Colonel John

Colonel John

Anne M. Eberhardt

WinStar Launches Colonel John Campaign

Campaign will promote the first crop of foals from Colonel John.

WinStar Farm has launched a campaign—called “First Recruits”--to promote the first crop of foals from their multiple grade I-winning stallion Colonel John.

The campaign features a contest using Facebook where the general public can cast votes by clicking the “Like” button on photos of 32 Colonel John foals that were selected by a panel.

Winner of the Santa Anita Derby and Travers Stakes (both gr. I) in 2008, Colonel John stands at Kenny Troutt's WinStar Farm near Versailles, KY.

The contest consists of four rounds, and the winner will be based on the highest number of votes. Visit to view the lineup of 32 foal photos and cast your votes.

“We’re fortunate to have a great fan base and breeder base here at WinStar, and we’re going to continue to strive to grow the sport of horse racing through both,” said Robert Hammond, director of Bloodstock at WinStar, in a statement. “When we got around to breeders this spring and discovered how good Colonel John’s first foals are, we thought an interactive contest like this would be a great and different way to promote the foals, while offering something fun for our 10,000-plus Facebook fans and WinStar Stablemates members.”

WinStar solicited photos from owners of first foals by Colonel John. Once photos were received, a panel including Dan Pride of Fasig-Tipton, Tom Thornbury of Keeneland, and Donna Brothers of NBC and ESPN reviewed the photos and selected the top 32 foals solely on looks. No information was given, including breeder or pedigree.

The first round of voting for fans runs until Sept. 15 at noon. The 16 foals with the most “Likes” will advance into the “Sweet 16” round, and all previous votes will carry over. The following rounds will be the “Elite 8” round from Oct. 1 and “Final Four” round from Oct. 15. All votes reset to zero after the top four have been established, and on Nov. 1 at noon the foal with the most votes from the “Final Four” round will be honored as the “Top Recruit” and winner of the contest.

WinStar will have a prize drawing for all voters who participated. All foal owners who entered will also receive prizes that will vary based on how far each foal gets in the contest. The grand prize for the owner of the “Top Recruit” will receive a free season to Colonel John in 2012.

The significance of the starting number of 32 represents the number of U.S. Army service members in Colonel John Geider’s first platoon. Geider is the namesake of the popular racehorse and stallion and is personal friends of Kenny Troutt, Bill Casner and family.

For more information about the contest, including rules and prizes, visit