11/15/2010 6:45PM

Forever Together retired to Stone Farm

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Adam Coglianese/NYRA
Forever Together, Julien Leparoux up, wins the Diana in 2009, her second consecutive victory in the race.

LEXINGTON, Ky. - George Strawbridge's 2008 champion grass mare Forever Together has retired to Stone Farm in Kentucky and will be bred to Smart Strike in 2011.

The Paris, Ky., farm's owner, Arthur Hancock III, confirmed the 6-year-old mare's retirement and mating plans Monday.

Forever Together arrived at Stone Farm last Friday evening, a week after her sixth-place finish in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf, a race she won in 2008 and in which she had finished third in 2009. By Belong to Me, she leaves the racetrack with 9 victories from 26 starts, 5 second-place finishes, and 7 thirds. She earned $2,957,639.

Although she accomplished the most on turf, Forever Together was a successful dirt runner early in her career. She won her only race at 2 on the dirt, then came back at 3 to take the OBS Sprint Stakes and the Grade 2 Forward Gal score before finishing second in the Grade 2 Beaumont. Her next four starts were lackluster, but when she turned to the grass in the 2008 Reluctant Guest, she set off on course for her championship.

Trained by Jonathan Sheppard, Forever Together claimed the Grade 1 Diana in consecutive runnings in 2008 and 2009 and the Grade 1 First Lady Stakes in 2008. She attempted a third Diana this year but finished third in one of six Grade 1 placings.

"Jonathan let her down for a few days at the track," Hancock said. "Now she's turned out with a buddy in a big paddock. She's absolutely a magnificent-looking, beautiful mare. She ran a number of times and is sound. She's a nice addition to the farm."