Eclipse Champion Improbable Euthanized

March 17, 2024

Improbable in a work at Oaklawn Park in April 2020. (Coady Photography)

‘It Is Tragic’: WinStar Farm Stallion Improbable Euthanized At Age 8

WinStar Farm Press Release

VERSAILLES, Ky.—WinStar Farm stallion Improbable, Eclipse champion older male of 2020, was euthanized late last night at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital in Lexington, Ky., after suffering from ataxia behind yesterday morning, the farm announced today.

“He was sent to Rood and Riddle yesterday morning to determine the exact cause of the ataxia,” said Elliott Walden, president, CEO, and racing manager of WinStar Farm. “He was responding well to treatment, but went to lie down in his stall, and fell awkwardly. As a result, he broke his right tibia, which could not be repaired.”

A son of City Zip, Improbable proved to be a rare talent. He won three consecutive Grade 1 races in 2020, taking the Grade 1 Hollywood Gold Cup at Santa Anita, the historic G1 Whitney Stakes at Saratoga, and the G1 Awesome Again Stakes at Santa Anita en route to champion older male honors at season’s end.

Undefeated at two, Improbable was a five-length winner of the 2018 G1 Los Alamitos Futurity, getting 1 1/16 miles in 1:41.18, the fastest time of that race in over a decade. A stakes winner each season from two to four, Improbable concluded his stellar career with a runner-up finish in the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic in 2020. All told, he won seven starts, six of them stakes, and earned $2,729,520 for owners WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, and SF Racing.

Improbable. (Photo courtesy of WinStar Farm)
Improbable. (Photo courtesy of WinStar Farm)

“These horses are our life, and we work every day to take care of them the best way we know how,” said Dr. Natanya Nieman, general manager and resident veterinarian at WinStar Farm. “The whole team is reeling. Improbable gave us many great moments to share with our partners, our team, and the whole racing community. It is tragic.”

Bred in Kentucky by St. George Farm and G. Watts Humphrey Jr., Improbable was acquired by Maverick Racing and China Horse Club for $200,000 out of the Taylor Made Sales Agency consignment at the 2017 Keeneland September Sale. Improbable was out of the A.P. Indy mare Rare Event. The 8-year-old stallion was bred to 329 mares in his first two books and is represented by his initial crop of 2-year-olds this year.

@jonathanstettin #2 Ettalusive ran big to finish 2nd in Gulf Stream 3rd 16-1

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