Cambest, the fastest standardbred pacer of all time, died on Wednesday at Walnut Hall Stud in Lexington, Kentucky at the age of 27.
Cambest had spent more than 20 years at the stud, and farm president and general manager Alan Leavitt said he died of an apparent heart attack.
He said Cambest had been seen by a farmhand trotting along his fenceline just a few minutes before he was found dead.
“He was fine until suddenly something struck him down,” Leavitt said. “It was just as quick as snapping your fingers.”
Owned by Daniel Kramer of Scarsdale, New York, The son of Cam Fella paced 1:46.1 in a mile time trial on August 16, 1993, driven by Bill O’Donnell for trainer Fred Grant at the Illinois State Fair in Springfield.
“He was blessed with more extreme speed than anybody, before or since,” Leavitt said.
Out of the Harold J mare Oxford Mary Ann, Cambest earned $1.4 million in his four-year career, and was an equally good sire. His progeny earnings of nearly $135 million to date make him seventh among pacing sires according to the career earnings of their foals.
Cambest has sired 596 performers under 1:55.
Cambest will be buried in the Walnut Hall cemetery beside the graves of Scotland, Volomite and Garland Lobell.
Below: Cambest’s world-record breaking time trial.