First Dude , fresh off a score in the Hollywood Gold Cup Handicap (gr. I) July 9, has been retired from racing. A homebred for Donald R. Dizney, the 4-year-old Stephen Got Even colt came out of the Gold Cup with a strained tendon.
“It probably has some tearing to it too,” said Roger Brand, vice president and general manager of Dizney’s Double Diamond Farm near Ocala, Fla. “Dr. (Larry) Bramlage also has taken a look at the injury.”
Estimates are that First Dude wouldn’t be fully recovered until next year.
First Dude rode a two-race win streak into the Gold Cup. He won an allowance race at Santa Anita in April, and then captured the Alysheba Stakes (gr. III) at Churchill Downs May 6. In the Gold Cup, he defeated Game On Dude, also trained by Baffert, with Twirling Candy finishing third.
First Dude placed in five grade I stakes last year. Trained at the time by Dale Romans, First Dude finished second in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) and third in the Belmont Stakes, Travers Stakes, IZOD Haskell Invitational Stakes, and the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, all grade I.
During his career First Dude won or placed in 13 of 17 races and earned $1,442,140.
Florida-bred First Dude is out of the stakes-placed Smart Strike mare Run Sarah Run and is a half brother to stakes winner Via Veneto.