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Keeneland Library Series, featuring new works about Thoroughbred racing, returns on Jan. 21


The popular Keeneland Library Series, which features new works about Thoroughbred racing, will kick off 2020 with two programs that go beyond highlighting traditional nonfiction material when Robin Traywick Williams discusses her award-winning novel, “The Key to the Quarter Pole,” on Jan. 21, and the documentary film “Born to Rein” is shown Feb. 4.

“Our Lecture Series continues to showcase the culminating work of researchers who have tapped into the Keeneland Library’s resources to generate new contributions to the industry record,” Head Librarian Roda Ferraro said. “We are pleased to provide varied writers and artists a platform to share those contributions.”

The Library Lecture Series is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. Guests can reserve a ticket attickets.keeneland.com or call (859) 254-3412 and ask for Keeneland Ticketing. Registered guests may check in at the Library entrance. Doors open at 6 p.m., and the event begins at 6:30 p.m.

“The Key to the Quarter Pole” is the story of race track characters struggling with moral dilemmas, large and small, and revolves around Louisa Ferncliff as she trains her last best horse, Alice’s Restaurant. It was named Best Unpublished Novel by James River Writers and Richmond Magazine as a manuscript.

Williams, former chair of the Virginia Racing Commission and past president of the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, is an award-winning journalist, speaker and horsewoman. Following her presentation, the Library will host a reception and a book signing. A limited number of copies of her book will be available for purchase.

“Born to Rein” tells the stories of legendary Nebraska horsemen Marion and Jack Van Berg and John Nerud, focusing on their rise from humble beginnings in America’s heartland to the pinnacle of Thoroughbred racing, and highlights the state’s role in the Thoroughbred industry.

Fellow Hall of Fame trainers Bob Baffert, D. Wayne Lukas, Bill Mott and Carl Nafzger and Hall of Fame jockeys Pat Day and Gary Stevens were interviewed for the documentary.

Following the screening, guests will enjoy a reception and a DVD signing with filmmakers Jody Lamp and Melody Dobson of the American Doorstop Project. A limited number of copies of the DVD will be available for purchase.

The Keeneland Library was established in 1939 when Keeneland Trustee and Director William Arnold Hanger donated a 2,300-volume Turf collection of Robert James Turnbull. Today, the Library is a public research and reference library that is one of the world’s largest repositories of information related to the Thoroughbred and the caretaker of many priceless materials.

The Library is open Mondays through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Additional events in 2020 will be announced.

From Keeneland Library


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