Kevin Plank, the Maryland-born founder and CEO of Under Armour, must be feeling pretty good right now. His company's golden child, Stephen Curry, was just named the NBA's first unanimous MVP, and the guard's signature sneaker, the "Curry Two," is selling more than any Nike model on the market. But beyond the world of clothing brands and basketball shoes, Plank now has his eye on an entirely different market: whiskey.
The Baltimore Sun reported Tuesday that Plank's new rye whiskey label, Sagamore Spirit, is making its world debut at the Preakness Stakes, the annual horse race in Baltimore on May 21.
Though more that 50 bars and liquor stores in Baltimore already have Sagamore Spirit stocked on their shelves—and the company recently purchased a 17-acre property near Sparrows Point for $2.5 million—having the brand's official rollout coincide with Preakness, a Maryland institution since 1873, made perfect sense.
“We were also committed to launching when we were ready,” Bill McDermond, Sagamore's co-founder, told the Sun. “The fact that we were able to line it up with Preakness is, really for us, an extraordinary added bonus, certainly when it’s attached to the Sagamore name.”
“We had opportunities to launch earlier,” he added. “We were thoughtful about this.”
A number of whiskey options will be available at Preakness, but if you're looking specifically for rye, then you'll be sipping on Sagamore. The company has signed on as the exclusive rye provider of the race, and bartenders will be serving up cocktails like the Maryland Mule and the Whiskey Crush at Turfside Terrace’s Sagamore Rye Bar all weekend.
The good news is no matter how much money you lose betting on the Triple Crown, at least there will be plenty of liquor on hand to numb the pain.
[via Baltimore Sun]