Beautiful Pleasure, winning the 2000 Shuvee Handicap.

Beautiful Pleasure, winning the 2000 Shuvee Handicap.

Beautiful Pleasure Retired After Sixth in Beldame

Beautiful Pleasure, the champion older mare of 1999 who is winless in four starts this year, has been retired following her sixth-place finish in Saturday's Beldame Stakes (gr. I).

"She's telling us that that's it, so she's through," said John Ward, who was listed as the trainer for Beautiful Pleasure, although the mare was actually under the care of Donna Ward.

Owned by John and Debby Oxley, Beautiful Pleasure won 10 of 25 starts, with earnings of $2,734,078. The 6-year-old Maudlin mare's last victory was in last year's Personal Ensign Handicap (gr. I).

Her other top victories came during her championship season in which she won the Personal Ensign, the Breeders' Cup Distaff, and the Beldame. Beautiful Pleasure was also victorious last year in the Hempstead Handicap (gr. I) and won the 1997 Matron Stakes (gr. I) as a 2-year-old.

Although he did not know to whom Beautiful Pleasure will be bred next year, the Oxleys had planned to breed her to Storm Cat during the 2001 breeding season before deciding to continue to race her this year.