Anne M. Eberhardt

Subfertile Battle of Midway Returned to Training

Son of Smart Strike got only five of 60 mares bred in foal.

The stallion career of grade 1 winner Battle of Midway has been derailed and the 4-year-old son of Smart Strike is back in training, according to Daily Racing Form.

WinStar president and CEO Elliott Walden told DRF the stallion has only been able to impregnate five of 60 mares he bred this spring. Battle of Midway reportedly has a genetic disorder that affects the ability of his sperm to fuse with and fertilize an egg. 

Battle of Midway was insured and a subfertility claim has been paid off, according to Walden, who added that WinStar and Don Alberto (which raced the colt prior to his breeding career) have since bought the colt from the insurance company and put him back in training. Walden also told DRF this is the first subfertile stallion he's dealt with in his 15 years with WinStar, which now stands 21 stallions.

Bred in Kentucky by Thor-Bred Stables, Battle of Midway sold to Rick Porter's Fox Hill Farm as a yearling for $410,000 through the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga select yearling sale. The colt broke his maiden in his first start at 3 and earned a spot in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) starting gate with a runner-up finish in the Santa Anita Derby (G1). He would finish third in the Derby and eventually break through as a graded stakes winner in the Affirmed Stakes (G3). 

Battle of Midway ended his sophomore campaign with a sterling victory in the Las Vegas Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (G1). He retired to stud with a 5-2-2 record out of 10 starts and earned $1,249,949. His entering-year stud fee was set at $20,000.