Bloodstock Team of WinStar Farm

Darren Fox

Stallion Seasons Director

Darren, who hails from Co. Roscommon, Ireland, has been pursuing a career in the Thoroughbred industry for most of his life. He grew up on a small family farm and was around horses from a young age. He followed his passion by completing his degree in Equine Science from the University of Limerick. During his time there he completed summer work placements with Rathbarry Stud and Ballyhane Stud in Counties Cork and Carlow respectively. During his 3rd year Darren travelled to the US to work at Knockgriffin Farm in Paris, Kentucky. 

Darren pursued a Masters in Entrepreneurship also from the University of Limerick to hone his aptitude for business leading to management roles with GE Capital and Tote Ireland.  Darren then completed a 2-year managment program with Darley Flying Start. This provided exposure to every facet of the industry and its major players in Ireland, England, the US, Australia and Dubai.  Upon completion of this Darren worked as a member of the Nominations team at Darley America, a role which he occupied for 4 years until assuming his current position at WinStar.  

Kyle Wilson

Stallion Season Sales

Kyle, originally from Toledo, Ohio, was introduced to horses at an early age through his grandfather. His family would make annual trips to Lexington eventually resulting in Kyle attending the University of Kentucky. After receiving a degree in Foreign Language International Economics, Kyle was accepted to the Darley Flying Start, a two year management training course that that took him around the world to work and study with some of the industry’s brightest minds.

After Flying Start, Kyle worked for Peter Bradley at Bradley Thoroughbreds, LLC until moving into Seasons Sales at Three Chimneys Farm. For three and a half years Kyle sold seasons in the Three Chimneys stallions gaining valuable experience to help him in his current role at WinStar.

Sean Tugel

Stallion Season Sales

Originally, from Rochester, New York, Sean gained much of his early experience with horses at Finger Lakes Racetrack where he worked as a groom and in various roles at his father’s equine veterinary practice. While attending the University of Kentucky, Sean began working at Hill ‘N’ Dale Farms as a foaling attendant. After seven years and ascending to assistant division manager, Sean accepted the assistant farm manager’s role at Pauls Mill until joining WinStar in August 2011 as assistant trainer.

Leanna Packard

Marketing Coordinator

Leanna's introduction to the horse industry came about at a very young age when she started riding quarter horses for pleasure. Hailing from Wooster, Ohio, she started out as a stable hand at a local farm, which gave her a first taste of the various facets of the Thoroughbred industry. Leanna graduated from The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History in 2009. After graduation, she worked for Richland Hills in Midway, Kentucky as part of their nominations team. She was later promoted to Sales Director where she was responsible for nominations, mare bookings, stallion books, and sale contracts.

Aspiring to learn more about the international bloodstock market, Leanna spent the 2012 sales season working for Eliza Park Stud in Victoria, Australia. Leanna says, “Working a season in Australia was a real eye opener for me. I had the opportunity to work with some great people, and it has helped me bring some fresh perspective back to the U.S.”

Brian Ludwick

Bloodstock Analyst

Brian's initial introduction to horse racing was grooming Standardbreds at Blue Bonnets Raceway in his native Montreal following a chance meeting with a prominent owner who was also returning home on a flight from Miami. "After my first morning on the job I was hooked." The following year found him at Woodbine in Toronto where he groomed horses for the powerful Sam-Son Farm stable as well as for Frank Stronach. He then moved on to assistant trainer jobs with Tony Mattine and later Mike Doyle at Payson Park in Florida. The latter landed him here in Lexington where he has resided ever since. "I was very fortunate to have worked around some wonderful horses like Awesome Again, Classy 'N Smart (herself a Canadian champion and dam of champion Dance Smartly), Dauphin Fabuleux (Canadian Horse of the Year) and Richter Scale." 

Between his many years of hands on experience and attending the races every opportunity he had, Brian has gained a good understanding of the game which he hopes to apply here at WinStar. "I've seen more races and read more Racing Forms than I care to admit, but I wouldn't trade that experience for anything."

Amy Nave

Executive Assistant to President, Elliott Walden

Growing up in Kentucky, Amy had a lifelong love of horses and the Thoroughbred Racing industry, so she was thrilled with the chance to join WinStar as a Bloodstock Assistant and the opportunity it presents to continue to learn about thoroughbred breeding and racing operations. “I am glad to be part of the WinStar team – it feels like a family.”

Amy is a graduate of Centre College and started her career in the Thoroughbred industry in the accounting and equine insurance divisions of Hopewell Farm.

Amy lives in Versailles with her husband, Bill, and their children.

Giulia Mattarello

Bloodstock Assistant

Originally from Padua, Italy, Giulia was somehow born with the horse virus to a family that, until that point, had not known a horse's head from its tail. She started riding horses at a very young age, and always dreamed that one day she could be a part of the equine industry.

Given the limitations of the horse business in Italy, she almost gave up on her dream and instead went on to graduate from Padua University and then to complete her Master's Degree in Communication, Cinema and Multimedia Production at IULM University, Milan, Italy in 2007.

Much to her parents' chagrin, that was the last sensible thing she did. After graduating, Giulia completed an Equine Manager Certification and she embarked on a series of adventures that took her all over the United States, from Walt Disney World to the open ranges of Wyoming, until she finally managed to make Lexington, Kentucky her home in November 2011.

Giulia joined the WinStar team in May 2012, and worked with both Broodmare and Yearling divisions before she moved to the Office in April 2013. She feels blessed for all the opportunities she has been given, and looks forward to what else the future will bring.”

Rebecca Grabert

Photographer/Client Website Administrator

Originally from Indiana, Rebecca graduated from Midway College with a degree in Equine Business. During her time at Midway she worked for Legacy Bloodstock, gaining valuable experience in sales, pedigree research, and bloodstock analysis. She completed the Irish National Stud breeding course in 2012, afterword traveling to Australia to gain further international experience in the thoroughbred industry. Rebecca worked at Eliza Park International, and participated in the major Australian yearling sales. Returning to the U.S. in 2013, Rebecca first joined WinStar team in the broodmare division in March. Since then she has worked with the yearling crew and at the breaking and training center, and now joins the bloodstock division in addition to continuing her work with yearlings.