Far Flung: Where are Yesterday's Heroes Today?
Updated: Wednesday, November 28, 2001 8:51 AM
Posted: Tuesday, November 27, 2001 2:40 PM
Multiple U.S. champion Paseana has returned to her native Argentina.
Although the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships were created in the United States, the event was never meant to appeal exclusively to racing enthusiasts in the U.S. As the impact of the day's races have expanded beyond the borders of North America, so have horses who made history with their wins on Breeders' Cup day.
Some of those horses were born and bred in the U.S., but now live elsewhere. Some were foaled in one country, raced in another, and now live somewhere completely different. Here are some of their stories.Paseana
was bred in Argentina and began her racing career in that country. After five wins in eight starts, she came to the United States to race for Sid Craig and trainer Ron McAnally.
Paseana raced through age eight, won 14 of her 28 starts in the U.S., and earned honors as the champion older mare in this country in 1992 and 1993. In 1992 she also won the Breeders' Cup Distaff. Earlier this year she was inducted into Racing's Hall of Fame.
After two years of unsuccessful attempts to get Paseana in foal, the mare was sent to reproductive specialist Dr. Ignacious Pavlosky in Argentina in 1998. In September of 2000 she produced her first foal, a filly by Lode.
In the spring of 2001 Sid Craig decided to bring Paseana back to the United States. "We decided to try and get her (here) in this breeding season," Craig said. "(In Argentina) they gave her some female hormones, and felt they could do the same thing here. She has been in heat but has been difficult to get her to ovulate."
Paseana was boarded at William S. Farish's Lane's End Farm near Versailles, Ky., and was booked to Skip Away. However, the mare never ovulated, and therefore, was not bred. Mike Cline, farm manager at Lane's End, said Paseana never cycled normally, so she was not bred. Cline said he hoped late-spring weather would cause her reproductive system to adjust and normalize. Unfortunately, Kentucky was unseasonably cool this spring.
In August Craig announced he was sending Paseana back to Argentina. She is again with Pavlosky at his farm near Buenos Aires. Plans were to breed her to Lode or Southern Halo this fall. As for her only offspring, now named Paseana's Girl, Craig said plans were to put her into training in Argentina, but hopefully she would eventually be brought to the United States.
racing career, he became America's favorite horse. The son of Alydar was bred in Kentucky by Preston Madden and was owned by Texans Dorothy and Pamela Scharbauer. He won the Kentucky Derby (gr. I)and Preakness Stakes (gr. I) as a 3-year-old, then finished second to Kentucky Derby winner Ferdinand in the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I). The race still ranks among the top moments in Breeders' Cup history.
The following year Alysheba was nearly unstoppable. The big bay won six of his eight starts, then went out on a high note with a 1 1/2-length win over Seeking the Gold in the 1988 Breeders' Cup Classic at Churchill Downs.
Alysheba retired to the heart of the Bluegrass, Lane's End Farm. In the spring of 2000, with only 17 stakes winners in 10 crops, Alysheba was sold to His Royal Highness Crown Prince Adullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia.
Now it is like starting over for Alysheba. There are high hopes for the Prince's growing breeding operation, based at Janadriyah Stud Farm outside Riyadh, and high hopes for Alysheba as a sire. Even though Alysheba arrived in the midst of the 2000 breeding season, he covered 30 mares. In 2001 he covered 20 mares.
Alysheba lives in a large stall, measuring about 20x20 feet, has his own desert cooler (a necessity in heat that can reach 125 degrees Fahrenheit), and a sand paddock. Another Breeders' Cup champion, 1985 Juvenile (gr. I) winner Tasso
, is also at the farm. The whole operation is growing, both in size and stature. Manager David Fitch-Peyton said about six years ago the Prince purchased a group of mares from Europe. Their foals are now of racing age, and some of them are now going to Alysheba and Tasso.
"The improvements that have been made over that time have really taken off in the past 10 years," said Fitch-Peyton. "There has been lots of development nearby. It's a beautiful setup. We have two big American barns, a state of the art equine hospital, private pre-training barn, and a private training track for all the 2-year-olds. It's easily 2,000 acres."
Another advantage for Alysheba is the fact Saudi Arabia racing focuses less on speed at age two than North American racing. Horses in that country often race past age six. Since he hit what was perhaps his best stride at four, maybe his Saudi Arabian offspring will do the same.
Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) champion and 1993 Horse of the Year Kotashaan
has also been doing some traveling. The French-bred son of Darshaan competed in France, Japan, and the U.S. Then he began his stud career in Japan. He left that country in January of 2000 for a new career in Ireland.
Now Andrew (Willy) Murphy is proud to own Kotashaan. He purchased the horse privately and brought him from Japan to his Ballycurragh Stud in County Carlow, Ireland. Murphy is hoping to breeding National Hunt Champions by the stallion. During the 2001 season he sent 100 mares to the stallion.
Kotashaan's first Irish foals hit the ground this spring. Murphy couldn't have been happier with them.
"They're brilliant," he said. "I have 10 or 12 of them. They're outdoors constantly...and just look brilliant."
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