WinStar Farm has entered into an agreement to acquire the breeding rights to Grade I Santa Anita Derby winner and 2016 Kentucky Derby contender Exaggerator.
“We’re very excited to be able to add a top son of Curlin to our future stallion roster,” WinStar Farm president Elliott Walden said in a release. “Exaggerator has been among the best of his class for two seasons now. I love his consistency, his 2-year-old form, and his ability to stretch out and win the Santa Anita Derby. He’s won at four different racetracks, east coast, west coast, it doesn’t matter. Exaggerator is an extreme racehorse, and, physically, he’s absolutely beautiful.”
Exaggerator will continue to be campaigned by owners Big Chief Racing, LLC, Head of Plains Partners LLC, Rocker O Ranch, LLC et al and trainer Keith Desormeaux, and at the conclusion of his racing career he will retire to WinStar Farm to take up stud duty.
By Horse of the Year Curlin, Exaggerator scored his biggest victory to date earlier this month with an emphatic 6 ¼-length romp in the $1 million Santa Anita Derby, stamping himself as one of the leading contenders for the Kentucky Derby on May 7th.
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Exaggerator was one of the most accomplished juveniles of his crop a year ago, earning just shy of a million dollars with marquee victories in the Grade II Saratoga Special and Grade III, $1 million Delta Downs Jackpot Stakes. He was also runner-up in the Grade I Breeders’ Futurity and finished fourth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Keeneland, beaten just three lengths.
This year, Exaggerator finished second to unbeaten juvenile champion Nyquist in the Grade II San Vicente Stakes at Santa Anita in his seasonal debut, and was third in the Grade II San Felipe Stakes. The striking dark bay colt put it all together in the Santa Anita Derby, setting him up for the Triple Crown run ahead.
An earner of $1,671,120 to date, Exaggerator owns four wins and three other placings from nine career starts. He is out of the Vindication mare Dawn Raid, a stakes-placed 2-year-old performer herself and half-sister to Canadian champion Embur’s Song.
Exaggerator is set to fly to Churchill Downs from his Santa Anita base on Tuesday, and he’s scheduled to have his final pre-Derby breeze over the track at Churchill this Saturday.
Upon retirement to stud, Exaggerator will be syndicated by WinStar.