Grade I winner Officer, who won his first five races as a juvenile last year, will enter stud at Graham J. Beck's Gainesway Farm near Lexington. Gainesway owns Officer with Dennis Narlinger, who privately bought the colt from the estate of Prince Ahmed Salman's The Thoroughbred Corp. Officer will stand for $12,500 live foal and will be limited to 115 mares his first season.
"Everyone is looking for grade I 2-year-old speed, and Officer is the real deal," said Michael Hernon of Gainesway. "Officer, who sold for $700,000 as a 2-year-old (at the Barretts March sale), has great conformation and represents the highly successful In Reality sire line through his sire, Bertrando."
Bred by Martin and Pam Wygod, Officer was the overwhelming favorite for championship honors last year after winning the Champagne Stakes (gr. I), the Del Mar Futurity (gr. II), the Best Pal Stakes (gr. III) in stakes-record time, and the Graduation Stakes. He went off the 3-5 favorite in the Bessemer Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I), but disappointed and finished unplaced. He closed out the year with placings in the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I) and California Cup Juvenile Stakes. He finished third in Eclipse Award balloting.
Officer raced once in preparation for the Triple Crown, winning the restricted Zany Tactics Stakes at Santa Anita in April, but was withheld from the classics. Officer failed to run again because of injuries and retires with six wins from nine starts and $804,090 in earnings for trainer Bob Baffert. His dam, stakes winner St. Helens Shadow, is by Seattle Slew's son Septieme Ciel.
Narlinger was assisted in Officer's purchase by Bruno De Berdt, in association with FitzGerald/Keogh Agency.Complete list of First Year Stallions of 2003