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Profile of Buffett’s Horseracing Venture

February 8th, 2012

Liz O’Connell at the Huffington Post has a great article on Last Mango Racing, the horseracing partnership consisting of Jimmy Buffett and members of the New Orleans Saints organization.

Who Dat Ambush is owned by a subset of Last Mango partners together with some outside owners. Currently, Last Mango Racing is running FleurDeFortyFour, from Any Given Saturday’s first full crop, who finished second in a Fair Grounds maiden special weight this weekend in his third start. Franderella, a Henny Hughes three year old filly is on layup.

The Fair Grounds winner’s circle in 2012 is a long way from the deck of Jimmy Buffet’s boat the Last Mango II where in 2007, New Orlean’s Saints’ coach Sean Payton, the Saints’ director of communications Greg Bensel and Buffet were chilling. It was Super Bowl weekend in Miami, FL. The Indianapolis Colts were getting ready to win 29 to 17 over the Chicago Bears and Coach Payton was in town to receive NFL Coach of the Year honors.

While on that boat ride, the three friends talked football — Coach Payton encouraged Buffet to design a play that he would call at the Pro Bowl the following weekend. Buffet came up with a half-back pass that he called “the Last Mango” and Saints quarterback Drew Brees and Giants Running back Tiki Barber were designated to run the play. They did, the pass was intercepted, but that’s another story.

That afternoon the friends also talked about New Orleans’ recovery post-Hurricane Katrina. Buffet specifically asked about how the Fair Grounds Race Course (FG) was doing in its comeback. “I offered that we organize a small group of guys and each throw in $1000 a man and go get a hard-knocking claimer and run it in the fall meet at FG, our way of doing something we are all interested in. And what better place than the Fair Grounds, where we all have a connection,” explains Greg Bensel.

Be sure to read the full article here.

Buffett hit the track last month in New Orleans while in town for a Saints game. Read more.

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