03/13/2013 4:36PM

Event of the Year, Grade 2 winner and sire, dies at 17


Event of the Year, a multiple Grade 2 winner and sire, died from complications related to colic in January 2012 in Venezuela at age 17, the Blood-Horse reports.

Homebred by John and Betty Mabee’s Golden Eagle Farm and trained by Jerry Hollendorfer, the son of Seattle Slew established himself as one of the favorites on the 1998 Kentucky Derby trail on the strength of his five-length victory in the Grade 2 Jim Beam Stakes at Turfway Park. However, he was withdrawn from Derby contention before the race after suffering a fractured right knee during training.

Event of the Year recovered by the end of the year, and finished third in the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes for trainer Richard Mandella. He continued to compete at a high level in his 4-year-old season, winning the Grade 2 Strub Stakes and finishing second in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap and the Grade 2 San Fernando Breeders’ Cup Stakes.

Event of the Year retired in his third season with five wins in nine races, also including a score in the Grade 3 El Camino Real Derby, for lifetime earnings of $1,095,200.

From 11 crops of racing age, Event of the Year has sired 138 winners for combined progeny earnings of $7,826,641. His leading runners include Grade 1-placed stakes winner Thrilling Victory and stakes winners Kalookan Year, Follow the Rainbow, and Sterling Cat.