Won at 4WOODWARD S.
(gr. I , 9f , defeating Past the Point, Wanderin Boy, A. P. Arrow, Loose Leaf, Divine Park, Out of Control (BRZ) ).
Few superlatives remain to describe the mighty Curlin, reigning Horse of the Year and indisputably one of the best runners this country has seen for some time. Even the ÒGraveyard of Champions,Ó as Saratoga is sometimes called, may have once felled Man oÕ War and Secretariat, but it was no match for CurlinÕs super powers.
Arguably the most highly-anticipated Spa event this season, the $500,000 Woodward Stakes (gr. I) Aug. 30 marked the main track return of Curlin after a one-race foray on the grass, where he suffered his first loss since the 2007 Haskell Invitational Stakes (gr. I). The Woodward may not have been the 4-year-oldÕs most spectacular win visually, but his 11Ú4-length triumph catapulted him over Skip Away to second on North AmericaÕs all-time earnings list. His $9,796,800 ranks him behind only Cigar.
A classic winner, BreedersÕ Cup winner, and Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) winner, Curlin has 10 wins from 14 career starts and has never been worse than third. After claiming 2007 Eclipse Award honors as Horse of the Year and champion 3-year-old male, the massive son of Smart Strike has been perfect on the dirt this year while traveling to Dubai and back. Trained by Steve Asmussen, his only hiccup was a second to 2006 John Deere BreedersÕ Cup Turf (gr. IT) winner Red Rocks in the 11-furlong Man oÕ War Stakes (gr. IT). A proposed trip to France for the Prix de lÕArc de Triomphe (Fr-I) has since been ruled out.
Bred in Kentucky by Issam FaresÕ Fares Farm, a 760-acre full-service nursery just a stoneÕs throw from Keeneland, Curlin campaigns in the name of majority owner Stonestreet Stables, the nom de course of wine magnate Jess Jackson.
The unraced Deputy Minister mare SherriffÕs Deputy foaled Curlin and two other winners. Her only living foal since CurlinÕs birth is a yearling filly by Saint Liam who didnÕt meet her reserve as a weanling at the 2007 Keeneland November sale. The mare was barren to Smart Strike for 2008 and has been bred back to him for 2009.
The leading sire of 2007 and thus far in 2008, Smart Strike has sired 54 stakes winners. His six 2008 added-money winners also include Communique (gr. IIIT) and Goodwood Aug. 23 stakes winner Tungsten Strike. A 16-year-old son of Mr. Prospector, Smart Strike holds court for $150,000 at William S. FarishÕs LaneÕs End Farm near Versailles, Ky.ÑJ.W.
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