An earner of just over $1 million during a 47-race career, Cost of Freedom hit the apex of his career with trainer John Sadler when he won the Ancient Title Stakes (gr. I) in 2008 and later finished third, beaten by just a head, in the 2009 Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I). He was claimed away from Sadler for $32,000 in September 2011.
The gelded son of Cee's Tizzy was thought to be headed to Turf Paradise in Arizona following his recent claim by trainer Robertino Diodoro out of the Hollywood race in which he finished 10th of 11 as the 17-10 favorite.
"I claimed him, and I was going to continue to race him," Diodoro said. "Everyone assumed I was taking the horse to Phoenix. That wasn't the plan, although if some of my horses can't succeed in California, I do run them at Turf Paradise.
"Some people criticize Phoenix, but I've had horses coming out of California that were done racing and they retire, go out to pasture, or go to Canada to be a chuckwagon horse. But running in Phoenix, some are reinvigorated, because it's easier company. You don't have to train as hard there.
"Anyway, after I claimed Cost of Freedom, my phone started ringing. I'm not on Facebook, but I started hearing a lot of stuff, and (Santa Anita head clocker) John Malone got a hold of me and wanted to put something together for Cost of Freedom's retirement. He stepped up and purchased the horse."
Malone said Cost of Freedom, who he paid $8,650 for, including taxes, is expected to arrive at his five-acre facility in Winchester, near Temecula, Dec. 30.
"I'm happy to do what's right for the horse, as who all involved are," Malone said. "It's the least we can do."
"I just met John on Friday," Diodoro continued. "He's a super guy and deserves all the credit. Hats off to John. He's been a class act, and it's all about the horse."
Sadler contributed $2,000 to help for Cost of Freedom's retirement. "He was really a nice horse," Sadler said. "I'm happy to contribute."
Bred in California by John Harris out of the Moscow Ballet mare Freedom Dance, Cost of Freedom won 16 races, was second in 10, and third in seven others. He earned $1,018,799.