Brian Grassick with his wife Sheila at the 2008 ITBA awardsPICTURE: Caroline Norris
Brian Grassick dies
BLOODSTOCK agent Brian Grassick, aged 54, died on Wednesday. He had been seriously ill with cancer in recent months.
After working for BBA (Ireland) for 17 years, Grassick and his wife, Sheila, set up Brian Grassick Bloodstock in 1991. Based at Newtown House Stud near Naas in County Kildare, he was a well-known figure on the international bloodstock sales circuit.
He bought numerous top-class horses including the Group 1 winners Bachir, San Sebastian and Dimitrova while healso purchased the dams of many group winners including Millenary, Preseli and Ransom O'War, as well as Lady Ambassador, dam of the 1998 Prix Vermeille winner and Arc second, Leggera.
He also advised Lazy T Farm, breeder of the 2005 Great Voltigeur Stakes winner Centennial, as well as David Tsui of Sunderland Holdings, owner of the Arc winner and legendary mare Urban Sea who boarded at Grassick's stud. She is dam of the champion racehorse and sire Galileo, Group 1 winner Black Sam Bellamy, Oaks runner-up All Too Beautiful, US Grade 1 winner My Typhoon and last summer's Group 2 Beresford Stakes winner Sea The Stars.
Brian Grassick Bloodstock also bred Fly For Avie, winner of the Grade 1 E P Taylor Stakes at Woodbine in 2000.
A son of former jockey and trainer Christy Grassick and his wife, Alice, Grassick rode as an amateur but gave up, as he explained in an interview in 2001, when a "lack of ability and hunger made me look for a job with prospects".
He was one of five brothers, all of whom are involved in the bloodstock industry - Michael is a trainer on The Curragh, Christy is manager of Coolmore Stud, Ronan runs a bloodstock transport business, while Martin is manager of Childwick Bury Stud in St Albans Hertfordshire.
Brian was a director of Goffs and yesterday the firm's chief executive Henry Beeby said: "Brian's advice, given his huge experience of the bloodstock industry, was absolutely invaluable to Goffs in recent years."
Goffs chairman Eimear Mulhern, speaking as a friend and colleague, said: "Brian was a consummate professional who built his reputation on his absolute integrity. He was a very talented man and one with a very clear vision of life. He built a very successful business based on all those qualities he possessed.
"He was also a totally committed family man with clear values and was as straight and honest aperson as one could wish to meet. We will all miss him hugely."
Grassick is survived by his wife, Sheila, daughters Cathy, who works for the family agency, and Sally Ann and son, Mark.
His funeral will take will take place on Saturday in Twomilehouse, County Kildare following 12pm mass.