01/13/2014 12:52PM

Dancin Renee, New York-bred Horse of the Year, dies at Old Friends


Dancin Renee, New York’s Horse of the Year in 1997, was euthanized following a battle with laminitis Jan. 11 at the Old Friends Thoroughbred retirement facility in Georgetown, Ky. The daughter of Distinctive Pro was 22.

"It's been a tough month," Old Friends president and founder Michael Blowen said in a release issued by the farm. "We lost [graded stakes winner] Patton and [turf champion] Sunshine Forever in the last week, and now Renee. I mourn the losses but thank all of their fans for their support-particularly the thoughtfulness of Jeanne Mirabito of Our Mims for sending a colorful bouquet of flowers in memory of Sunshine Forever.”

Dancin Renee, who raced as a homebred for Sanford Bacon, had resided at Old Friends since 2012.

"I don't know what to say," Bacon said. "Dancin Renee, who was named after my mother-in-law, a Ziegfeld girl, meant everything to us."

Dancin Renee won 14 of 21 starts over three seasons of racing, earning $490,258. As a 5-year-old in 1997, she won seven consecutive races, including the Grade 3 Honorable Miss Stakes, the Straight Deal Breeders’ Cup Handicap, the Berlo Handicap, the Endine Stakes, the Broadway Handicap, and the Regret Stakes to earn statebred Horse of the Year honors, as well as champion sprinter and champion older female.

As a broodmare, Dancin Renee produced five winners from six starters, including the Limehouse mare Risky Rachel, a homebred for Bacon who won the Minaret Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs on the day her dam died. It was Risky Rachel’s fifth career stakes victory.

Out of three-time New York Broodmare of the Year Lolli Lucka Lolli, Dancin Renee was a half-sister to multiple graded stakes winner and $2 million earner Say Florida Sandy.