Jess Jackson, Kendall-Jackson founder and thoroughbred owner, dies at 81
Jess Jackson, the founder of the Kendall-Jackson winery and a prominent thoroughbred owner, died of cancer Thursday at his home in Geyserville, Calif. He was 81.
Caroline Shaw, a spokeswoman for Jackson Family Wines, confirmed Jackson's death.
In recent years, Jackson was one of horse racing's leading owners. He campaigned two-time horse of the year Curlin, and then purchased a majority interest in Rachel Alexandra, the sensational filly who was horse of the year in 2009.
As a California vintner, Jackson built a multimillion-dollar empire on chardonnay with his popular Kendall-Jackson brand before moving into the racehorse business with his Stonestreet Stable.
A letter on his company's website ended by asking friends to "take a moment this week to lift a glass and join us in a toast to our friend and founder Jess Jackson."
More later at latimes.com/obits
-- Associated Press
Photo: Jess Jackson in 2005. Credit: Los Angeles Times