Leading thoroughbred sire Lucky Pulpit has died at the age of 16 from a suspected heart attack, just days after his son California Chrome was named California-bred Horse of the Year for 2016.
The son of Pulpit (AP Indy) and Lucky Soph (Cozzene) died on February 13 while covering his first mare of the 2017 season at Harris Farm in Coalinga, California. Both farm manager David McGlothlin and stallion manager Raul Rosa were in the breeding shed with Lucky Pulpit collapsed.
California Chrome’s latest accolade came at the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association’s Annual Meeting and Awards Dinner last week, with Lucky Pulpit honored twice, as Champion Sire of California Conceived Foals by both earnings and wins.
Lucky Pulpit was bred, owned and raced by Mr and Mrs Larry Williams and stood his entire career at Harris Farms.
Multiple Eclipse winner and North American racing’s all-time leading money winner California Chrome, with earnings of more than $US14 million, is his best performer. Lucky Pulpit currently sits atop California’s 2017 general sire list. He was the state’s leading sire last year by progeny earnings, with more than $10.7 million and was the state’s leading sire in three of the past four years.
From seven crops of racing age, Lucky Pulpit is the sire of 148 winners. His 229 starters to date have amassed progeny earnings of $24 million.
David McGlothlin said there were still three crops from Lucky Pulpit to race.
“Lucky Pulpit hit homerun after homerun with his offspring both in the sales ring and on the racetrack and from early on we had a glimpse of what he would become as a sire,” he said.
Lucky Pulpit was a winner in his second outing at two. He then placed in a grade 3 at two and a placing in a grade 2 at three, before capturing the five furlong turf Smile Stakes at Arlington Park as a four-year-old. Overall, he won three races from twenty-two starts with five seconds and five thirds earning $209,928.