Headley Bell

Amermans Credit Performance to Best Supporting Actors

Most of us, in this business, have experienced times when we would implore Jerry Amerman to leave that flier, promoting a horseracing syndicate, right where her husband John had thrown it--in the wastebasket. Happily, while they have sampled the full spectrum of the Turf's ups and downs in the 35 years since, their sense of fulfilment only continues to grow. And the sport has itself welcomed corresponding gains from their presence: John's judgement, seasoned by a stellar business career, has been drafted by numerous regulatory and benevolent bodies; Jerry's love...

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Taking Stock: Dr. Settle's Dream is a Winner

Was it divine intervention? As the story goes, sometime in late 1923 or early 1924, a Kentucky pastor, Rev. Dr. Thomas Settle, convinced some state legislators in Frankfort not to end legalized gambling in Kentucky by repealing parimutuel wagering, much to the relief of the Kentucky Jockey Club and other concerned horsemen. Most ministers may have taken the opposite tack at the time, but not Dr. Settle, and this made him stand out. A well-travelled Englishman who'd found his way to a small congregation on Main St. and Bell Ct....

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First-Crop Yearling Previews: Omaha Beach

The 2022 class of first-crop yearling sires features a diverse batch of Kentucky-based young stallions including a pair of Breeders' Cup champions, two sons of reigning top sire Into Mischief, five graded stakes winners at two and five Grade I winners on turf. Throughout the course of the yearling sales season, we will feature a series of freshman sires as their first crop points toward the sales ring. Check out past editions of our series here.   Omaha Beach (War Front--Charming, by Seeking the Gold) set the bar high for this...

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Pastures New Maintain Old Standards at Mill Ridge

For a farm so steeped in heritage, and so properly respectful of it, there's no mistaking the vitality, the aversion to complacency, animating Mill Ridge with a sixth generation now at the reins. Back in April the Bell family grieved farm founder Alice Headley Chandler, a revered matriarch not just around their own hearth but among the whole Bluegrass community. But their loss, while poignantly refreshing their gratitude and sense of privilege, could only reinforce an engrained determination that her legacy be honored by all the ambition that had characterised...

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Alice Headley Chandler: 1926-2021

A life as long and rich as that of Alice Headley Chandler, which drew to a peaceful close on Tuesday, Apr. 6, at her home in Lexington, Kentucky, at the age of 95, is measured by four generations--from her surviving contemporaries to her great-grandchildren--for whom the black raiment of mourning will surely be brightened by cheerful scarves of pride. And that's not just because of the consolations available in remembrance of a wonderful character or celebration of her wonderful achievements. For this iconic Kentucky horsewoman was always animated by a...

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Book Three Concludes at Keeneland

LEXINGTON, KY - The Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale's two-session Book 3 section concluded with another day of steady trade Friday in Lexington. Bill Betz made the day's highest bid, going to $270,000 late in the day to acquire the racing/ broodmare prospect Divine Queen (Divine Park) from the Trackside Farm consignment. The mare was one of four to bring $200,000 or more during the session. While only 292 of the 401 catalogued head went through the ring Friday, 235 sold for a buy-back rate of just 19.52%. Through the...

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Mill Ridge Farm Sets 2021 Stud Fee for Oscar Performance

Mill Ridge Farm has set the 2021 stud fee for world record turf miler Oscar Performance (Kitten's Joy) at $15,000, LFSN. Bred and raced by Jerry and John Amerman, he won the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf, captured Grade I stakes at 2, 3, and 4, and broke a 20-year track record at Belmont Park at a mile in 1:31.23, all with no Lasix. "We celebrate his third year, for we have seen so many of his foals and they are genuine quality," said Headley Bell. "He has every opportunity...

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Price Bell, Jr. Named Mill Ridge Farm General Manager

Price Bell, Jr. has been appointed to the position of general manager at Mill Ridge Farm. Upon completing his MBA from Vanderbilt's Owen School in 2010, Bell returned to Lexington and his life's passion, the Thoroughbred industry. With conviction for the sport and believing in the great opportunity to develop the industry's fan base, he became actively involved with the founding of Horse Country, while assisting as a bloodstock agent for the Mill Ridge affiliate, Nicoma Bloodstock. He serves on the boards of the KTA-KTOB, TOBA, National Museum of Racing,...

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Your Horse Country Needs You!

Across the world, the economic tsunami triggered by the pandemic has been stemmed, to some degree, by massive government interventions. But these can only go so far, whether in funds, duration or reach. Beyond those margins, many hugely deserving enterprises find themselves perilously exposed--and it will fall onto society, onto each one of us, to help determine which are worth saving. Broadsided by this unaccountable emergency into a sudden, existential crisis, Horse Country is now turning to the community it serves and making its own case for salvation. That's a...

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What Draws Us To This Industry, By Headley Bell

About the time 'spring was about to sprung,' we all got hit...and hit very hard. As a way to adapt and hopefully share, about 8:30 each morning I posted short videos on Twitter. The grass was just starting to green and the birds were starting to sing and yes, we were welcoming our first crop of Oscar Performance babies here at Mill Ridge Farm. It made for a very uplifting setting and the response to these videos is heartwarming. At the same time, Horse Country was actively working with their...

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Oscar Performance Sires First Foal

Multiple Grade I winner Oscar Performance (Kitten's Joy--Devine Actress, by Theatrical {Ire}) was represented by his first foal Jan. 15 when a bay filly out of Proud Heroine (Proud Citizen) was born at Starwood Farm. Bred by George Krikorian, the filly is a maternal great-granddaughter of the breeder's MGISW Hollywood Story (Wild Rush). "I'm in love with her," Starwood farm manager Tony Burton said. "She is a beauty." Bred and raced by John and Jerry Amerman, Oscar Performance was a Grade I winner at two, three and four, taking out...

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