When Storm Flag Flying relinquished the lead in the stretch in the 2002 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies then retook it in three rapid strides, trainer Shug McGaughey commented, “I didn’t even have a chance to say ‘I’m beat’ – she was back on it that quickly.”
As remarkable as her performance was that day, it also carried considerable historical significance. Storm Flag Flying is a third generation Breeders’ Cup winner – the only Breeders’ Cup winner produced by a Breeders’ Cup winner who was produced by a Breeders’ Cup winner. Her dam, My Flag won the 1995 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies, and her granddam, Personal Ensign, won the 1988 Breeders’ Cup Distaff. The breeder of all three mares and one of the most successful breeders of all time, Ogden Phipps had died the previous April at the age 93. So when Storm Flag Flying made her determined move in the stretch and crossed the wire in front, the victory became an exclamation point on the remarkable career of Mr. Phipps.
In addition to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies, Storm Flag Flying had also won the Matron S. and Frizette S. earlier in the season. With those victories she sewed up the Eclipse Award as Champion 2-Year-Old Filly. Plagued with some problems at three, she managed only two starts that season which included a second in the Comely S. Given some time and kept in training, Storm Flag Flying came back at four and won the Shuvee H. and added an appropriate victory in the Personal Ensign, a race named to honor her granddam.
Storm Flag Flying was retired to Claiborne Farm following her racing career.