Two-time graded stakes winner and leading juvenile Kantharos suffered a career-ending leg fracture earlier this week while galloping out following a routine workout st Saratoga it was announced Aug. 31.
“This horse is a magnificent athlete," said owner Jess Jackson in a statement. “We are stunned, shocked and terribly saddened by this awful event. At the same time we are hoping that this injury will heal completely. At this point, his prognosis for a healthy recovery is good, but in any case, his racing career is over.”
Kantharos remained undefeated in three starts with an easy 7 1/4-length victory in the Saratoga Special (gr. II) on Aug. 16. Prior to that, he won the Bashford Manor (gr. III) and a maiden special weight contest, both at Churchill Downs. He won his three starts by a combined 28 1/2 lengths and until the injury he was pointing toward a fall campaign. Kantharos was also nominated to the Three Chimney's Hopeful (gr. I) at Saratoga next week.
“This was a tragic and unforeseeable event," said trainer Steve Asmussen. “The brilliance that he had shown was a foretaste of his limitless potential. Right now we are following his progress closely.”
Kantharos is the son of Lion Heart. The chestnut colt was bred in Kentucky by Hedberg Hall and out of the Southern Halo mate Contessa Halo.
Jackson said he would release updates regarding the colt’s condition and recovery in the coming months.