Popular New Jersey stallion Unbridled Jet died July 7 when he was struck by lightning at Kurt Sleeter’s Sleeter Farm near Clementon, N.J. The 15-year-old son of Unbridled had stood at the farm since 2007.
Unbridled Jet, who began his stallion career in 2001 at the Pons family’s Country Life Farm in Maryland, sired eight stakes winners and the earners of more than $7.2 million. His leading earner, Jet Away Jane, earned $543,937. Unbridled Jet ranks third on New Jersey’s leading sires’ list by 2011 progeny earnings.
Racing for Double H Stable, Unbridled Jet ran second in both the Pegasus Handicap (gr. II) at Meadowlands and the Long Branch Breeders’ Cup Stakes at Monmouth Park. In Monmouth’s premier race, the Haskell Invitational Handicap (gr. I), Unbridled Jet finished fourth behind Menifee, Cat Thief, and Forestry when beaten 1 1/2 lengths in the 1999 running. During his racing career Unbridled Jet finished first or second in five of 13 starts and earned $255,364.
Unbridled Jet impregnated all 20 of the mares he was bred to this year. The last mare that was pronounced in foal was found to be pregnant the morning of Unbridled Jet’s death.
Bred in Kentucky by Harold Harrison, Unbridled Jet was one of three stakes-placed runners out of the Easy Goer mare Easy Summer, whose dam, Summer Mood, was a Canadian champion.
Unbridled Jet is buried at the farm.
Unbridled Jet’s place on the Sleeter Farm stallion roster will be taken by stakes winner King Puma, who is expected to arrive at the farm in August.
King Puma, who sold for $375,000 at the 2008 Ocala Breeders’ Sale Co.’s February 2-year-old sale, raced for George and Lori Hall, who won this year’s Belmont Stakes (gr. I) with Ruler On Ice. Kurt Sleeter acquired King Puma privately.
King Puma won both of his starts at 2, including the Fitz Dixon Jr. Memorial Juvenile Stakes at Presque Isle Downs. At 3 he ran second in both the Hansel Stakes and the Darley Ocala Breeders’ Sale Sprint Stakes. He made five starts and earned $107,900.
Bred in Kentucky by Stoneway Farm, King Puma is by Forest Wildcat out of the winning Gilded Time mare Added Time and is a half brother to grade I winner Irish Smoke.
“We’ve done research and found that he nicks well with our mares,” Sleeter said.
King Puma’s fee will be announced later.