Newmarket-based trainer Jeremy Noseda expressed shock Tuesday morning after being notified that one-time Kentucky Derby candidate Gronkowski and other horses owned by the Dubai-based Phoenix Thoroughbreds were being taken from his Shalfleet training yard.
“The Phoenix-owned horses have left Shalfleet,” Noseda said in a post on Twitter. “I am shocked and surprised by their decision. I have no reason or explanation for the decision.”
Tom Ludt, vice president of equine operations for Phoenix Thoroughbreds, said Gronkowski is being transferred to two-time Eclipse Award-winning trainer Chad Brown in New York. The remainder of the 15 Phoenix Thoroughbreds horses previously trained by Noseda are staying in Europe with Martin Meade, Ed Vaughan, Richard Hannon, Robert Cowell and Karl Burke.
The move by Phoenix, an investment fund led by Amer Abdulaziz, is the second major personnel change in two months. In March, on the eve of the OBS 2-year-old March sale, the big-spending outfit fired Noseda's estranged wife, Kerri Radcliffe, who had served as bloodstock agent for Phoenix Thoroughbreds since it began buying at major Thoroughbred auctions around the world in 2017.
Phoenix Thoroughbreds also has horses in the U.S. with trainer Bob Baffert, who gave the enterprise its first Grade 1 victory when Dream Tree won the Starlet Stakes in December at Los Alamitos.
Gronkowski had qualified for the Kentucky Derby by earning the most points in races designated as the European Road to the Kentucky Derby. He developed a fever and missed the Derby and was then pointed for the Belmont Stakes on June 9. New England Patriots star Rob Gronkowski, the horse's namesake, had been brought on board as part owner of the colt by Lonhro.
CORRECTION: The original version of this article said Gronkowski and other Phoenix Thoroughbreds horses previously trained by Jeremy Noseda were going to Chad Brown.
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2019 Paulick Report.