02/27/2017 5:19PM

Prominent Ohio breeder George Smith dies at 84

John Engelhardt
George Smith (left) with jockey Edgar Prado was a prominent breeder in Ohio for more than three decades.

George A. Smith, a prominent breeder and owner in Ohio for more than three decades, died in Kettering, Ohio, on Feb. 21 at age 84.

Smith and his business partner, dentist Wilbur Johnston, bought the 110-acre Woodburn Farm in Centerville, Ohio, in 1970. Over the next 35 years, they produced numerous stakes winners and state champions.

In 1988, 1993, and 2003, Smith and Johnston were honored as Ohio’s leading breeders.

Spoken Fur, their Florida-bred filly, won $675,000 during a 12-race career, including the Grade 1 Mother Goose and Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks in 2003.

According to Daily Racing Form statistics, horses bred by Smith and Johnston won 470 races and $6.2 million. Those totals include 44 stakes worth and $2.2 million.

Smith also served as president of the Ohio Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners in 1978-1979 and was a long-time member of Ohio’s Thoroughbred Advisory board.

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He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Norma; daughters Audrey Nichols and Amy Sauk; son Austin Smith, and five grandchildren.   

A memorial service will be held 11 a.m. Thursday at the Saint George Episcopal Church in Centerville, Ohio. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Old Friends Farm, 1841 Paynes Depot Rd., Georgetown, Ky. 40324.