Champion filly Tempera, winning the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies.

Champion filly Tempera, winning the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies.

Champion Filly Tempera Euthanized; Tragic Turn For Oaks

Kentucky Oaks developments took a tragic turn Monday when it was revealed that Godolphin Racing's Tempera had been euthanized late Sunday night. Last year's champion 2-year-old filly became ill at Churchill Downs Friday and was taken to Hagyard-Davidson-McGee veterinary clinic in Lexington on Saturday. The daughter of A.P. Indy developed colitis, then foundered, according to Tom Albertrani, an assistant to the filly's trainer, Saeed bin Suroor.

"Early Friday morning she developed a fever," Albertrani said. "It was up and down most of Friday, but she seemed pretty comfortable. The following day, her temperature was still high, and she was acting a bit colicky. We were a bit concerned, so we sent her to Hagyard's just to observe her and watch her more closely. And then she developed colitis and it turned it into laminitis. Unfortuntately, last night, they had to put her down. It's pretty shocking really to hear how suddenly her condition changed within 24 hours.

"I was hoping it was going to be minor thing. With a 'temp,' usually you do the basic things, and get it down, and they're OK. It's hard to explain how these things really happen. We took all the precautions, and we looked after her. It's upsetting for everybody."

Alex Harthill, a well-known veterinarian and president of the Kentucky Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, said situations such as Tempera's were "very unusual, but not unprecedented."

Bred in Kentucky by Sheikh Mohammed's Darley Stud Management, Tempera captured the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies and the Sorrento Stakes at Del Mar during last year's championship campaign. She also finished third in the Del Mar Debutante Stakes (gr. I). This year in Dubai, she was second in both the UAE One Thousand Guineas and the UAE Oaks. She won three of her seven career races and earned $770,240.