Arlene's Sun Star Stable's homebred Miss Sky Warrior, a three-time grade 2 winner and one of the favorites for last year's Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1), has been retired from racing. The 4-year-old filly by First Samurai has a date with 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah for 2018.
Trained by Kelly Breen for Al and Arlene London, Miss Sky Warrior won five of 10 starts and earned $687,340. She exited her eighth-place finish in the Oaks with an injury that left her on the sidelines for several months. She returned to training and made three starts toward the end of 2017 but was unable to return to form.
"It took five months to bring her back and she was training very well, but she just wasn't the same," Al London said. "We didn't know if she could come back at all. We thought she could return to the top level, but she just couldn't finish. She's too good a horse and we have too much respect for her."
Miss Sky Warrior, out of the London's Sky Minister (by Conquistador Cielo), brought a five-race winning streak to last May's Oaks that included wins in the Tempted Stakes (G3) and Demoiselle Stakes (G2) at Aqueduct Racetrack to cap her juvenile campaign, and victories as the favorite in Gulfstream Park's Davona Dale Stakes (G2) and Aqueduct's Gazelle Stakes (G2).
After the Oaks she was fourth in Belmont Park's Turnback the Alarm Handicap (G3), third in the nine-furlong Comely Stakes (G3), and sixth in Gulfstream's Tropical Park Oaks on the turf.
Miss Sky Warrior shipped to the Greathouse family's Glencrest Farm in Central Kentucky, where she was raised, and will be bred later this year to American Pharoah.
London, a "big fan" of American Pharoah, selected the stallion with assistance from agent Ed Rosen and Equix' Suzanne Smallwood.
"I want to breed something I'd like to own," London said.