Updated on 09/16/2011 7:13AM

Ogden Phipps dead at 93


Ogden Phipps, the heir and patriarch of one of the country's leading racing and breeding families, died early Monday morning at a hospital in West Palm Beach, Florida, after a short illness. Phipps was 93.

Phipps, who was introduced to racing through his mother, Mrs. Henry Carnegie Phipps, and passed on his love for the sport to his children, campaigned nine champions, including 1966 Horse of the Year Buckpasser and 1988 champion juvenile colt Easy Goer. Phipps called Easy Goer's win in the 1989 Belmont Stakes his greatest thrill in racing, coming in his native New York, where he won the vast majority of his stakes races.

Other champions included Heavenly Prize, Impressive, Numbered Account, the undefeated Personal Ensign, Queen of the Stage, Relaxing, and Vitriolic. Twenty-six horses campaigned by Phipps won Grade 1 stakes in New York. His distinctive silks were simply black, topped with a cherry-colored cap.

Over the decades since Phipps became involved in the sport, the Phipps name has been synomyous with outstanding mares, both on the racetrack and in the breeding shed. Phipps has long stabled his mares at Claiborne Farm in Kentucky.

The former chairman of Bessemer Trust Company, a private investment firm, Phipps was the chairman of the Jockey Club from 1964-1974 and a trustee emeritus of the New York Racing Association.

Phipps's son, Ogden Mills "Dinny" Phipps, has followed closely in his father's footsteps, and has campaigned two champions. Dinny Phipps has also been heavily involved on the organizational side of racing, serving as chairman of the New York Racing Association from 1976-1983 and serving as the current chairman of the Jockey Club. A daughter, Cynthia Phipps, also campaigns a stable in New York.

Away from the racetrack and Bessemer, Phipps was the retired Commander of Naval Reserves, and he was the National Court Tennis Champion in 1934, 1937, 1948 and 1949.