Forest Wildcat Dead at 17
Photo: Tony Leonard
Forest Wildcat
Brookdale Farm announced Aug. 22 the death of its stallion Forest Wildcat. The graded stakes-winning son of Storm Cat died the evening of Aug. 21 at Rood & Riddle Equine Clinic near Lexington. An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death.

According to the farm’s release, he had undergone emergency surgery Aug. 20 after showing signs of discomfort. The sire of 55 stakes winners, including Puerto Rican Horse of the Year D’ Wildcat Speed, Forest Wildcat will be buried at Brookdale, where he had stood since 1997.

Out of the Bold Native mare Victoria Beauty, Forest Wildcat was bred in Florida by Ocala Stud Farm and was a $325,000 Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. select sale 2-year-old in early 1993. He was a half-brother to grade II winner Queen Alexandra.

Forest Wildcat was a four-time stakes winner and earner of $478,862 while taking nine of 20 starts for Everett “Eb” Novak’s New Farm and trainer Ben Perkins Sr. In 1996, he won the Maryland Breeders’ Cup Handicap (gr. III; equaling Pimlico's six-furlong track record of 1:09) and the Finger Lakes Breeders’ Cup Handicap (gr. III). Later in the year, in the Ben Cohen Stakes at Pimlico, he equaled the track record again. He closed out his career with a one-length victory in the six-furlong Phoenix Breeders’ Cup Stakes at Keeneland.

He entered stud in 1997 for a fee of $10,000 at Fred Seitz’ Brookdale Farm near Versailles, Ky., and sired 678 foals from nine crops of racing age. He has sired 379 winners (56%) and his runners have earned in excess of $34 million.

Forest Wildcat's other major stakes winners include English sprint champion Var, Acorn (gr. I) winner Forest Secrets, and young stallions Wildcat Heir and D’wildcat. Both Wildcat Heir and D’wildcat won Laurel Park’s grade I Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash Stakes.

Forest Wildcat is represented by 12 stakes winners in 2008, including Coolmore Lexington Stakes (gr. II) winner Behindatthebar and grade III winners Brownie Points, Coragil Cat, and Chatain. Ranked among the top 25 leading sires of 2008, he stood the 2008 breeding season for $35,000.

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