Inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 1997“He was loyal to his horses, just like he was to his people,” said trainer Blane Schvaneveldt of Ivan Ashment. “He was loyal to everything he did. If he did something, he wanted to do it good or he didn’t want to do it at all.”
Ashment’s first involvement with racing was through chariot racing. He won a record six world championship titles in the sport – some of them back when the chariots were still on runner-like sleds. One of his favorite stories was of his first chariot race that left him with broken ribs and bad memories form a barbed-wire fence.
He began flat racing in 1961, and was closely associated with Schvaneveldt. Ashment moved his breeding operation to Apple Valley, California, where a string of major stakes-winner and champion racehorses were foaled.
A few of the horses that Ashment was associated with were 1980 champion aged mare Lady Juno, 1970 champion 2-year-old filly Band Of Angels and superior racehorses Ivan’s Easy Jet, Pinball Wizard and Fleet Copy, Fleet Copy also had superiors in chariot racing.
Ashment is most remembered for breeding and campaigning Town Policy, a multiple champion racehorse that was “horsenapped” in October 1977, interrupting the gelding’s already outstanding racing career. He was recovered five months later in Mexico and – despite having lost 150 pounds – returned to the American tracks to win two more divisional championship titles for Ashment.
Ashment was owner of The Quarter Racing Record magazine and president of Quarter Racing Publishers Inc. of Fort Worth, Texas. He was a director of the Pacific Coast Quarter Horse and Pacific Coast Quarter Horse Racing associations, Intermountain Quarter Horse Association and a member of the Wyoming Quarter Horse Association. He was named Turf Writers of Northern California Horseman of the Year in 1977 and was recipient of the PCQHRA Frank Vessels Sr. Memorial Award in 1984.
Ashment died July 22, 1986. He was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 1997.