06/22/2007 12:00AM

Astra, top turf mare, euthanized


Astra, the multiple Grade 1-winning mare who won back-to-back runnings of the Beverly Hills Stakes in 2001 and 2002, was euthanized on June 12 because of complications from colic, according to newspaper reports. She was 11.

By Theatrical out of the Seattle Slew mare Savannah Slew, Astra was one of the top grass mares to race in 2001 and 2002 but was overshadowed somewhat by her stablemate, the dirt specialist Azeri, who was Horse of the Year in 2002. Both Astra and Azeri were bred by Allen Paulson and were owned by the Paulson Family Trust.

In addition to her two straight Beverly Hills wins, Astra won back-to-back runnings of the Grade 1 Santa Barbara Handicap in 2001 and 2002, and also won the 2002 Beverly D. Stakes, a Grade 1. She also scored in the 2000 and 2002 runnings of the Grade 1 Gamely Handicap.

For her career, Astra won 11 of 16 starts and retired with earnings of $1.3 million. According to reports, she has produced three foals, most recently an El Prado filly.