Racing NSW chief executive Peter V’Landys has paid tribute to prolific owner and industry stalwart Bob Ingham, who has died at the age of 88.

Ingham and his brother Jack were known as the ‘chicken kings’ after building up their family poultry business, Ingham Enterprises, which they inherited following the death of their father.

The pair invested heavily in the racing industry, establishing the Crown Lodge training complex and Woodlands Stud breeding empire.

Jack died in 2003 and five years later, Bob Ingham sold the racing and breeding operation to Sheikh Mohammed, who rebranded it under the Godolphin banner.

Ingham had a quieter presence in recent years but he always maintained a strong interest in racing.

The family’s all cerise silks have been made famous across generations by horses of the ilk of Octagonal and Lonhro, who both went on to successful careers at stud.

Bob Ingham’s daughter Debbie Kepitis is also heavily involved in the sport and is a part-owner of now-retired champion Winx.

A passionate owner, Ingham has been remembered as a kind and generous man and V’Landys says his loss will be keenly felt.

“Bob Ingham, along with his brother Jack, created one of the largest thoroughbred racing and breeding empires ever seen in Australia,” V’Landys said.

“I’m personally very saddened by the passing of Bob – when I first entered the industry, he was of great assistance to me and provided much learning and information.

“Bob was a very kind man who had presence and a great personality. The industry is so much the poorer for the loss of one of our legends.

“Bob was also well known for his philanthropy, with his daughter Debbie Kepitis carrying on the racing tradition as a part-owner of the great Winx.”

Ingham’s legacy includes the Ingham Institute for Applied Medical Research, an independent centre for health and medical research he established at Liverpool in 2012.

He is survived by his children Lyn, Debbie, Robby, John and their families.

His funeral service will be by invitation only due to COVID-19 restrictions and in lieu of flowers, the family has requested any donations be made to the Ingham Institute for Applied Medical Research.


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