Home Hall of Fame Breeders Pre-1980 Herb Armstrong (Valley Farm)

Herb Armstrong (Valley Farm)

(1913-1975, Inducted 2003)

From 1936 until his death in 1975, Armstrong operated Valley Farm in his home town of Harrington. That nursery led all Washington breeders by money won seven times (1952, 1954-59), by number of winners for 15 years (1944, 1946-59) and by number of races won for 14 years (1945, 1947-59). For 25 consecutive years (1944-68), Armstrong was ranked among the top 30 breeders in the state. During one 18-year stretch, he bred 87 horses, of which 67 were winners, an incredible 77 percent ratio. Armstrong’s best homebreds included Washington horses of the year Rover Bill (1952), Big Success (1955), Johnie Mike (1956) and Sir William (1957). The latter captured the Santa Anita Derby that year over the immortal Round Table and was the leading Washington-bred earner of his day. Other notable achievements for this legendary horseman include being the first Washington breeder whose state-bred runners earned over $1 million, as well as being named Washington’s 1960 turfman of the year.

Read the expanded profile in the WASHINGTON THOROUGHBRED MAGAZINE, January 2004, page 36.