Renowned thoroughbred consultant Jack Werk has died in California after a long battle with cancer. He was 65.
Werk founded Werk Thoroughbred Consultants in the late 1980s and developed it into a leading pedigree consulting company. Among his many innovations was the popular Werk Nick Rating, which determines the success of different crosses using a grading system, and in 2004, the online mating assistance facility eNicks.com.
“Jack really developed the first commercial nicking service,” bloodstock commentator Sid Fernando said. “He was able to incorporate technology into the horse racing business and was a little bit ahead of everyone else. He had eNicks as a concept before most people knew what e-commerce was. His products started to get copied quite a bit. He was a real innovator.”
Werk also founded the monthly pedigree journal Owner-Breeder in 1987 alongside Daily Racing Form columnist Leon Rasmussen and in 1992 he launched CompuSire.
When advisor to the late Eduardo Gaviria, Werk recommended the mating that produced 1997 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner Real Quiet.