Dortmund retired to stud
IT’S all over the racing news that Dortmund has retired to stud, but it is still unknown what breeding farm will receive the famed winner of the 2015 Santa Anita Derby.
According to trainer Art Sherman, they are “still in negotiations” as to the next stage of Dortmund’s career.
Bred in Kentucky by Emilie Gerlinde Fojan, Dortmund (Big Brown x Our Josephina) was foaled two days before Valentine’s Day in 2012. The oversized colt won his debut race in November 14 at Santa Anita Park as well as the Los Alamitos Futurity (G1).
At three, he won the Santa Anita Derby (G1), San Felipe Stakes (G2), Robert B. Lewis S. (G3), Native Diver S. (G3), and Big Bear S. He also placed third to American Pharoah in the Kentucky Derby and fourth in the Preakness Stakes.
Dortmund’s 4YO year was less than stellar because of foot problems. He placed a close second in the San Diego Handicap (G2), losing to California Chrome by only half a length after a grueling stretch duel. He was third in the Pacific Classic S. (G1) to California Chrome and champion racemare Beholder.
Dortmund met California Chrome again in the Awesome Again S. (G1), but was beaten by 2-1/4 lengths to settle for second. In November, he ranin the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile but only made fourth place.
This year, at five, he was sixth in the Kilroe Mile (G1, turf) and fourth in the Santana Mile last April 1.
Sherman said of the decision to retire Dortmund: “It seemed like the right time now that he’s getting older. He’s just not the Dortmund he used to be.”
Owner Kaleem Shah made the choice to spare Dortmund any further stress. “When I saw him get beat last time, I thought that was enough… He’s been so good to us. It’s time to take care of him.”
Shah comes from a racing family in India. His father, Majeed Shah, was one of the top trainers. He forbade his son from entering racing and instead encouraged him to get an education.
“Just like in the US,” Shah explained, “the top trainers, like my father, have it made, while the rest of them have a tough time, going month to month. So for us it was not even an option. He said should you be blessed with good fortune, if you want to own horses down the road, so be it.”
Shah has a degree in electrical engineering from Bangalore University, a masters in computer engineering from Clemson University, and an MBA from George Washington University. He migrated to the US where he founded CalNet, a company that provides intelligence analysis and other services to the US government.
When he later established his racing operations, it was out of a love of horses: “Winning is not my game. It’s horseracing I look forward to, and if the winning comes as a result of racing, all the better. What I truly enjoy is my red, white, and blue silks out there running.”
Shah can be proud of Dortmund, who leaves a solid legacy, with eight wins, two seconds, and two thirds out of 16 starts, for total career earnings of $1.98 million. We look forward to Dortmund’s future progeny with much interest.
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Dr. Ortuoste is a California-based writer. Facebook: Gogirl Racing and Jenny Ortuoste, Twitter: @gogirlracing and @jennyortuoste, and Instagram: @jensdecember and @artuoste