Photo: Eclipse Sportswire
It is never an easy thing to go back and count the losses of any given year, but it is a task that I have come to find is both necessary and comforting in the sense that it gives closure. In the past I have simply remembered the fallen by providing the highlights of their racing and/or breeding careers, but this year I went further than that. Because of what tragically happened to Monzante, I felt that it was important not just to remember those that we lost, but to remember why and how we lost them so that perhaps in the future some of these unnecessary losses can be prevented through diligence and responsibility.
Arouse—(Age 12) Unraced, Arouse was by Lure and out of the Quiet American mare Buena Noche. Though not well known, he was the quite the looker before he passed in October.
Arromanches—(Age 20) Best known as the sire of New York stalwart Caixa Eletronica, Arromanches was stakes placed during a career in which he won 31 of 78 starts. The son of Relaunch passed away in his paddock during the night in August.
Autism Awareness—(Age 8) Even if he had never won a race, Autism Awareness would have been a popular runner on name alone. As it stands, he was a multiple graded stakes winner before having to be humanely euthanized after suffering sesamoid injuries in a turf sprint at Santa Anita in April.
Black Rhino—(Age 4) Graded stakes placed, Black Rhino’s life was claimed by a training accident in July.
Captain Steve—(Age 16) By Fly So Free and out of the Vice Regent Mare Sparkling Delite, Captain Steve had an excellent career on the track. A winner of 9 of 25, he was a multiple graded stakes winner, and the biggest win of his career was arguably the 2001 Dubai World Cup. The chestnut stallion stood his stud career in Japan, but none of his progeny have thus far duplicated his success.
Charmed Hour—(Age 2) By the late Harlan’s Holiday, Charmed Hour won her debut by a neck. Her next and final start came in the G2 Adirondack Stakes in August. The bay filly bumped a foe at the break and then broke down near the half mile pole and was euthanized on the track.
Colonial Affair—(Age 23) A multiple Grade 1 winner, Colonial Affair was the winner of 7 of 20 career starts and earned $1,635,228. His best known victory is the 1993 Belmont Stakes in which he helped jockey Julie Krone make history by becoming the first female rider to win a Triple Crown event. As a sire, Colonial Affair was responsible for 21 stakes winners and 323 overall winners.
Dayjur—(Age 26) Crowned English Horse of the Year in 1990 as a 3-year old, Dayjur is best remembered in the United States for his memorable 1990 Breeders’ Cup Sprint. After engaging defending champion Sprinter Safely Kept, a filly, in the stretch, Dayjur looked to have the race won but inexplicably jumped a shadow nearing the wire, losing the race by a neck. As a sire, he produced 30 stakes winners and was pensioned in 2010. He was euthanized due to the infirmities of old age in September.
Dullahan—(Age 4) Half-brother to 2009 Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird, Dullahan was a three-time Grade 1 winner on synthetics. His biggest win came in the 2012 Pacific Classic when he beat older rivals, including Game On Dude, in track record time. He was euthanized in October after suffering a ruptured colon and undergoing unsuccessful colic surgery.
Fair Whit—(Age 5) By Birdstone and out of the Seattle Slew mare Slew Smarts, Fair Whit was graded stakes placed during his racing career. The gelding broke down in a race at Gulfstream in March and was subsequently euthanized due to his injuries.
Harlan’s Holiday—(14) A multiple Grade 1 winner, Harlan’s Holiday was most recently best known for being the sire of champion Shanghai Bobby. In a tragic turn of events, the stallion suddenly collapsed while returning to his still after a routine breeding session. He had lost the use of his back end due to a prolapsed intestine. Attempts to repair the prolapsed were unsuccessful, and he was euthanized. Other well known winners include young sire Into Mischief, Willcox Inn, Summer Applause, Denis of Cork, and Notacatbutallama.
