The fairytale story of American Pharoah continued on October 31, 2015 with a victory in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Keeneland Racecourse in Kentucky. American Pharoah struck the lead early in the race and dominated throughout, drawing off to win by multiple lengths and cement his legacy as the greatest racehorse of all time.
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Prior to the race the connections of American Pharoah were very emotional. Under the terms of a breeding agreement signed by Zayat Racing Stables, American Pharoah was to be retired to stud immediately following his performance in the Classic. For owner Ahmed Zayat and trainer Bob Baffert the race brought a bittersweet end to their partnership with the star horse. Pharoah made the ten mile trip from Keeneland to the Coolmore stud farm the day after he became the first horse to win what is being called the Grand Slam of Horseracing.
Horseracing’s first Grand Slam champion
For years the standard of highest excellence in horseracing has been the Triple Crown which consists of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes. Only a handful of horses have ever completed the sweep and the last one to do it before American Pharoah was Affirmed in 1978. The series is difficult and very hard on young horses.
When Affirmed won the Triple Crown in 1978 there was no Breeders’ Cup Classic. The Classic has been used in recent years to solidify the best horse in horseracing. American Pharoah was the first Triple Crown winner to have an opportunity to race in the Classic and the industry was quick to create a new designation, the Grand Slam, for horses that win all four races.
After the race jockey Victor Espinosa was so choked up he could barely speak to Donna Brothers as she attempted to interview him as he sat on American Pharoah’s back for the last time. Espinosa will also go down in the record book as the first jockey to win the Grand Slam.
Life at stud
While horseracing fans are sad that they will not be able to see American Pharoah race again they can take comfort in knowing that his life at stud will be a life of leisure. Coolmore Stud will spare no expense in creating an environment that supports the horse’s health and happiness.
American Pharoah will spend his remaining days eating the best food in the best living accommodations and mating with the best thoroughbred mares in the country. It truly will be a life worthy of a Grand Slam champion.
All of us at EZ Horse Betting would like to thank American Pharoah for giving us a year of memories that will last a lifetime! Don’t forget to check out the racebook Reviews!