Multiple Grade 1 winner Mshawish has been retired from racing due to a minor soft tissue injury that was discovered Friday morning at Belmont Park.
After conferring with veterinarian Duncan Moir, it was determined by the team of owner Al Shaqab Racing that it was in the best interest of Mshawish for him to be retired, since the timing would likely call for the son of Medaglia d'Oro to miss the key prep races leading up to his year-end goal – the Breeders' Cup Classic (G1) at Santa Anita. Mshawish will now be sent to his new home at Taylor Made Stallions in Nicholasville, Kentucky, where he's set to stand stud in 2017.
“Although it's sad to miss the Met Mile next Saturday and to not finish out the rest of 2016, it's hard to do anything but smile looking back at Mshawish's long career,” said Bradley Weisbord, U.S. advisor to Al Shaqab Racing. “He was a rare Grade 1 winner on both turf and dirt. He was as consistent of an elite racehorse that there is. He earned $2.4 million-plus while winning seven stakes in three countries. His last seven races in America produced 100-plus Beyer Speed Figures. He is an incredibly special horse for the entire Al Shaqab team, and really helped us get the U.S. operation off the ground. We are looking forward to seeing him pass that top-class grittiness and consistency onto his progeny, and having quite a few run in the Al Shaqab colors. We will undoubtedly support him heavily.”
Winner of this year's Donn Handicap (G1) at Gulfstream, Mshawish had been preparing for a start in the $1.5 million Metropolitan Handicap (G1) on June 11th at Belmont.
“It's extremely unfortunate because he had been training so well up to next Saturday's Met Mile, and the entire team was very confident and looking forward to a big second-half of the year,” said Ben Taylor, Vice President of Taylor Made Stallions. “The positive is that Mshawish is an exciting stallion prospect that's had a tremendous racing career, which he was able to take to another level when he switched to the dirt. The injury is a relatively minor one that he'll get over, and if he were a 3-year-old, you wouldn't even hesitate about bringing him back. We really look forward to standing Mshawish and introducing him to breeders. Medaglia d'Oro is one of the top stallions in the world, and Mshawish is his most accomplished son, with fast Grade 1 wins on both dirt & turf.”
Trained by Todd Pletcher, Mshawish was a Grade 1 winner on both dirt and turf, and captured five total Graded stakes and seven total stakes races during his highly-decorated racing career. He earned a 106 Beyer in his decisive victory in this year's $500,000 Donn H. in just his third lifetime start on the dirt, running 1 1/8 miles in 1:47.89. A year prior, Mshawish captured his first Grade 1 win in the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Turf H. (G1), earning a 104 Beyer for that performance.
Mshawish also owns Graded wins in the Zabeel Mile (G2) on turf at Meydan, Fort Lauderdale S. (G2) on turf at Gulfstream, and Hal's Hope S. (G3) in just his second career dirt start earlier this year at Gulfstream, showing top-class speed to run the one-turn mile in 1:34.61. He also won the Prix de Tourgeville S. at Deauville, El Prado S. at Gulfstream, and placed in the prestigious $6 million Dubai Turf (G1) on World Cup day. Mshawish recorded a string of seven consecutive triple-digit Beyers from his last seven starts in North America – on both dirt and turf.
“Mshawish has always impressed me with his versatility, high-cruising speed, and neat ability to also have an exciting turn of foot,” said Pletcher. “He was top class on both surfaces, and showed up every time we led him over there. It's a shame he's going to miss the Met Mile as that race would have suited him perfectly. He was a fun one to train, one that the stable will really miss. I look forward to training his babies a few years down the road.”
Mshawish retires with eight wins from 24 starts and earnings of $2,421,351, making him the most accomplished son of leading sire Medaglia d'Oro to retire to stud. He is out of the Thunder Gulch mare Thunder Bayou, his second dam is a multiple stakes-producing Storm Cat mare, and his third dam is the Graded stakes-winning juvenile by Seeking the Gold, At The Half, dam of multiple Graded stakes-winning millionaire Lu Ravi and granddam of champion Halfbridled.
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