Hoofit—(Age 6) Perpetually unlucky Hoofit survived a hurricane, earthquake, and shipping to the U.S. from New Zealand but was unable to overcome a leg infection. Though he won the 2011 G3 Phoenix, he never won again in 14 tries.
In Excess—(Age 26) One of the most dominant sires in California in recent years, In Excess was euthanized due to the infirmities of old age in May. During his racing career, he won 4 straight Grade 1 races (the Met Mile, Suburban, Whitney, and Woodward) and earned more than $1.7 million with 11 wins in 25 starts. As a sire, he was responsible for 56-black type winners and 16 California champions.
“Jimmy”—(Age 2) Half-brother to the legendary Black Caviar, the colt known as “Jimmy” was a record-setter himself though he had yet to race. Out of Helsinge, “Jimmy” was purchased for AUS$5 million, making him Australia’s most expensive racehorse. Following a prolonged battle with laminitis, the colt was humanely euthanized at the end of December.
Jwala—(Age 4) Group 1 Nunthorpe Stakes winner Jwala was part of the English contingent sent to Japan to contest one of the country’s biggest races. During the course of the stretch run of the Grp 1 Hong Kong Sprint, Jwala began to back pedal and then was squeezed between rivals. The filly lost her footing and fell, suffering such extensive injuries that she had to be euthanized on the track.
Klassy Briefcase—(Age 28) During her racing career, Klassy Briefcase was a record-setting sprint stakes winner. She set the course record of 56:60 for 5 furlongs on the turf at Pimlico Race Course and a course record of 56 flat for the same distance at Monmouth Park. She also set what was at the time the world record for 5 furlongs on the turf, winning an allowance at Monmouth in 54:97. As a broodmare, she produced five winners from eight starters and is the third dam of Grade 2 winner Briecat.
Live Lively—(Age 3) Never worse than third in her 5 career starts, Live Lively was the 2013 winner of the G2 Davona Dale, beating the highly regarded Dreaming of Julia. Trainer Mark Hennig had decided to skip the Kentucky Oaks and was pointing the filly to the Black-Eyed Susan, but she broke the sesamoids in her left front as she was pulling up following a routine workout and was later humanely euthanized.
Lotka—(Age 30) A multiple graded stakes winner, Lotka won 10 of her 20 career starts and earned $721,804 on the track. As a broodmare, Lotka produced nine winners from 11 starters, including graded stakes winners Lotta Dancing and Mambo Twist.
Marquetry—(Age 26) A multiple Grade 1 winner, including the 1991 Hollywood Gold Cup, Marquetry was the winner of 10 of 36 starts for earnings of $2,857,886. He sired 17 crops of foals and had a total of 519 winners, 35 of them stakes winners. He counted Sprint Eclipse winners Artax, who passed last year, and Squirtle Squirt among his biggest stars. In 2010, Marquetry was pensioned from stud duty and sent to Old Friends. It was there that he suffered an injury in his stall that led to his passing.
Mccann’s Mojave—(Age 13) Trained by Steven Specht, Mccann’s Mojave was a multiple graded stakes winner during a career that spanned 7 seasons. He retired with 12 wins from 35 starts and earnings of $1,513,565. The son of Memo had just entered stud duty in 2009 and his oldest foals turned 3 in 2013. So far he has been responsible for 13 winners. The winner of the 2007 Sunshine Millions Classic lost his life to colic in October.
Mentor Cane—(Age 3) Runner up in the 2013 edition of the G1 King’s Bishop, Mentor Cane was developing into a talented and promising sprinter before a training accident claimed his life in September.
Monzante—(Age 9) The death of the former Grade 1 winner was by far the worst story to come from the horse racing industry in 2013. After losing the edge needed to compete at racing’s top levels, the gray gelding eventually ended up being passed from one barn to another as he slid further and further down the ranks. He ended up in the barn of Jackie Thacker who entered him for a $4,000 tag at Evangeline Downs. That race would tragically be his last, but his death ended up not being in vain. Renewed interest and push to retire older runners sprang from the unhappy incident resulting in a number of other happy endings.
