International breeding giant Coolmore has secured the breeding rights for US Triple Crown contender American Pharoah.
The Bob Baffert-trained colt has the first two legs – Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes – in his keeping and will head to Belmont Park for the Belmont Stakes on June 6 where he will attempt to become the first horse to win the elusive US Triple Crown since Affirmed achieved the feat in 1978.
Coolmore, who’ve also secured Australia’s top two juveniles this season, Vancouver and Pride of Dubai, overnight announced that American Pharoah would join its Ashford Stud roster at the conclusion of his racing career.
“Whatever happens in the Belmont, American Pharoah is an outstanding sire prospect and we’re very grateful to the Zayat family for entrusting us with his stallion career,” Ashford Stud manager Dermot Ryan said.
“He’s already a champion two-year-old and has won his first four starts at three by over 20 lengths. It’s very exciting to think about how much more he might achieve.”
American Pharoah is a homebred from Ahmed Zayat’s Zayat Stables.
A four-time Grade I winner, American Pharoah has won six of seven starts earning $US3.7 million and will continue to carry the colours of Zayat Stables, who own 100 percent of the horse’s racing rights.
“I will make all of the racing decisions,” Zayat told The Associated Press.
“If he runs in the Belmont, and God willing wins, and we’re still fortunate, he will continue to race. This is not an issue whatsoever.
“But once the year ends, Coolmore will be making the decisions, and it’s unlikely he will race again.
“The values are too insane. It’s just not economically feasible to continue.”