|TVG BREEDERS' CUP DIRT MILE|
3rd at 3TVG BREEDERS' CUP DIRT MILE
( 8f , to Albertus Maximus, Rebellion (GB), defeating My Pal Charlie, Mast Track, Pyro, Lewis Michael, Lord Admiral, Well Armed, Slew's Tiznow, Slew's Tizzy, Surf Cat ).
Brandon and Marianne Chase are known for precision instruments. About a decade ago, they formed Chase-Durer, now a respected name among high-quality Swiss timepieces. The company designs and markets watches, which have a particular following among pilots and military forces.
Former movie producers, the Chases have a precision instrument of another sort entirely. Their homebred Albertus Maximus parlayed a well-timed effort in the $916,000 TVG BreedersÕ Cup Dirt Mile into his first major victory.
The win was the first in the BreedersÕ Cup for the Chases, but theyÕve tasted success before, particularly with a pair of runners by 1983 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner SunnyÕs Halo. Wood Memorial (gr. I) winner Irgun carried their colors, as did Race the Wild Wind, whose scores included the Santa Maria Handicap (gr. I).
Race the Wild Wind has become a foundation mare for the couple. Her first foal, the Forty Niner filly Chasethewildwind, produced Albertus Maximus and graded stakes-placed Chasethegold. Subsequent foals included French champion King Charlemagne and English group winner Meshaheer. Race the Wild WindÕs last foal is a yearling filly by SadlerÕs Wells and she was barren to that same stallion before he was pensioned earlier this year.
The family behind Race the Wild Wind is loaded, too. Her great-granddamÕs descendants include international champions Trillion, Triptych, and Generous. Her fourth dam is an unraced full sister to Gallant Fox, 1930 Horse of the Year and Triple Crown victor. Other major winners drip steadily from the extended pedigree.
The Chases keep their three U.S.-based mares at Robin ScullyÕs Clovelly Farm near Lexington, Ky. The small group includes Chasethewildwind, who has a Malibu Moon weanling colt and is in foal to First Samurai, and her half-sister, Chasetheragingwind, who has an Indian Charlie weanling filly and was bred to Songandaprayer.
Jockey Club Gold Cup (gr. I) winner Albert the Great, third in the 2001 BreedersÕ Cup Classic (gr. I) behind Tiznow and Sakhee, sired Albertus Maximus. The $3-million earner stood at Three Chimneys Farm near Midway, Ky., through the 2007 season, but moved this year to Pin Oak Lane Farm near New Freedom, Pa. His fee was $4,000. The 4-year-old Albertus Maximus is a member of his second crop, as is the young stallionÕs other major runner, 2007 Wood Memorial winner (gr. I) Nobiz Like Shobiz.
Albertus Maximus was foaled at Clovelly and stayed there until he was sent to Lexington-based Charles Lopresti for his early training. Jeff Ownby, manager of Clovelly, said the Chases breed mostly to race.
ÒThey do such a good job with breeding their mares,Ó said Ownby. ÒThese are good people, good owners, and they really do care about their horses.Ó
Ownby, who oversees the breeding of approximately 100 mares annually, remembers Albertus Maximus as a foal.
ÒHe was a nice, healthy, big foal,Ó said Ownby. ÒI wish I could say I knew this colt was going to be so good, but I had no premonition. When you watch them running around their paddocks, they all look athletic.Ó
Ownby knows a good horse. Clovelly, which has been in operation since 1959, bred and raised 2003 BreedersÕ Cup Classic - Powered by Dodge (gr. I) winner Pleasantly Perfect, French champion Ancient Regime, and prominent sire Silver Hawk.
The Chases met in Denmark while both were producing films. He was born in New York City and she was a Copenhagen native. They settled together in Beverly Hills, Calif., and share a mutual enjoyment of horses.
ÒÉAt one point in my life, I rode Thoroughbreds on our track in the morning in Klampenborg, which is, compared to (Santa Anita), a mini, mini, mini track,Ó Marianne Chase told the media after the Dirt Mile. ÒAnd my love for horses has always been there. ItÕs just probably the most important thing in my life besides my family.Ó By Jill Williams
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