He’s had an illustrious career riding horses as a jockey.
Nearly $300 million in career earnings and fourth all-time in wins. That was on the track, Pat Day is now looking to help send a message off of it as his heart desires to share and promote the gospel. He’s using his platform to help spread the message and is the President of the Race Track Chaplaincy of America.
“God blessed me with my talents and ability and it took a while until that occurred to me,” Day said. “My successful racing career has given me some exposure and a platform in which to promote the Gospel. I feel the divine direction in the sport of horse racing led me here, and now I’m open and willing to go basically share my story and testimony and salvation in the belief of the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Day will be spreading the word locally on Sunday when he comes to Germantown United Methodist Church at speak at 6 p.m. He’ll share his testimony of his past addictions and convictions.
Day was born in Colorado and has made his home in Louisville since 1984. He’s rode in all the major horse races. Day has won all three Triple Crown races, the Kentucky Derby once, the Preakness Stakes five times and the Belmont Stakes three times. He is a four-time winner of the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Jockey and was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1991. Day also received the George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award in 1985, given annually to a North American jockey who demonstrates the highest standards of professional and personal conduct. In 1995, he was voted the Mike Venezia Memorial Award for “extraordinary sportsmanship and citizenship”.
Early in his career, he had substance abuse problems with both drugs and alcohol, but became a born-again Christian in the early 1980’s. He has been involved with the Race Track Chaplaincy of America since his conversion.
“I was involved in racing when I came to Christ. I made calls into the ministry at that time and recognized I had been blessed with talents and ability and praise the honor of Glory for that,” Day said.
After undergoing hip surgery that forced him to miss the Derby for the first time in 21 years, Day announced his retirement on August 3, 2005 after a 32-year career. He said he would retire and commit the rest of his life purely to spreading the Gospel.
“The Lord led me to retire and sharing the Gospel,” Day added.
He’s been all over the world in doing so, sharing his ministry in Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Uruguay and Puerto Rico to name a few. While he’s predominantly in Southern Indiana and Louisville, Day will be making his way to the area for the first time.
What led him here was Dave Hampton, a local native he met a while back and Hampton asked him to come speak to his church. The two arranged and coordinated a date and Sunday he’ll be here.
“I haven’t been to that part of Kentucky and I know how beautiful it is up that way so I’m looking forward to it,” Day said.