Cynthia Phipps, longtime breeder/owner and chairwoman of the Animal Medical Center, died Oct. 24 at New York-Presbyterian Hospital as a result of injuries suffered in an early morning fire in her Manhattan, N.Y., apartment. She was 62.
Phipps was a member of one of racing's foremost families. Her father, Ogden Phipps, raced Hall of Fame member Buckpasser and scores of other top runners, and her mother, Lillian, was a leading member of the steeplechase community. Her brother, prominent breeder/owner Ogden Mills "Dinny" Phipps, is chairman of The Jockey Club. An aunt, Barbara Janney, raced Hall of Fame filly Ruffian with her husband, Stuart S. Janney Jr.
Cynthia Phipps' grandmother, Mrs. Henry Carnegie Phipps, started the family in racing in a major way in the 1920s and stayed active in the sport until her death in 1970. Among her horses was the great sire and Hall of Fame member Bold Ruler.
Cynthia Phipps, whose stable was based in New York, raced homebred grade I winners Christmas Past, Gold Fever, and Versailles Treaty, plus several other graded winners.
Christmas Past, champion 3-year-old filly of 1982, won that year's Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I), Ruffian Handicap (gr. I), and three other graded stakes. At 4, she beat males in winning the Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. I). Gold Fever's big win came in the 1996 NYRA Mile Handicap (gr. I) in what was his final start.
Versailles Treaty lost out to Dance Smartly as champion 3-year-old filly in 1991. Versailles Treaty won the Alabama (gr. I) and Test (gr. I) Stakes, plus the Gazelle Handicap (gr. I), and was second in three grade I stakes, including the Breeders' Cup Distaff to Dance Smartly. As a 4-year-old, she captured another grade I event, the Ruffian Handicap, and ran second again in the Distaff.
As a broodmare, Versailles Treaty produced grade II winner Saarland for Phipps. Saarland won the 2001 Remsen Stakes (gr. II). Phipps' most recent stakes winner, Jackpot, won the 2004 Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. II).
In addition to her brother, Phipps is survived by a half-brother, Robert L. Phipps, and half-sisters Lillian Rousseau and Florence Chase.
Services will be held at the Church of the Advent in Old Westbury, N.Y., at 10:30 a.m. Oct. 27.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Animal Medical Center, 510 East 62nd Street, New York, N.Y., 10065.