Jake Delhomme Joins TDN Writers' Room Podcast

Touchuponastar | Hodges Photography

He's best known as a former NFL quarterback who nearly beat Tom Brady in Super Bowl XXXVIII. But Jake Delhomme, who starred for the Carolina Panthers, is also a passionate horse owner who, along with his father Jerry and his brother Jeff, operates Set-Hut Stable LLC. The Delhomme clan focuses on Louisiana-breds and this year they have come up with one of the best ever. Touchuponastar (Star Guitar) is 11-for-14 lifetime and will run this weekend at Fair Grounds, either against open company in Saturday's $500,000 GII New Orleans Classic or against state-breds the next day in the Star Guitar S.

To talk about Touchuponastar, his love affair with racing and even a bit about his NFL career, Delhomme joined this week's TDN Writers' Room podcast presented by Keeneland. He was this week's Green Group Guest of the Week.

The Delhommes bought Touchuponastar for $15,000 at the Texas Thoroughbred Association Yearling sale, which has turned out to be quite the bargain as the horse has earned $708,100.

Jake Delhomme Joins the TDN Writers' Room from Thoroughbred Daily News on Vimeo.

“He's been a dream come true, to be quite honest,” Delhomme said. “I was lucky enough to purchase him at the Texas yearling sale. He was one that I followed, along with the breeders, Coteau Grove Farms. They have done a marvelous job of bringing along some fine animals. Andrew Cary is their bloodstock advisor, and I've been involved with Andrew since 2007. The first time I went to Keeneland and bought my first mare there, off of Hill 'n' Dale Farms, he was the director of sales then. We developed a friendship over the years. We'll go to Coteau Grove and see the horses. There was something about this horse I always liked and I watched him grow up. He looks very much like his sire, Star Guitar, who was a great regional racehorse here in Louisiana. So this was one that I had my eye on. I try to buy a couple of yearlings every year, try to breed a couple. We're a fairly small stable, eight to 10 horses. So we went to the Texas sale and I bid just one time. I was watching the action and I was prepared to go a lot higher. It was just one of those good deals and we were lucky enough to get him.”

While his brother Jeff is listed as the trainer, Jake is very hands-on and works right alongside his brother and father.

“I do pretty much anything and everything,” Delhomme said. “I'd like to think we're a selfless stable, to be quite honest. Set-Hut is the owner and Dad and Jeff both train. But I'll be honest, it's all of us. We're there every day. It's a family affair. Had I not played sports, I have a pretty good inclination that I would have gone into racing right away.”

Like many retired athletes that have gone into racing after their careers are over, Delhomme said that the sport fills a need in his life and keeps his competitive juices flowing.

“Racing helps fill that competitive void,” Delhomme said. “I mean I retired when I was, what, 37 or 38 years old? But I retired from football, not from real life. At that age, you're just kind of getting started, so to speak. Racing has given me that avenue. I've never looked for anything else to do once I finished playing. You need something to do because you're used to just this lifestyle of work, work, work, work. I think anyone can attest that being in the horse racing business is just that, work, work, work. It's all the time.”

In our breeding spotlight section we took a look at the Coolmore stallion Jack Christopher and the WinStar stallion Global Campaign.

Elsewhere on the podcast, which is also sponsored by the Pennsylvania Horse Breeders' Association, Coolmore, 1/ST Racing, West Point Thoroughbreds, WinStar and XBTV.com, the team of Randy Moss, Bill Finley and Zoe Cadman discussed the news that Nysos (Nyquist) has been sidelined and will probably miss all of the Triple Crown races and the latest developments in Maryland, where 1/ST Racing is donating Pimlico to the state. And they previewed the big weekend cards coming up at Fair Grounds and at Turfway Park, where 3-year-olds will vie for Derby points in the GII Louisiana Derby and the GIII Jeff Ruby Steaks S.

To watch the podcast, click here. To listen to an audio of the podcast, click here.

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