‘Pioneerof the Nile’ Who Took 2nd At 2009 KY Derby, Sired Triple Crown Champ American Pharoah, Dies Suddenly At 13

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VERSAILLES, KY. (THECOUNT) — Pioneerof the Nile, a thoroughbred racehorse who was the second-place finisher in the 2009 Kentucky Derby, has died suddenly in Kentucky.

Empire Maker–Star of Goshen, by Lord At War {Arg}, a multiple Grade I winner and star stallion, perhaps best known for siring 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, has died suddenly at the age of 13, WinStar Farm announced.


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Nile also sied 2016 Champion 2-Year-Old Colt Classic Empire.

According to the farm, the stud was being bred with a mare Monday morning when he started acting uncomfortable once he was back in his stall. He was en route to the clinic when he died.

“We are all extremely saddened by the loss of Pioneerof the Nile,” said WinStar Farm’s Elliott Walden. “He was a superior physical specimen, a Triple Crown Sire, and a unique personality. All of us at WinStar are heartbroken,” source

Bred and owned by Zayat Stables during his racing career, Pioneerof the Nile won both the GI CashCall Futurity and GI Santa Anita Derby and was runner-up in the 2009 GI Kentucky Derby. He entered stud at Vinery in 2010 and spent three years there before transferring to WinStar in 2013.

Geo quick facts: Versailles is a home rule-class city in Woodford County, Kentucky, United States and is located near Lexington. It is part of the Lexington-Fayette Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 8,568 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Woodford County – Wikipedia.

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  • Filly

    Bred to death