Every once in a while there's a story with a happy ending. Thank Kristen Mulhall for taking such good care of him.
those of you on Facebook should check out their page, and if possible plan a trip to this beautiful farm in KY.
HOT OFF THE PRESS - NEW OLD FRIENDS RESIDENTS BLUESTHESTANDARD & COMMENTATORShare
Today at 6:04pm
TWO EMAILS RELEASED TODAY
A BLUE SKY WEEKEND WITH BLUESTHESTANDARD
Old Friends Welcomes Multiple Graded Stakes Winner Bluesthestandard
GEORGETOWN, KY-OCTOBER 2, 2009-Multiple graded stakes winner Bluesthestandard,
who ascended from the ranks of $10,000 claimers to earn more than $1 million on
the racetrack, will arrive today at Old Friends's Dream Chase Farm in
Georgetown, KY where he will spend the rest of his days.
The popular son of American Standard was retired from racing in April 2006,
thanks to the combined efforts of then-owner Steve Sobel and trainer Kristin
Mulhall, who was a long-time fan of the gelding. Mulhall offered to buy
Bluesthestandard and retire him before he fell too far down the claiming ranks
on the Southern California circuit.
She contacted Sobel and they agreed the horse had earned a dignified career end,
and so the horse was promptly sent to Mulhall's farm in Covina, California.
Bluesthestandard finished his career with 19 wins from 47 starts and the
distinction of being the leading male Georgia-bred earner of all-time.
His victories include the Texas Mile Stakes (G3) at Lone Star Park, and the
Potrero Grande Breeders' Cup Handicap (G2) and the Palos Verdes Handicap (G2) at
Santa Anita. In 2003 Bluesthestandard finished a game second to Cajun Beat in
the Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1).
Over the years, Bluesthestandard began some light training under saddle with
Mulhall, a life-long equestrian. He even began jumping over small fences.
"Blue has a lot of fans that I have not been able to accommodate while he has
been here at my house for the past 3 1/2 years,” said Mulhall "Realizing that he
will never be sound enough to make a riding horse, which he truly loved, I
talked it over with Margaret Ransom–who also played a huge roll in me purchasing
Blue–about finding him a forever home where he would be able to see all of his
"It was very hard letting him go,” Mulhall continued, "but after lots of
thought, talking to (Old Friends President and founder) Michael Blowen, and
seeing what a wonderful job he has done, I realized that Old Friends was the
best place for Blue to live out his years. I already miss him.”
"It's amazing to have this horse with us,” said Blowen. "We have been able to
help a few others that have fallen to the bottom of the claiming ranks,” he
added pointing to one-time Derby contender Danthebluegrassman and Belmont
Futurity winner Siphonizer. "Kristin did an amazing thing retiring him, and she
did an amazing job taking care of him. We hope all of Blue's many fans will
visit him in the coming months."
COMMENTATOR TO OLD FRIENDS
Owners Tracy and Carol Farmer Select the Kentucky-based Retirement Farm as home
for their Two-time Whitney H. Winner
GEORGETOWN, KY-OCTOBER 2, 2009-Tracy and Carol Farmer have chosen Old Friends
Thoroughbred Retirement Farm in Georgetown, KY as the permanent home for their
two-time Whitney Handicap-winning star Commentator, it was announced today.
The 8-year-old gelding is currently at Mike Evans' Sheltowee Farm in Versailles,
KY and will be shipped, courtesy of Sallee HorseVans, to the 92-acre Georgetown
facility on Sunday October 4th.
Old Friends is open to the public and conducts three guided tours daily. Fans
are invited to visit with the great son of Distorted Humor along with the 53
other Thoroughbred champions pensioned at the farm.
Campaigned for six spectacular seasons by the Farmers and Hall of Fame trainer
Nick Zito, Commentator ended his career in August having won 14 of 24 starts and
a bankroll of well over $2 million. In addition to double victories in the GR
1Whitney, he captured the GR 2 Richter Scale and the $500, 000 Massachusetts
Handicap, which he won by 14 lengths.
In 2008, after his five-length Whitney win, Commentator was awarded a Beyer
Speed Figure of 120-the highest of any horse all year, including those posted by
Horse of the Year Curlin and unbeaten heroine Zenyatta.
Of his 14 career victories, Commentator's narrowest margin of victory was a
neck, when he went wire-to-wire to defeat eventual Horse of the Year Saint Liam
in the 2005 Whitney. In six of his wins, the famed New York-bred triumphed by 10
lengths or more.
His last race-an attempt to match the three-time Whitney win records set by
Kelso and Discovery-resulted in a third-place finish.
The NYRA feted Commentator's superlative career by having him parade before fans
on Sept. 6 at Saratoga and naming a stakes race for New York-bred 3-year-olds
Despite numerous invitations for their champion, the Farmers selected Old
Friends. "I think they do a great job, and we're going to be helping them
however we can", said Tracy Farmer, who has also campaigned such champions as
Albert the Great, Sir Shackleton, Sun King, and Old Friends retiree Hidden Lake,
who won the Eclipse award for Older Female in 1997. "And not just for
Commentator, but for other horses, too," he added. "My wife Carol and I want a
place for horses such as Commentator to retire, and we want (Old Friends) to be
very successful. Michael Blowen just does a terrific job."
"I am overwhelmed by both the trust and generosity Mr. and Mrs. Farmer has shown
toward Old Friends." said Old Friends founder and President Blowen. "To have a
great athlete like Commentator with his huge fan base come to Old Friends is
like having Elvis in the building.
"I also want to thank Nick Zito for keeping this horse in such remarkable
condition" Blowen continued. "Commentator is retiring perfectly sound, and that
alone is a testament to his great training and care over the years."
Blowen notes that Farmer will also be donating stallion seasons in many of his
great breeders to support Commentator and the more than 70 Thoroughbreds cared
for by Old Friends. "It's a tribute to the heart and soul of our workers and
volunteers and proof that if you do indeed put the horses' interest first things
will work out," he added.
On Oct. 20, Old Friends will hold a special celebration called "Jockey Day."
Many of the jocks that rode Old Friends retirees and the newly arrived
Commentator will serve as the very special guests. Expected attendees include
the Farmers, Derby winner Calvin Borel, Belmont winner Kent Desormeaux, Jockeys
star Jon Court, Hall of Famer Chris McCarron, Triple Crown winner Jean Cruguet,
and Derby winner Bobby Ussery, among many others.
Commentator's fans can visit him anytime after Wednesday October 7. He joins
recent retirees Black Tie Affair, Jade Hunter, Tour of the Cat, Sgt Bert, Sea
Native, Marshall Rooster, and Bluesthestandard.