Son of Nancy Alberts will continue to operate late mother's racing stable

Will Alberts to keep horses, has hired trainer

May 11, 2011|By Sandra McKee, The Baltimore Sun

As Will Alberts remembered how much his mother, Nancy, loved her horses, dogs and cats, he demonstrated how much he loved her. Addressing the large crowd that had gathered in the Laurel Park clubhouse to celebrate the late trainer's life Alberts said he will "continue her business in Maryland" and asked for help from local horsemen.

Nancy Alberts, who died last week at 65 after suffering a stroke, rose to fame by training long shot Magic Weisner to a runner-up finish in the 2002 Preakness. She was remembered Wednesday as a strong woman who liked things done her way but also as a warm-hearted friend.

"She wanted things right," said her sister, Shirley Hickman, one of many to imitate Nancy Alberts' gruff voice. "But she was the one who gave our family something to look forward to."

Photos of Alberts with her horses were placed around the room, and a slideshow of her happy moments ran nonstop on all the televisions. At one point, a replay of Magic Weisner's last-to-second run in the Preakness was shown, and guests learned the horse is still alive and enjoying life in the pasture.

After the remembrances of family and friends, Will Alberts said he has hired Marcus Assia, who worked in his mother's stable, to train the horses and several other people to keep the operation going.

"I'm keeping everything," Alberts said of his mother's farm and stable of five horses in training, a 2-week-old foal and a yearling that is about to go into training. "Horses were never my thing, but I'm dedicated to carrying on my mother's legacy."

Alberts, who lives in Laurel — just beyond the barns on the backstretch — and works in information technology, was asked whether his mom would be surprised by his decision.

"When she was 60, about five years ago, I held a surprise birthday party for her," he said. "When the door opened and everyone said, 'Surprise!' she turned to me and said, 'Don't do this again.' I don't know if you mean that kind of surprise. But I hope she would be proud. She loved the horse racing business her whole life."

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