Hancock, son of the late legendary breeder A.B. “Bull” Hancock, operates Cherry Valley, as well as serves as president of his family’s Claiborne Farm near Paris, Ky. Comprising approximately 250 acres, Cherry Valley is now part of Claiborne.
War Pass is the second grade I stakes winner for his dam, Vue, who was bred in Kentucky by Cherry Valley and the Gamely Corp. The daughter of Mr. Prospector was stakes-placed twice before being retired as a broodmare. Her first foal, Oath, won the Spinaway Stakes (gr. I), and is also the dam of grade II-placed Vision of Beauty. Vue’s last foal, a 2006 Monarchos colt, was sold at this year’s Keeneland September yearling sale for $200,000 to Nick Zito, who trains War Pass. The mare died last July from colic.
The Juvenile winner’s second dam, the Hoist the Flag mare Harbor Flag, was bred by Hancock in partnership with The Marjory Corp. In addition to Vue, Harbor Flag is the dam of grade III winner Country Light and multiple stakes winner Packet, who is the dam of stakes winner Great Intentions.
Consigned to the 2006 Keeneland September yearling sale, War Pass was purchased by owner Robert LaPenta for $180,000. With the colt's undefeated record and status as winter-book favorite for the 2008 Kentucky Derby – Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), that purchase price now looks like a bargain.
Additional stakes winners bred by Cherry Valley (alone or in partnerships) include grade II winner Sintra, Country Light, English group I winner Shadeed (with Gamely Corp.), and Pomeroy, whose four graded stakes wins include the King’s Bishop and Forego, both grade I.
War Pass is one of 32 stakes winners for his sire, Cherokee Run, the champion sprinter who stands at Sheikh Mohammed's Darley near Lexington. Additional 2007 graded stakes winners sired by Cherokee Run are Zanjero, Indian Flare, and Chelokee.