This is not my normal kind of post but I thought I’d do something different.
A couple days ago, a friend of mine posted on facebook asking if anyone knew what happened to Gentlemen (1993).
For those who may not know, Gentlemen was a champion 3-year-old in Argentina before coming to the US. In total, he won more than 3.6 million dollars on 2 continents. He was a winner of multiple Grade 1 stakes including the Pimlico Special, the Hollywood Gold Cup, and the Pacific Classic. In the US, he was trained by Richard Mandella and ridden by Gary Stevens. He was, arguably, one of the best racehorses of his generation.
Following his retirement on the track, he was less successful as a stud. He started off at Walmac in Lexington, KY before ending up at Elite Thoroughbreds in Folsom, LA with a stud fee of $1500. He was last bred in 2011. He was never heard from again.
Some sleuthing thanks to some wonderful friends ultimately found that Gentlemen died sometime between 2011 and 2012 with no fanfare at Trader’s Rest Farm in Carencro, LA. His death was never reported to the Jockey Club (I reached out, they confirmed that they had no death record).
A horse that won over $3.6 million was just forgotten. He never received any accolades or tributes or memories. He received nothing.
I made 2 small donations in his honor last night. It wasn’t much, but it was something.
To Gentlemen, I won’t forget you. You ran with a great generation. You were one of the greatest. I just wish he had been able to spend his final years at a place like Old Friends. I wish he hadn’t fallen through the cracks.