Brous Stable; Wachtel Stable, Jack Hammer; Gary Barber
Ron the Greek, Jockey Gold Cup, Belmont Park, 28th September 2013
Trained by Bill Mott, Sire: Full Mandate. Dam: Flambé
New York partners Nils Brous, a relative newcomer to Thoroughbred ownership, met Adam Wachtel when they tried to buy a company from Joe Sweedler, who was an original partner in graded stakes winner Attila’s Storm. Brous became a partner on Attila’s Storm with Wachtel, Barry K. Schwartz – the co-founder of Calvin Klein and former President and CEO of the New York Racing Association - and Double S Stable in January, 2005. Attila’s Storm won the Grade 3 Toboggan Stakes, finished second in the Grade 2 Alfred G. Vanderbilt and third in the Grade 1 King’s Bishop Stakes. He also finished fourth and fifth in the 2005 and 2006 Breeders’ Cup Sprint, respectively.
Brous is a 49-year-old native of New York, who was raised in Woodmere, New York, not far from Belmont Park. His father owned a couple horses there. “I went with him to the stables at six o’clock in the morning and always loved it,” he said. “I always wanted to own horses.”
He is a private equity investor who worked for Goldman Sachs on Wall Street after graduating from Harvard. He then spent ten years working for Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. He and his wife Stephanie, who is the granddaughter of Robert Meyerhoff of Spectacular Bid fame, have two children, Brandon and Ethan.
Adam Wachtel is a 51-year-old businessman who was born in Suffern, New York, a 45-minute drive from New York City. His dad, Ed, owned horses in New York for years and Wachtel bought his first horse, Ms. Stalwart, while he was a student at Emory College. He knew what he was doing. Ms. Stalwart produced six winners from six foals, including graded stakes winner Stalwart Member.
Wachtel races horses on his own, in partnership with his dad until his death in January, and in partnership with friends and business associates. He and his wife Susan have three children.
Jack T. Hammer bred Ron the Greek, naming him for his friend Ron Skrumbellos, a long-time Thoroughbred breeder who first saw the young colt in Ocala and was inspired by him during a two-year battle with lung cancer. Skrumbellos died in August, 2010, without ever seeing the horse run.
Hammer is a certified property manager and licensed real estate broker. He is a life member of the Atlanta Board of Realtors Million Dollar Round Table, a founder of HIS Management which operates 5,000 multi-family units, Chairman of the Board of the American Opportunity Foundation, a non-profit organization that advocates affordable housing and a founding member of the Southeastern Affordable Housing Management Association.
Hammer founded and is the director and owner of Buckingham Stable, a racing and breeding company in Florida, where he lives.
Gary Barber, a native of South Africa, is the co-founder of Spyglass Entertainment, whose list of successful movies includes “Seabiscuit,” one of 50 films with Barber as executive producer.
A lifelong racing fan. Barber won a 1982 handicapping contest by the Rand Daily Mail in South Africa for an all-expense-paid trip to the Arlington Million.
He worked as an accountant in his home country before immigrating to the United States three years after his brother Cecil. His first job in America was as a CPA. Gary and Cecil have partnered on horses, and had two starters in Breeders’ Cup races. Gary has also partnered with Team Valor International, Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, Allamira Racing Stable, Kevin Tsujihara, and trainer Jerry Hollendorfer.