Par Four Racing Stable, whose 12 horses include the incredible Weather Vane, was honored as the top owner at the 12th annual Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association Christmas party and awards ceremony last night at Laurel Park.
Ben Feliciano received the award as the state's outstanding trainer, and three backstretch workers were also honored: Benjamin F. Stubbs Jr., Eddy Escober and George Deener.
Par Four has been together since 1995. Its threesome is Pete Dillon, a 7-handicap golfer who works for the National Security Agency, his son-in-law Bill Delp and Bill's brother Gary.
"We got into this hoping we could pay the bills, have some fun and go to the racetrack to watch our horses run," Dillon said. "We just got lucky with Weather Vane."
Bill Delp, son of trainer Dick Delp, had purchased the mare But In Vain for $1,000. He bred her to Willard Scott when his fee was a paltry $750. On April 17, 1994, the mating produced Weather Vane.
Of her 35 races, she has won 16. Thirteen have been stakes, including the Miss Preakness and Safely Kept last year, and the Maryland Million Distaff this year. Weather Vane has earned $692,253.
Now, the partners of Par Four are considering selling her as a broodmare. They came to that conclusion reluctantly.
"In our lifetime we'll never have another horse like Weather Vane," Dillon said.
Pub Date: 12/01/98