06/22/2016 10:35AM

Champion Quarter Horse Moonist dies from colic


Moonist, the champion aged Quarter Horse of 2015, was euthanized late Tuesday after complications from colic, trainer John Cooper said on Wednesday.

Moonist was rated the nation’s leading older horse this year and was unbeaten in four starts, including the Los Alamitos Winter Championship in February. Moonist won a division of the Vessels Maturity trials at Los Alamitos on June 12 and would have been a strong favorite to win the final on July 3.

Cooper said that Moonist was “uneasy” on Tuesday afternoon, leading him to take the 5-year-old gelding to a nearby veterinarian clinic for observation. Initial tests did not reveal colic, Cooper said. It was not until Moonist displayed further discomfort that veterinarians opted to perform surgery and check internal organs, Cooper said.

At that point, Moonist had suffered internal damage and could not be saved, Cooper said.

Owned by Ron Hartley, Moonist won 24 of 34 starts and earned $878,468, racing exclusively at Los Alamitos. Moonist won four championship titles – as overall 3-year-old and 3-year-old gelding of 2014, and overall older horse and aged gelding of 2015.

By Separatist, Moonist won 10 stakes, including four derbies in 2014 – the El Primero Del Ano Derby in April, Governor’s Cup Derby in July, Golden State Derby in August, and Pacific Coast Quarter Horse Racing Association Breeders’ Derby in October. He was the first horse to win four derbies in a single year at Los Alamitos.

As a 4-year-old in 2015, Moonist won five stakes, including the Go Man Go Handicap and Los Alamitos Championship. He was second in the Champion of Champions to eventual world champion Heza Dasha Fire last December in his final loss.


Luis Prieto Zamudio 8 months ago
Rip, Moonist.
Mary Campbell More than 1 year ago
So sad :( He was one of my favorites. Was looking forward to him racing again.
Bev Armbruster More than 1 year ago
Sad! R.I.P. Race through the sky now boy!
Rhonda Hill More than 1 year ago
Rest In Peace.
Free at last.
Tammy Fese More than 1 year ago
Just heart broken.  
Luis Prieto Zamudio 8 months ago
Quien ocupará su lugar en The Champion Of Champions?
Maya Joffe More than 1 year ago
this is heartbreaking news... :(

RIP Moonist...and condolences to his connections
Mark W. More than 1 year ago
So quick, so unexpected and so very tragic.
Eva Anderson More than 1 year ago
I have chills all over, this is horrible, and so very tragic, such an incredible horse,my heart goes out the The Hartleys and to The Coopers.
Happy Harriet More than 1 year ago
Oh this is such balderdash - this horse could have been saved.  RUBBISH VET CARE and lack of careful observance on the part of the farm workers.  TOTAL TRAVESTY. 
Eva Anderson More than 1 year ago
Don't bash them that's not right , you don't have the details,
Bailey Gallison More than 1 year ago
He had an impaction, and from the sounds of it, in all likely hood ruptured his intestine. How many horses have you had rupture that you saved? None, it's fatal. Have some respect for his connections before you start pointing fingers.
Katrina Schaub More than 1 year ago
Were you there?!
Katrina Schaub More than 1 year ago
Were you there?!
Shanon Fizer More than 1 year ago
Get a life Happy Harriet. You obviously only seek to create contention.  You have no clue what really happened, so put a lid on your rubbish and curtail your travesty!
Charleen McManus More than 1 year ago

You have no idea what you are talking about HH.  I lost my open show horse in December, he was put down on the operating table because his colon ruptured. I wish you could stand in someone' shoes that has been through it. Moonist was awesome


Nelle White More than 1 year ago
tears in my eyes. Condolences to all his connections. He was a wonder.