Woodman Euthanized at Age 24

Woodman Euthanized at Age 24
Photo: Tony Leonard
Woodman's journey comes to end at age 24.
Woodman, a high-priced yearling, champion 2-year-old, and sire and broodmare sire of more than 100 stakes winners, was euthanized July 19 due to the infirmities of old age. The son of Mr. Prospector, who stood at Coolmore’s Ashford Stud near Versailles, Ky., was 24.

The stallion was also a shuttler who covered a large number of mares in both hemispheres. He has more than 1,900 named foals as a sire and more than 2,200 as a broodmare sire.

Woodman was not just about numbers but also about quality. In 1990, he was the leading freshman sire and also the leading sire of juveniles overall. That initial group included Hansel, named champion 3-year-old male after wins in the Preakness (gr. I) and Belmont (gr. I) Stakes; French champion 2-year-old male Hector Protector; and English champion juvenile male Mujtahid.

Woodman went on to sire champions and grade/group winners around the globe.

He is the sire of Irish and English champion Hawk Wing, who has gotten off to a quick start at stud with his first crop racing this year. Hawk Wing is represented by eight winners and just a day before his sire was euthanized, was represented by his first stakes winner when Triskel won the Irish Stallion Farms Silver Flash Stakes.

Woodman sired other champions, including Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner and champion 2-year-old male Timber Country, English champion filly Bosra Sham, Canadian champion Woodcarver, French champion Way of Light, Irish champion Dr Johnson, and Japanese champion Hishi Akebono.

“Woodman is one of a very select group of stallions to have sired more than 100 stakes winners and has been a terrific servant to his shareholders and to Ashford Stud. He will be sadly missed,” Dermot Ryan of Ashford Stud said.

Woodman’s first crop of foals in 1988 included 45 named foals, among them four juvenile stakes winning colts, including: Hector Protector, his leading earner despite racing in France, where he was six-for-six, his wins including the CIGA Grand Criterium, Prix de la Salamandre and Prix Morny Agence Francaise (all Fr-I); Mujtahid, who in England won the Scottish Gimcrack (Eng-II) and Anglia Television July (Eng-III) Stakes; and Hansel, who took the Arlington-Washington Futurity (gr. II) and Tremont Breeders’ Cup Stakes (gr. III).

Woodman’s progeny earnings in 1990 were $1,244,494, and he led the juvenile sire list again in 1994, when his 2-year-olds that year earned $1,294,355. Hector Protector helped him to lead France’s juvenile sire list in 1990 as well. To date, he has total progeny earnings of nearly $100 million.

Woodman has sired 109 stakes winners and coincidentally, is also represented by 109 as a broodmare sire. Stallion More Than Ready   is out of a Woodman mare, as are such other grade/group I winners as Carry On Katie, Mamool, and Snow Ridge.

Woodman was an active sire this year. Ashford reported more than 40 mares scanned in foal to him. He had not shuttled for several years but when he did, he covered a large number of mares. In 1997, he led all sires by mares covered with 174 in the Northern Hemisphere and 137 in the Southern Hemisphere. Most years when he shuttled, it was to Australia, but he was leased to stand one year in Brazil.

Woodman was bred in Kentucky by Warner L. Jones Jr., former owner of Hermitage Farm, and Edward A. Cox Jr. He was consigned for them by Lee Eaton to the 1984 Keeneland summer yearling sale, where BBA (England) purchased the colt on behalf of Robert Sangster for $3 million. His dam, Playmate, by Buckpasser, is a full sister to champion Numbered Account. Jones and Cox bought Playmate from Ogden Phipps in 1979 following her racing career.

Racing for Sangster and trainer Vincent O’Brien, Woodman won three of four outings as a 2-year-old, including the Ballsbridge-Tattersalls Anglesey Stakes (Ire-III) and Ferrans Fururity (Ire-III). He lost his final start of the year when shipped to England for the Dewhurst (Eng-I), but Timeform Racehorses of 1985 stated that Woodman “in finishing fifth, 2 1/2 lengths behind Huntingdale, put up the best performance by an Irish-trained 2-year-old of 1985.” He was the top weight, at 133 pounds, on the Irish Free Handicap.

Woodman made just one start at three, being retired after a third-place finish in the Mill Ridge Stakes.

His stud fee rose to $100,000 in 1992; this year he stood for $20,000.

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