Claiborne stallion Arch dead at age 21

Debbie Hancock gave Arch a treat outside his barn at Churchill Downs on Nov. 5, 1998.
Debbie Hancock gave Arch a treat outside his barn at Churchill Downs on Nov. 5, 1998. Herald-Leader

Arch, the sire of 11 Grade I winners and four champions, died Wednesday of an apparent heart attack, according to Bernie Sams of Claiborne Farm, which stood the 21-year-old son of Kris S.

Out of the Danzig mare Aurora, Arch was a stalwart of success for Claiborne. He sired 58 stakes winners, 34 graded stakes winners, 11 Grade I winners, and four champions during his stud career, which began in 1999. His total progeny earnings were over $53 million.

Arch’s most notable offspring is champion and fellow Claiborne sire Blame, a three-time Grade I winner and the spoiler of Zenyatta’s historic winning streak in the 2010 Breeders’ Cup Classic.

Additionally, Arch sired Grade I winners, Archarcharch, Pine Island, Hymn Book, Love Theway Youare, and Grand Arch.

“We are saddened by the loss of Arch,” Sams said. “He was a classy stallion who had the ability to sire top class horses that performed well both on the track and in the auction ring.”

Arch’s influence as a sire extended well beyond the United States, as evidenced by the success of English champion, Les Arcs; Canadian champion and Horse of the Year, Arravale; and three-time South African sprint champion, Overarching.

Additionally, Arch is the broodmare sire of champion and Ashford Stud stallion Uncle Mo, the leading freshman sire for 2015.

On the track, Arch won five times for his owners, Adele Dilschneider and Claiborne Farm, and was on the board in six of seven career starts. A winner in his 2-year-old debut at Keeneland, he returned the following year with decisive victories in the 1998 Grade I Super Derby and a track-record-setting performance in the Grade III Fayette Stakes at Keeneland, going 1  3/16 miles in 1:53.87.

Arch was the leading sire at this year’s Keeneland January Sale by both gross and average, highlighted by the $700,000 sale topper. He was also the sale’s leading covering sire.

Arch stood for a fee of $40,000 at the time of his death.

Alicia Wincze Hughes: 859-231-1676, @horseracinghl

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