Degenerate Gal, a grade II winner and a graded stakes producer, was euthanized Oct. 1 because of complications from old age. The 27-year-old daughter of Degenerate Jon resided at Carolyn McDonald’s Hidden Springs Farm near Versailles, Ky.
Degenerate Gal, who raced as a homebred for McDonald’s husband, the late Ronald W. McDonald, was a stakes winner all four years she raced and a graded winner in three of those years. Her biggest win came in a pacesetting effort in the 1991 Apple Blossom Handicap (gr. II) over grade I winner Charon, with champion Bayakoa also in the beaten field.
"She was always good minded and had controllable speed," said Carolyn’s son, Mark, who is Hidden Springs’ farm manager. "She could race on the front and come from off it. She had an explosive turn of foot."
Degenerate Gal, who is out of the Mr. Clinch mare Secret Voice, helped the McDonalds get established in racing. "At that time, we had two horses," Mark McDonald said.
Degenerate Gal raced primarily in Kentucky and in the Midwest. She won the Falls City Handicap (gr. III) at Churchill Downs and the Arlington Matron Handicap (gr. III). She won four stakes races at Turfway Park. Sent east on occasion, she took the Lorillard Stakes at Monmouth Park and ran third in the Shuvee Handicap (gr. I) at Belmont Park.
Degenerate Gal was under the care of several trainers including Burk Kessinger Jr. "She came onto her own when trained by Burk," McDonald said.
During her career, Degenerate Gal carved out a record of 22-11-6 from 60 starts with earnings of $936,393. Eleven of the wins came in stakes.
Degenerate Gal got out to a promising start as a broodmare. Her first foal, Blacktie Bid (by Black Tie Affair), won a stakes race as a 2-year-old. Degenerate Gal produced a total of 12 foals, nine of which were winners including Positive Gal (by Affirmed), who won two stakes including the Gallant Bloom Handicap (gr. III).
Nine of Degenerate Gal's offspring sold as yearlings, selling for a total of $2,670,000.