Willis Horton

Will Take Charge To Darley Japan

Champion Will Take Charge (Unbridled's Song--Take Charge Lady, by Dehere), whose 13 black-type winners includes this year's GI Hollywood Gold Cup hero There Goes Harvard, will join the stallion roster at Darley Japan in 2023, according to a post on the nursery's website. Will Take Charge has stood his first eight seasons at stud at Three Chimneys Farm. Campaigned by the late Willis Horton during his first two seasons at the races and trained by D. Wayne Lukas, Will Take Charge won the 2013 GI Travers S. and GII Pennsylvania...

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Owner of Champions Willis Horton Dies

Willis Horton, an owner and breeder in Thoroughbred racing for decades whose Willis Horton Racing campaigned champions Will Take Charge (Unbridled's Song) and Take Charge Brandi (Giant's Causeway), passed away Friday at the age of 82 after a bout with COVID-induced pneumonia. The news was first reported by Daily Racing Form. Originally from Zach, Ark., Horton grew up on a farm and competed in rodeos. His wife of 64 years, Glenda, had a similar upbringing, and the two owned quarter horses before branching out into the world of Thoroughbreds. Horton's...

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Andthewinneris, Impressive Maiden Winner on Turf, Tries Dirt in Bashford Manor

Susan Moulton's Andthewinneris (Oscar Performance), an impressive debut winner over the turf at Keeneland in April (video), will move to the main track when he makes his second start in the Bashford Manor S. at Churchill Downs July 4. The bay colt had his second work over the Churchill main track Sunday, going four furlongs from the gate in :49.60 (50/95). He worked the same distance in a bullet :46.80 (1/156) June 18. "There were, and still are, a lot of options we had for him after he broke his...

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Last Samurai 'Springs' Upset in Oaklawn H.

Arkansas' own Willis Horton celebrated yet another big-race success right in his backyard, as Last Samurai (Malibu Moon) re-rallied at the fence beneath veteran reinsman Jon Court and ran away late to cause a 12-1 upset in Saturday's $1-million GII Oaklawn H. Drawn two in a field reduced to seven by the early scratching of Thomas Shelby (Curlin), Last Samurai had good speed from the inside and shared the lead with second choice Plainsman (Flatter) under the wire for the first time, as favored Fearless (Ghostzapper)--runner-up to the Horton part-owned...

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Silver State Proves His Mettle

Winchell Thoroughbreds and Willis Horton Racing's Silver State (Hard Spun) upped his win streak to six while providing trainer Steve Asmussen with a third GI Hill 'n' Dale Metropolitan H. in the last four years. The historic Met Mile also gave Silver State an automatic spot in the starting gate for the GI Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile should his connections choose that event over the GI Breeders' Cup Classic. By My Standards (Goldencents) rallied to cut the winning margin to a length after missing the break, while stretching-out GI Carter...

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Will Take Charge's Will's Secret Creates More 'Buzz' In Honeybee

Will's Secret added her third consecutive victory, while adding 50 qualifying points to the GI Kentucky Oaks, in Saturday's GIII Honeybee S. at Oaklawn Park. Sent off the 2-1 choice, the dark bay rushed up to contend with the Ken McPeek-trained duo of Tabor Hall (Candy Ride {Arg}), breaking from the inside, and Oliviaofthedesert (Bernardini), who settled in the three path around the first turn, while 'TDN Rising Star' Sun Path drafted behind the leading trio. Eagerly taking the advantage following a half in :24.25, Will's Secret was again headed...

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Mongolian Groom, Willis Horton, Among Jan. 15 Podcast Topics

The Breeders' Cup-commissioned investigation into the death of Mongolian Groom (Hightail) in the GI Breeders' Cup Classic was among the main subjects tackled this week in the TDN Writers' Room podcast, and the crew questioned whether or not the horse should have been scratched. Click here to listen.  The report revealed that examining veterinarians determined during pre-race examinations that Mongolian Groom was "stiff" and "choppy" behind, the reasons why he among 73 Breeders' Cup entrants put on a "watch list" and was one of 24 horses selected for "extra scrutiny"...

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TDN Writers' Room for January 16, 2020, with Willis Horton

As the writers came on the air, the Breeders' Cup released a 25-page report on Mongolian Groom's injury, ushering in what may be a new era of transparency in horse racing. The writers talk about that, and have owner Willis Horton on as a guest. That and more on this week's Writers' Room podcast.

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Leading the Test 'Charge'

Champion Take Charge Brandi (Giant's Causeway)--forced to miss a showdown with American Pharoah (Pioneerof the Nile) in the Mar. 14 GII Rebel S. due to a non-displaced chip in her right knee--is being aimed at a return for Saratoga's seven-furlong GI Test S. Aug. 8. "We've had her galloping for 30 days [at Churchill Downs with trainer D. Wayne Lukas] and we re X-rayed her leg [Tuesday morning] and everything looked perfect," owner Willis Horton commented. "We sent the X-rays to Dr. Bramlage--I haven't heard back from him at this...

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