Darley stallion Songster will be taken out of stud duty and put back into training due to undetermined fertility issues.
"It's obviously an unfortunate situation, but one that happens occasionally in our business,” said Charlie Boden, Darley’s stallion nominations manager. “Our goal now is to take care of the breeders that committed to Songster the best we can. After that, we look forward to seeing him perform once again on the track."
Songster, a New York graded stakes-winning sprinter in 2006 and 2007, was retired from racing last August because of a soft tissue injury. He entered stud duty in 2008, for a fee of $10,000.
“He is being shipped to Keeneland to our barn with (trainer) Johnny Burke,” said Boden. “We are confident that he’s over his injury, and he’s had the needed rest, so we’ll keep our fingers crossed that he’ll become a star on another front. We’ll see how well he gets fit and ready, and a decision will be made on who will train him.”
None of the approximate 60 mares Songster covered are in foal.
“It was an undiagnosed problem,” Boden explained. “There was no reason to think he wouldn’t get mares in foal, but he didn’t."
The 5-year-old son of Songandaprayer raced first for Darley and then for Godolphin, and was first or second in seven of eight races, including the 2006 Woody Stephens Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. II) at Belmont Park and Hirsch Jacobs Stakes (gr. III) at Pimlico, and the 2007 Bold Ruler Handicap (gr. III) at Belmont Park.
Also finishing second in the Amsterdam (gr. II) and Bay Shore (gr. III) Stakes, Songster entered stud with earnings of $367,740. He was trained first by Tom Albertrani and later by Saeed bin Suroor.
Bred by Richard Giacopelli, Songster is the first foal from the French Deputy mare Peppy Lapeau and is from the female family of successful sire Slewpy.