New York-based stakes winner Bellacourt, who finished third to eventual champion 2-year-old filly My Miss Aurelia in last year’s Adirondack Stakes (gr. II) at Saratoga, was euthanized in mid-December due to complications from laminitis.
According to trainer James Lawrence, Bellacourt had been working toward a start in the Nov. 19 Delta Downs Princess Stakes (gr. III) when she fractured her left front sesamoid at Fair Hill Training Center in Maryland.
“We were breezing five eighths of a mile and in the last eighth when she switched leads, she just took a bad step and broke her sesamoid,” said Lawrence of the filly, who was owned by North Carolina-based attorneys George and Stephanie Autry.
Bellacourt underwent a series of surgeries under the care of veterinarian Dean Richardson at New Bolton Center in West Chester, Pa., to repair the original injury, as well as other subsequent ailments, such as a tissue infection, colic, and a collapsed pastern.
Following the fourth surgery, Bellacourt had shown signs of improvement, but then developed a serious case of laminitis.
“She was doing really well, and then all of a sudden she took a turn for the worst, and we elected not to put her through any more pain,” said Lawrence. “It’s a real shame because she was such a talented filly. I think she was going to be very tough in New York company this year and also in open graded stakes.”
Added George Autry, who started in the industry about seven years ago: “She took us to a place we haven’t been before, so she will always be special for that reason.”
Bellacourt, a daughter of Lion Heart—Gold Court, by Strike the Gold, won two of her five career starts, including the Oct. 22 restricted Joseph A. Gimma Stakes at Belmont Park. Bred in New York by Cheryl Prudhomme and Dr. Michael Gallivan, she had earnings of $101,550.