Oldest Kentucky Derby winner Go For Gin dies at 31

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Go For Gin (1991-2002).
Go For Gin (1991-2002). © Kentucky Horse Park

Go For Gin, the winner of the 1994 Kentucky Derby, has died at the age of 31 at the Kentucky Horse Park.

The oldest living Kentucky Derby winner died on Tuesday, March 8, from heart failure. He had lived at the Kentucky Horse Park since June 2011 when he was retired from stud duty.

Kentucky Horse Park Executive Director Lee Carter said Go for Gin was a visitor favourite.

“We’re honored that Go for Gin was an ambassador of the park for nearly 11 years. Go for Gin brought visitors from around the world to the Bluegrass and introduced new fans to the sport of Thoroughbred racing. He will be greatly missed by all of us at the Kentucky Horse Park.”

Go for Gin was bred in Kentucky by Pamela Darmstadt duPont, owned by William J. Condren and Joseph Cornacchia, and trained by Nick Zito. As a two-year-old, Go for Gin, the son of Cormorant and Never Knock, won the Remsen Stakes (G2). At three, he was one of the few racehorses to beat the mighty Holy Bull, which he did in winning the 120th Kentucky Derby with Hall of Fame jockey Chris McCarron. He followed that win with a second in the Preakness Stakes (G1) and the Belmont Stakes (G1) losing both of those races to Tabasco Cat. From age two to four, Go for Gin won 14 out of his 19 races, earning $1,380,866.

He took up stud duty at Claiborne Farm in Kentucky and was later sold to Bonita Farm in Maryland, where he had been standing since 2004. His progeny have earned more than $16.5 million and include Albert the Great, winner of more than $3 million.

Chris McCarron said his memories of Go For Gin giving him his second Kentucky Derby victory “will remain indelible in my heart for as long as I live. Rest in peace, my old pal”.

Go For Gin shared the Kentucky Horse Park Hall of Champions with other champion horses, including Thoroughbreds Funny Cide and Point Given, Standardbred pacers Western Dreamer and Won the West, and Standardbred trotter Mr Muscleman.

Go for Gin will be buried at the Memorial Walk of Champions alongside past Thoroughbred residents Forego, Bold Forbes, John Henry, Alysheba and Da Hoss.

The Kentucky Horse Park said a public memorial service will be held for Go for Gin at a future date.

 

Get Stormy (2006-2022) © Crestwood Farm
Get Stormy (2006-2022) © Crestwood Farm

Top racehorse and sire Get Stormy at the age of 16 from what is believed to be a cardiac event. Lexington, Kentucky-based Crestwood Farm announced that the son of Stormy Atlantic died unexpectedly on March 6.

Crestwood Farm’s Pope McLean said his death was a great loss to the farm and to Storm Cat’s legacy.

“Get Stormy was an amazing racehorse, and came to us with all the credentials and a tremendous following. He was such a great physical specimen, and was a pleasure to be around. He was poised to become a top sire, as his best-bred crops have yet to race. We are sorry and shocked,” McLean said.

Get Stormy was bred and owned by Mary A. Sullivan, who raced under the name Sullimar Stables. Trained by Tom Bush, Get Stormy had a long successful campaign which included seven graded stakes wins. Get Stormy raced until age six, and he was a three-time Grade 1 winner, winning the Marker’s Mark Mile, Woodford Reserve Turf Classic Stakes, Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap. From 31 career starts, he compiled a record of 11-5-4 and earned $1,606,812.

Get Stormy was popular in his first year at stud, breeding 120 mares in his first season. His first crop included graded stakes winner Fifty Five, who was a nine-time stakes winner, earning $1,088,288 and was named New York’s champion 3-year-old filly in 2017 and the state’s champion turf female in 2019. Also from Get Stormy’s first crop was multiple graded stakes winner, Storm the Hill.

Get Stormy’s most prolific runner, the multiple Grade 1-winning filly, Got Stormy with earnings of $2,468,403. She won the Grade 1 Fourstardave in 2019 and again in 2021. She set a new course record during her first Fourstardave victory, completing one mile in 1:32, while defeating males at Saratoga Race Course. In December of 2019, Got Stormy won her second Grade 1 race in the Matriarch Stakes at Del Mar.

As of March 5, 2022, Get Stormy is the sire of 229 starters, 123 winners, six graded stakes winners (Got Stormy, Fifty Five, Get Smokin, Storm the Hill, Go Noni Go, and Getmotherarose), and a total of 11 black-type winners and total progeny earnings of $12,188,748.

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