06/21/2013 2:12PM

Ricker, Kentucky breeder and owner, dies at 59


Central Kentucky breeder and owner Scott Ricker died of cancer on June 20. He was 59.

A native of St. Charles, Ill. Ricker and his wife, Carol, owned Sunny Oak Farm near Paris, Ky., which they founded in 1979. Ricker entered the Thoroughbred industry through his father-in-law, Dr. William Harris, a horse owner for over four decades.

Countess Diana, 1997’s champion juvenile filly, was the most accomplished runner raised at Sunny Oak Farm. The Deerhound filly, bred and co-owned by Richard Kaster, captured the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies in 1997 to end an Eclipse Award-winning campaign that also included wins in the Grade 1 Spinaway and the Grade 2 Alcibiades and Schuylerville. Countess Diana also set a track record at Pimlico for 4 1/2 furlongs in her debut start.

Ricker was a frequent business partner with Kaster, co-breeding stakes winner Lost Aptitude and racing Dyna Whirl, winner of the 1996 Appalachian at Keeneland, in partnership. The latter was bred by Ricker’s father-in-law.

Ricker was a member of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association, the Kentucky Farm Managers Club, Keeneland Association, and the Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund.

Ricker is survived by his wife; sons Marc and Jon; sister Laurie Vincent, and brothers Randall, David, Kent, and Jeff.

Funeral services will be held Monday, June 24, at the Hilton-Turner Funeral Home in Paris at 11 a.m. Eastern. Visitation will be Sunday, June 23, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Memorials are suggested to the Leesburg Christian Church in Cynthiana, Ky., or to the American Cancer Society.