Nastique—(Age 29) A two time winner of the G1 Delaware Handicap, Nastique was the winner of 10 races from 42 starts. Her career spanned 5 seasons and saw her travel across the country and back again on multiple occasions. Her issue included Japanese Group 1 winner Nobo True and Grade 3 winner Thunder Kitten. After being pensioned from broodmare duty, Nastique acted as an all-around caretaker and babysitter at Brookdale Farm. She died due to the infirmities of old age.
Nehro—(Age 5) By Mineshaft, Nehro was multiple graded stakes placed, including runner-up efforts in the 2011 G1 Arkansas Derby and G1 Kentucky Derby. In 2013 Nehro raced just once, finishing 5th in a NW2X optional claimer. Nehro’s career had frequently been put on hold due to injury, and the Derby runner-up was once again attempting to make a comeback when colic claimed his life.
Nipissing—(Age 3) A winner of 5 races from 9 starts, the Niigon filly’s biggest career win came in the 2013 Woodbine Oaks. She was undefeated at age 2 and counted 2 additional stakes races among her wins. During the Wonder Where Stakes at Woodbine, she took a wrong step and was later euthanized.
Off the Jak—(Age 5) Upset winner of the 2013 Sunshine Millions Sprint, Off the Jak was the winner of 5 starts from 24 races for earnings of $286,842 for the Parbhoos. After running 4th in the G2 True North Handicap, Off the Jak broke down during the running of the G2 Smile Sprint.
Patchen Beauty—(Age 18) Though never a star on the track or as a broodmare, Patchen Beauty was the nonetheless very popular due to her rare white coloring. Her dam Precious Beauty was also a registered white, and she produced multiple white foals during her time in the breeding shed.
Points Offthebench—(Age 4) Heading into the Breeders’ Cup Sprint, Points Offthebench was one of the top picks to win the race after taking both the G1 Bing Crosby and the G1 Santa Anita Sprint Championship. Unfortunately, his run at history was not meant to be. While preparing for the big race, he broke down during a routine work. He does, however, have a shot at taking home a posthumous Eclipse Award for Champion Male Sprinter.
Rockport Harbor—(Age 11) A multiple graded stakes winner during his racing career, the son of prominent sire Unbridled’s Song went undefeated in his juvenile season, accounting for wins in the G3 Nashua and the G2 Remsen. The best of his progeny thus far did not emerge until after the stallion’s untimely death in August due to laminitis. Three months to the day later, Ria Antonia emerged as the victor of the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies after the disqualification of She’s A Tiger for interference.
Saginaw—(Age 7) Beloved by adoring fans across the country despite racing strictly on the New York circuit, Saginaw was a true rags to riches story. Claimed by Drawing Away Stable in 2012, Saginaw quickly improved from an allowance and claiming runner to a multiple stakes winner. After taking a bad step in a starter optional claiming event in which he and Caixa Eletronica shared high weight of 130 lbs, the popular gelding’s connections made the difficult decision to euthanize him rather than allow him to suffer through pain.
Secret Compass—(Age 2) The loss of Secret Compass during the running of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies put a damper on an otherwise celebratory display of the finest thoroughbreds in the world. Winner of the G1 Chandelier Stakes, Secret Compass was by Discreet Cat and out of the Maria’s Mon mare Maria’s Pride. The filly was euthanized after suffering a lateral condylar fracture during the running of the Juvenile Fillies.
Shades of Sugar—(Age 3) Winner of the Niagara Stakes at Finger Lakes, Shades of Sugar was facing older males when she suffered a fatal breakdown.
