Magazine On-line [fall 2009]
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alumni profiles

Joe Thomson

Thomson wins harness racing honor

Joe Thomson ’66 was inducted into the Little Brown Jug Wall of Fame in September by a panel of national and international harness racing enthusiasts. A member of the Transylvania University Board of Trustees, Thomson is owner, with his wife, JoAnn, of Winbak Farm, a standardbred horse farm headquartered in Maryland, with operations in Delaware, New York, Pennsylvania, Maine, and Canada.

Thomson is among the leading figures in the standardbred industry. His Winbak Farm has bred Little Brown Jug winners Bettors Delight and No Pan Intended, and is ranked among the top two breeding operations in the sport. Since 1998, the farm has produced harness racing champions that have won $140 million, including back-to-back Horse of the Year honorees in No Pan Intended and Rainbow Blue, and Hambletonian winner Vivid Photo.

“We had not the wildest notion that we would become as big and successful as we have,” Thomson said of his 1991 launch of Winbak Farm. “JoAnn does all of the bookkeeping, including the complicated pedigree research and sales preparation, and is involved in everything I do.”

Thomson is one of four owners of The Red Mile harness racing track in Lexington, a trustee and director of the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame in Goshen, N.Y., and a director of the Hambletonian Society.

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