American Lion , winner of this year’s Illinois Derby (gr. III) and the 2009 Hollywood Prevue Stakes (gr. III) has been retired from racing, it was announced Sept. 3. The 3-year-old son of Tiznow , who had not run since finishing 11th in the May 1 Kentucky Derby Presented By Yum! Brands (gr. I), carried the colors of Bill Casner and Kenny Troutt’s WinStar Farm, which bred him in partnership with Dr. William Lockridge.
“American Lion had a setback after the Derby that has prevented him from getting back to his best form and fulfilling his great potential, so we felt it was best to allow him to move on to his second career,” said Elliott Walden, WinStar’s vice president and racing manager.
Produced from the winning Storm Cat mare Storm Tide, Kentucky-bred American Lion won three of his seven career races while earning $413,600. His efforts included a third-place finish in the Robert B. Lewis Stakes (gr. II) in February.
“American Lion is a magnificent specimen with remarkable speed for such a big horse,” Eoin Harty, who trained the bay colt, said in a release. “His considerable talent was always apparent, and his potential was never fully realized. He could have easily been a Travers (gr. I) horse had he not been sidelined. His promise as a sire is equally exciting and will hopefully be fulfilled.”
Stud career plans have not been determined.