Silver Train—(Age 11) A winner of 6 races from 17 starts, talented sprinter Silver Train counted the Breeders’ Cup Sprint and the Metropolitan Handicap among his multiple graded stakes wins. The stallion was returning from his second Southern Hemisphere season in Brazil when a fatal bout of colic claimed his life. In his short career at stud, the son of Old Trieste became known for producing winners. His top progeny included Grade 3 winner J J’s Lucky Train, 2012 Preakness 4th place finisher Zetterholm, as well as champions in at least two other countries.
Storm Cat—(Age 30) Though his career on the track was brief, Storm Cat will forever be remembered throughout the industry due to his prolific career at stud. He led the general sire list twice, the broodmare sire list once, and the juvenile sire list a record seven times. He also became known as a sire of sires, responsible for the great studs Giant’s Causeway, Hennessy, Tale of the Cat, and Stormy Atlantic. His progeny collectively earned close to $130 million, and his runners included champions in multiple countries and Breeders’ Cup winners. He was euthanized due to the infirmities of old age in April at Overbrook Farm where he stood his entire career and continued to live after being pensioned.
Strait of Dover—(Age 4) Canada’s Champion 3-year old in 2012, Strait of Dover was the winner of 4 races from 7 starts, including the 2012 Queen’s Plate Stakes. The dark bay son of English Channel was humanely euthanized in July after undergoing unsuccessful colic surgery.
Sulwaan—(Age 6) A stakes placed steeplechaser, Sulwaan was one of four who did not finish the William Entenmann Memorial Stakes at Belmont in September. While the other three were simply pulled up or lost their riders after stumbling, Sulwaan was vanned off due to injury and later put down due to the extent of his injuries.
Summer Bird—(Age 7) Named the Eclipse Award winner for Champion 3-year old Colt in 2009, Summer Bird took the second half of the year by storm after having a mediocre first half. He won the Belmont, Travers, and Jockey Club Gold Cup; finished second to the great Rachel Alexandra in the Haskell, and ran a strong 4th in the Breeders’ Cup Classic behind the triumphant Zenyatta. The colt was standing at stud in Japan when a bout of colic claimed his life right before Christmas.
Take Control—(Age 6) By A.P. Indy out of Horse of the Year Azeri, Take Control was lightly raced, having started once in 2009, twice in 2012, and just once in 2013. The regally bred horse was euthanized after suffering a leg injury during a routine morning work.
Ten Most Wanted—(Age 13) Runner-up of the 2003 Belmont and winner of that year’s Travers, Ten Most Wanted passed away in Panama in January. A cause of death was not made available.
Turallure—(Age 6) Winner of over $1.3 million in purse money, Turallure’s biggest career win came in the 2011 Woodbine Mile. He followed up that win with a very close second in that year’s Breeders’ Cup Mile. The popular gray stretch runner broke down during a routine morning work and was later euthanized due to the severity of the injury.
Unbridled’s Song—(Age 20) Great both on the track and in the breeding shed, Unbridled’s Song was known both siring stakes winners and producing unsound offspring. From 14 crops to already hit the track, the gray stallion was responsible for 100 stakes winners, 45 of them graded. Like Storm Cat, he had also become known for being a sire of sires. He was euthanized in July after a large mass was discovered in multiple sinus cavities and around his optic nerves.
Verema—(Age 4) A Group 2 winner in Europe, Verema was the winner of 4 races from 13 starts for earnings of $450,238. Sent to Australia to contest the Melbourne Cup, Verema broke down during the first mile of the race and was subsequently euthanized.
Wildcat’s Smile—(Age 4) A winner of 4 races from 14 starts, Wildcat’s Smile was a stakes winner and graded stakes placed. She was competitive against the likes of In Lingerie and Disposablepleasure despite her rather obscure connections. While racing on the lead in the Cat Cay Stakes in January, the filly suffered a condylar and a sesamoid fracture and was euthanized on the track.
As always, this is far from an exhaustive list of all the beloved equine athletes we lost in 2013. They may be gone from this earth, but they will live on in the hearts and memories of those who adored them. Rest in peace, our friends.