Pine Bluff, winner of the 1992 Preakness Stakes (gr. I) and a multiple graded stakes winner for breeder John Ed Anthony's Loblolly Stable, has been confirmed dead by his final owner, Danny Fred Duncan of Duncan 21 and Change Farm near Trinity, Texas.
The son of Danzig was humanely euthanized in early 2014 after losing good health due to the effects of old age. He was 25 years old.
"He was going downhill, losing weight," Duncan said. "His appetite wasn't real good and we tried different feeds, but he just died of old age more than anything."
Pine Bluff's progeny brought in earnings of $33,101,422 to date. From 19 crops and 601 foals, he sired 32 black-type winners, 10 graded winners, and one champion—Chef Michelle, the top imported 3-year-old filly in Panama in 1997.
The final foals of Pine Bluff are currently racing for Duncan. He owns the stallion's last foal, the unraced 3-year-old Go Bunnee, along with her winning full brother Bout Time Again. Another son of Pine Bluff, Tuco's Revenge, is currently racing. Go Bunnee (2012), Bout Time Gain (2011), and Tuco's Revenge (2010) were the only foals produced in the final three years of Pine Bluff's stud career.
Bred in Kentucky out of the Halo mare Rowdy Angel, Pine Bluff won the Remsen Stakes (gr. II) and the Nashua (gr. II) in 1991 for trainer Thomas K. Bohannan. As a 3-year-old he won the Rebel Stakes (gr. II), and then took the Arkansas Derby (gr. I) by a neck over Lil E. Tee. That rival would go on to win the 1992 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) while Pine Bluff finished fifth, but the bay runner turned the tables when he took the Preakness by a driving length over Casual Lies. A third in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) behind A.P. Indy was the final start of his racing career; he was retired after tearing a ligament during routine training.
Finished on the track with a record of 6-1-3 from 13 starts for earnings of $2,255,884, Pine Bluff entered stud at William S. Farish's Lane's End Farm near Versailles, Ky., and stood there until he was pensioned prior to the 2007 breeding season. He later stood at Kilkerry Farm in Arkansas.
A half-brother to grade I winner Demons Begone and a full brother to the dam of Kentucky Derby winner and successful sire Fusaichi Pegasus , Pine Bluff counted among his most successful progeny grade I winner I Ain't Bluffing and grade II winners such as as millionaire Super Frolic, Bear Fan, Middlesex Drive, Megans Bluff, Puzzlement, and Lil's Lad. Duncan privately bought Pine Bluff from Anthony in 2009.
"He wasn't very fertile to begin with, and they were just looking for a good home for him, more or less," Duncan said. "The most I ever bred to him were five mares and the first time I bred him I was lucky to get three in foal to him. Two of the five had miscarriages, so I only got that one foal (Tuco's Revenge). Then the next two years I only got one foal. He hadn't been very fertile in a long time, but he was a grand-looking horse up until about six months before I had to put him down. He was an awfully good sire, too.
"I was breeding older mares to a subfertile stallion and that's (a challenging) combination, but the only way I could afford to get some really good mares was to get some older mares because their value was diminished."
Pine Bluff was buried in front of Duncan's barn.
"He came from Lane's End, the Cadillac of all farms, and I felt bad for him being at my place which is a pretty simple operation," Duncan said. "But I think he left on a good note because he just had a few mares to look at and he was always around the activities of what was going on. I train my own, so he had plenty to look at and was always paying attention."