22 May 2017

Two On-Track Investments

Alumni-owned horses win first legs of racing’s Triple Crown
Re: Bob Clay (OPM 4)


Photo via the Baltimore Sun

There are no sure bets in Thoroughbred racing—but for many, the thrill of watching a horse thundering down the track far outweighs the risk of loss, whether the stake is a $2 bet or a $200,000 investment in a promising young colt. That’s about how much Seth Klarman (MBA 1982) and a co-owner paid for Cloud Computing, winner of the Preakness Stakes on May 20. A 13-1 prerace underdog, Cloud Computing paid $28.20 to win and earned his owners a $900,000 paycheck. Cloud Computing wasn’t an obvious winner, however: “His breeding isn't the top sire, he's a relatively inexperienced sire,” Klarman told the Baltimore Sun. “When the trainer loved him at the sale physically and he vetted clean, we made the decision to buy him.”

Many noted that Cloud Computing came to the Preakness fresh, having skipped the Kentucky Derby two weeks earlier. That race—often referred to as “the most exciting two minutes in sports”—was won by Always Dreaming, the favorite at the Preakness. Terry Finley (OPM 45, 2014) owns 25 percent of that horse, purchased for $1.25 million. As president and CEO of New York–based West Point Thoroughbreds, Finley is the business of creating and managing “equine portfolios,” making Thoroughbred ownership a reality for anyone with the will (and the wallet) to get in the game. “I’m probably the only owner that bought his first horse on credit cards,” Finley told WPVI, Philadelphia’s ABC affiliate. “It chokes you up,” he said, describing the feeling of winning the Derby. “It’s an emotional surge that is indescribable.”

Read more:

6abc.com: "Owner of Kentucky Derby winner is a native of Bucks County"

Baltimore Sun: "After attending race growing up, Baltimore-raised owner Seth Klarman soaking in Preakness victory"

And, from the Bulletin archives, a feature on Bob Clay (OPM 4, 1980), CEO of Three Chimneys Farm, a Thoroughbred breeding farm in the heart of Kentucky’s bluegrass country.

Featured Alumni

Featured Alumni

Class of MBA 1982, Section I
Class of OPM 45

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