Lexington, Ky., March 12, 2010 -- One year after the death of Kentucky Derby winner Alysheba, the Kentucky Horse Park will unveil a memorial statue at his grave.
The famous son of Alydar had resided at the park for only five months when he was euthanized March 27, 2009, as a result of an accidental fall. The 25-year-old stallion was buried at the Hall of Champions.
The public is invited to the statue unveiling on April 16 at 2 p.m.
The bronze statue was commissioned by Clarence Scharbauer III of Midland, Texas, whose family owned Alysheba when he was racing. Sculpted by renowned artist Shelley Hunter, it was conceived as a complementary piece to the John Henry memorial statue adjacent to it, which Hunter also created. The two statues will form an impressive honor guard for the Hall of Champions.
Before coming to the Kentucky Horse Park, Alysheba spent the previous eight years in the royal stables of His Majesty King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, after standing his first years at stud at William S. Farish's Lane's End Farm in Versailles, Ky. Known on the track as "America's horse," he was sent to the Kentucky Horse Park as a gift from His Majesty to the American people in October 2008.
Bred by Preston Madden at Hamburg Place in Lexington, Alysheba (Alydar-Bel Sheba, by Lt. Stevens) was sold as a yearling to Dorothy and Pam Scharbauer who campaigned him under the guidance of Hall of Fame trainer Jack Van Berg.
Alysheba won the 1987 Kentucky Derby (G1), Preakness Stakes (G1), Super Derby (G1) and an Eclipse Award as Champion three-year-old colt. As a four-year-old, he was even better, winning six Grade 1 stakes: the Strub Stakes, Santa Anita Handicap, Iselin Handicap, Woodward Stakes, Meadowlands Cup and the Breeders' Cup Classic. He was ridden in 17 consecutive starts by Hall of Fame?jockey Chris McCarron.
Alysheba is listed at No. 42 on The Blood-Horse magazine's list of the Top 100 U.S. Racehorses of the 20th Century, one notch above Kentucky Derby winner Northern Dancer.
His career highlights also included Horse of the Year honors and track records for 11/4 miles at Belmont and The Meadowlands.? Along the way, he defeated Risen Star, Forty Niner, Bet Twice, Seeking the Gold, and Kentucky Derby winner Ferdinand. Until two-time Horse of the Year Cigar came along, Alysheba was the world's richest Thoroughbred, with earnings of $6,679,242.
For more information, call 859-233-4303. The unveiling is included with park admission.