Indiana Horse Racing Hall of Fame

Indiana Horse Racing Hall of Fame

Breeder, owner Dr. James Carmichael joins state hall.

WRS Apolliticalivory 2020 Indiana Grand QHRAI Derby. Coady Photography

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The Indiana Horse Racing Association (IHRA) recently announced the newest class of inductees into the organization’s Hall of Fame. Ernie Gaskin, longtime Standardbred owner, trainer, and breeder, and Dr. James Carmichael (posthumously), longtime advocate, owner, and breeder in Quarter Horse racing, have been selected for the prestigious honor. 

The late Dr. James Carmichael of Sullivan, Indiana, was a longtime practicing veterinarian in Sullivan County. He joined his father, Eugene, in creating Carmichael Stock Farm, a Quarter Horse breeding operation in the western part of the state. They raced across the country before Quarter Horse pari-mutuel racing came to Indiana in 1997.

In the 1970’s, the Carmichaels purchased Jaguar Rocket to add to their breeding and racing operation in the Hoosier State. The California-bred grey stallion was a stakes winner in the late 1960s, winning 10 of 40 starts before being offered for sale by a Hollywood director. His impact on the state of Indiana has endured the past three decades. Jaguar Rocket is an inductee into the Quarter Horse Racing Association of Indiana (QHRAI) Hall of Fame and has a stakes race named in his honor at Indiana Grand.

In addition to breeding and racing Quarter Horses, Dr. Carmichael also served on the board of QHRAI for more than a decade, an organization he stayed active in until his death in 2009. The Purdue School of Veterinary Medicine graduate also served on the Thoroughbred Breed Development Committee where he was elected chairman. His wife, Jan, still resides on the family farm and maintains several horses on the property.

Both Gaskin and Dr. Carmichael will be inducted into the IHRA Hall of Fame during a special ceremony Sunday, October 24, 2021, at Indiana Grand Racing & Casino in Shelbyville. Portraits of the inductees will be added to the display on the mezzanine level at Indiana Grand following the ceremony. Gaskin and Dr. Carmichael join a list of 17 previous inductees into the IHRA Hall of Fame. 

The Indiana Horse Racing Association, Inc. (IHRA), an Indiana Not-For-Profit Corporation, was founded in 2014 for the following purposes: 1) Establishing and maintaining the Indiana Horse Racing Hall of Fame to recognize leaders in the Indiana horse racing industry; 2) Preserving the history, heritage and traditions of the sport; and 3) Educating the public about the rich and colorful history of horse racing in Indiana and its many contributions to Indiana agriculture and Indiana’s economy. The organization consists of six board members representing all three racing breeds in the state of Indiana.

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