Criminal Type in 1990….and Charismatic in 1999….won the Eclipse Award for Horse of the Year….and he has a total of 25 horses that have won various Eclipse Awards. He has won the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Trainer four times….and in 1999, the same year his horse Charismatic came within 2 lengths of winning the Triple Crown….he was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame….as he was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 2007….thus becoming the first person to enter both the Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse halls of fame. In 2013 he was awarded the Eclipse Award of Merit for his accomplishments.
In 2014, at age 78, in his acceptance speech for the 2013 Eclipse Award of Merit, he stated, “When they start giving you awards…they are trying to get you to retire. Well, you young trainers get ready because I’m not retiring. We’re coming after you, so you’d better get up a little more early in the morning from now on. We’re coming after you with a vengeance.”
This video special on legendary horse trainer D Wayne Lukas showcases the relationship between D Wayne and his son, Jeff Lukas….who was the glue to the Lukas training operation…. and his father’s “right arm” ….whose great career was cut short by a tragic accident when he stepped in front of a rampaging frightened young thoroughbred….while attempting to keep his horse from being injured….as a man who nurtured fast horses and mentored gifted trainers in his shortened career….for any fan of horse racing will love to watch this video.