Aside from the Classic and the Distaff, the Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Juvenile is one of the most closely watched contests during the two-day racing festival. The Juvenile gives 2-year-olds one last chance to showcase their skills ahead of Eclipse Award voting and is often the start of Kentucky Derby fever for the next racing season.
Some Juvenile winners later make good on the promise they showed in their 2-year-old seasons, while others seem to fall off racing's radar after accepting the Juvenile trophy. As this year's Breeders' Cup Juvenile approaches, we take a look back at past winners and where they are now.
Nyquist, 2015: After winning the Kentucky Derby, Nyquist will contest the Breeders' Cup Classic this year at his home base of Santa Anita Park.
Texas Red, 2014: A $17,000 yearling purchase by trainer Keith Desormeaux, Texas Red went on to finish a strong second in the G2 San Vicente but developed a hoof abscess, taking him out of consideration for the Kentucky Derby. He returned later in the summer to win the G2 Jim Dandy, then came up with cannon bone bruise and later, an ankle injury. A report in the Blood-Horse last month indicated the colt's owners still plan on returning him to the track. Texas Red is expected to rejoin Desormeaux's Santa Anita string this fall after enjoying turnout in Southern California over the summer.
New Year's Day, 2013: New Year's Day won the Juvenile for owner Gary West in an upset over favored Havana but retired a few weeks after his victory. He incurred a non-displaced left hind sesamoid chip during training. The former Bob Baffert trainee retired to Hill 'n' Dale, where he stood the 2016 season for a fee of $5,000. His family has become more valuable since his departure: he is the half-brother of multiple graded stakes winner Mohaymen. His first foals are yearlings this year.
Shanghai Bobby, 2012: Shanghai Bobby's Juvenile helped earn him the 2012 Eclipse Award for Champion 2-Year-Old Colt. Although he was second in the G3 Holy Bull, he was fifth in the G1 Florida Derby and raced just once more before retiring to Ashford Stud in Kentucky. He stood the 2016 season for a $15,000 fee. His first foals are yearlings this season and several have drawn six-figure prices at the summer and autumn auctions.
Hansen, 2011: The gray son of Tapit also won the Eclipse after his Juvenile performance and accumulated wins in the G3 Gotham and G3 Iowa Derby for trainer Mike Maker and owners Kendall Hansen/Skychai Racing. He stood just one season at Ashford Stud before being sold to South Korean interests.
Uncle Mo, 2010: Arguably the most successful sire of the recent Juvenile winners, Uncle Mo also won the Eclipse for his 2-year-old season but did not make the Kentucky Derby. He was second in the G1 King's Bishop and won the G2 Kelso before retiring to Ashford. Since then, the former Todd Pletcher trainee has topped Blood-Horse's Second Crop Sires list and has 15 black-type stakes winners from 136 runners this year, including Nyquist, Outwork, and Gomo.
Vale of York (IRE), 2009: The Juvenile was the only American start for this Godolphin runner, who had previously run in England and Italy. He had just one more start, a fifth in a Meydan stakes the following year, before retiring with over $1.2 million in earnings. He stood his first season at Kildangan Stud in Ireland for about $5,500 and has since transferred to Haras des Faunes in France, where his fee was private in 2016.
Midshipman, 2008: Also a Godolphin runner, Midshipman picked up the 2-year-old Eclipse Award and returned to the Breeders' Cup the following year to run third in the Dirt Mile. In between, the son of Unbridled's Song started just once, having suffered a soft tissue injury to his left foreleg during training in February of his 3-year-old year. He now stands stud at Darley America for a 2016 fee of $8,500. Four-year-old G3 winner Lady Shipman is his most successful progeny this season.
War Pass, 2007: After his Juvenile victory, War Pass finished second in the G1 Wood Memorial for trainer Nick Zito and owner Robert LaPenta. He fractured an ankle in the Wood and retired to Lane's End, where he stood his first season for a fee of $30,000. Two years later, War Pass died suddenly shortly after his return from shuttling to an Australian stud farm for the Southern Hemisphere season. He left behind eventual Kentucky Derby runners Revolutionary and Java's War.
Street Sense, 2006: Street Sense famously became the first horse to break the Kentucky Derby curse surrounding the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, defeating Hard Spun in the Derby by a decisive 2 ¼ lengths. The Jim Tafel homebred continued on with trainer Carl Nafzger to win the G2 Jim Dandy and G1 Travers and was second in the G1 Preakness, but finished his season with a fourth in the G1 Breeders' Cup Classic. Also a resident of Darley in Kentucky, he has proven a respectable sire of stakes winners Sweet Reason, Wedding Toast, and Fleet Street, among others. His 2016 fee was $45,000.
Stevie Wonderboy, 2005: Stevie Wonderboy ran just once more after his Juvenile victory (which clinched the 2-year-old Eclipse Award for him); he finished second in the G2 San Rafael in January and suffered a condylar fracture in his right front ankle during a workout in February 2006. The Merv Griffin-owned colt underwent surgery and went back into training but was retired to Airdrie Stud in 2007. He now resides at Haras Don Alberto in Chile, where his fee is listed as private.
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