Patricia and Roy Chapman, owners of Smarty Jones
Roy and Pat Chapman today announced that their 3-year-old phenomenon Smarty Jones has been found to have chronic bruising of the bottom of the cannon bone in all four fetlock joints and that they have made the decision to retire their colt.
"This is a fairly common injury in horses, caused by the wear and tear of racing," said trainer John Servis. "He would need three months rest before he should resume training. This would knock him out for the rest of the year."
"He'd start back in training about the time of the Breeders' Cup," said owner Roy Chapman. "If everything went right, he might make the Dubai World Cup, but he might not. That's just too many "if's" for a horse of this caliber, who has done so much and who has given us so much," said Chapman.
"After all he's done, I couldn't live with myself if I thought we were putting him in harm's way," said Pat Chapman. "He doesn't owe us anything, and we owe him a LOT."
Smarty Jones and Stewart Elliott head to the track for the Belmont Stakes.
"He had nine superb performances in eight months. It is this type of accumulated inflammation that causes all athletes to cycle in and out of peak form," said orthopedic equine surgeon Dr. Larry Bramlage, who consulted on the case.
Trainer John Servis
"I think the move he made in the Preakness was just a preview of things to come. Smarty Jones has responded to every challenge in his life with enthusiasm, talent and every fiber of his being. I think he'll make a great stallion." continued Servis.
A stud fee has not been set for Smarty Jones. "We just found this out and so we have not decided upon a stud fee, but we will do so shortly -- probably in the next two or three weeks," said Three Chimneys owner Robert Clay. "Smarty Jones will arrive at Three Chimneys in a few weeks, we will give him some time to settle in, and will advise the public when he's ready for visitors," said Clay.
Smarty Jones works out at Philadelphia Park. Courtesy of Nancy Rokos.
Smarty Jones has earned $7,613,155, making him the Fourth Richest Racehorse in North American racing history, and won eight of his nine career starts, beginning with his racetrack debut last November. He is one of only three undefeated winners of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness and fell a length short of becoming the second undefeated Triple Crown winner in history when Birdstone won the Belmont S.-G1 on June 5. He won his two starts at age 2 by a combined 22 and three-quarter lengths and his eight career wins, ranging from six furlongs to a mile and a quarter, were by an average of almost six lengths.
"I think ten years from now we'll be saying that Smarty Jones was a great one on the track and a great one in the breeding shed," said Three Chimneys President Dan Rosenberg. "He's by a world-record-setting miler by Gone West and he is directly descended from La Troienne. He became America's Horse with his speed, charisma and way of overcoming the odds. Now it's Three Chimneys' turn to give Smarty Jones every chance to show what he can do," said Rosenberg.
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