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American Pharoah Grandsire Dies
Champion US stallion Empire Maker (Unbridled-Toussaud, by El Gran Senor) has passed away at Gainesway Farm (see below promotion) in Kentucky. The sire of 12 Grade 1 winners and grandsire of Triple Crown winner American Pharaoh succumbed, aged 20, to a rare disease that affected his immune system. “He was the epitome of class and quality,” said Antony Beck, CEO of Gainesway. “I have never been involved with a stallion that possessed a better disposition. His impact on the breed has been significant, particularly producing very sound stock. He will be missed by all of us at Gainesway.” Trained by Bobby Frankel, Empire Maker’s sparkling career preceded that of a champion sire, winning three Gr1s as a 3YO - the Belmont Stakes, Florida Derby and the Wood Memorial - and finishing runner-up in the Kentucky Derby in the same season. horseracingnation.com recounted a stallion career that began at Juddmonte, then a stint in Japan prior to returning to the US at Gainesway in partnership with Don Alberto Stable. Among Empire Maker’s star progeny were champion Royal Delta, Kentucky Derby winner Always Dreaming, classic-placed Bodemeister and Pioneerof the Nile (sire of American Pharoah). He also had an important influence as a broodmare sire, and was represented at 2019’s Keeneland September Yearling Sale by a $2 million filly out of Lady Pewitt.