Lael Stable and All In Stable
Lael Stable is the stable name for Roy and Gretchen Jackson. All In Stable is the non de plume for owners Marette Farrell, a bloodstock advisor who helped pick out Secretariat Stakes contender Willcox Inn; and longtime friends Marty Nixon, Ron Lepinski & Al Lepinski who also operate as the Three Kings Stable.
The Jacksons both graduated from the University of Pennsylvania. Gretchen Jackson (class of '59) also earned a master's degree in pastoral counseling from Neumann College. Roy (class of '61) was a three-sport star athlete whose UPenn career was cut short after his sophomore year because of a heart condition. His surgery and subsequent recovery delayed his graduation by two years
Roy Jackson has spent much of his life envolved in the game of baseball, serving from 1983-2000 as president of Convest, Inc., a firm that represented professional ballplayers. He also served as past president of minor league baseball leagues such as the International League (AAA), Pacific Coast League (AAA) and Eastern League (AA). As a club owner, he formerly owned minor league teams in York, Pa. (Pirates) and Tucson, Ariz. (Toros)
Gretchen actively is involved in several organizations, including the University of Pennsylvania's New Bolton Center, where she has been on the board of overseers since 2002 – long before the placement of their ill-fated Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro in the Center's care. She also is on the board of directors of Thoroughbred Charities of America and Anna House, a day care center based at Belmont Park for children of backstretch employees.
Mr. Jackson's father, Roy Sr., who passed away when Roy was eight, was involved with horses and was a renowned breeder of foxhounds. Later, his mother and stepfather owned racehorses. Gretchen was involved with hunters and show horses prior to their first foray into Thoroughbred racing. The Jacksons have been involved in Thoroughbred racing for approximately 30 years. Roy Jackson began devoting his full attention to racing as a principal business in 2000
Lael Stables ascended to the pinnacle of American racing in 2006 with Kentucky Derby and Florida Derby winner Barbaro, only the sixth unbeaten horse ever to wear the roses. Not only was Barbaro the stable's first Derby starter, but he joined stablemate Showing Up in the gate in Louisville. It marked the first time that two previously undefeated horses represented the same owner in the Kentucky Derby. Sent off as an odds-on favorite in the Preakness, Barbaro had taken just a few strides out of the gate when he fractured his right hind leg in three places. Following the injury, Barbaro underwent nearly two dozen surgeries and procedures to repair the ankle. Though there was a massive outpouring of emotional support for him, Barbaro's gallant fight for life came to an end in late Jan. 2007 when laminitis set in and he was euthanized.