Russell B. Jones Jr. no longer is working for the Walnut Green bloodstock agency that he and his late brother, Richard, founded in 1980. The Joneses sold Walnut Green to the Mark Reid Bloodstock Agency and partners in September of 2005, and Russell Jones remained associated with the prominent Pennsylvania-based business, serving as its president.
“When I sold the company, I had a three-year contract that expired at the end of 2008, so I’m a free man,” Jones said Jan. 13. “There is a non-compete agreement for three years, so I can’t be competing with them in any part of what they do, but I’ll be doing stuff for myself and I’ll probably be looking at opportunities that don’t compete and that are still inside my area of expertise. One thing I will be doing is a lot more fox hunting.”
Jones is in Kentucky for the Keeneland January horses of all ages sale.
“I’m here because Walnut Green is selling horses for people who have been my friends and customers for a long time,” Jones said. “I thought it would be good thing to come down and make sure they were looked after. It’s not that they (the Walnut Green owners and employees) can’t do it. It’s just that there was a comfort in it to the people who have been with me a long time.”
Jones still owns the farm where the Walnut Green Agency is based, and he has a four-member broodmare band.
“I don’t have any horses in training now, but that doesn’t mean I won’t,” Jones said. “I’m going to have some fun is what I’m going to do. I think it’s a good time to be on the sidelines. I’ve got the number of my mares down to a point where it’s not too bad, so I’m in pretty good shape, I think. I’m ready to coast.”