10/07/2014 9:40AM

French classic winner Soviet Star dies at age 30


Soviet Star, a French classic winner and prominent sire, died Tuesday at Ballylinch Stud in Co. Kilkenny, Ireland, Racing Post reports.

The 30-year-old son of Nureyev was bred in Kentucky by Kinderhill Farm and sold as a weanling for $310,000 at the 1984 Keeneland November breeding stock sale. Soviet Star was sent to the European shedrow of trainer Andre Fabre for Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum, where he raced in England and France.

Soviet Star won eight of 14 lifetime starts over three seasons of racing for earnings of $1,016,931. In England, he won the Group 1 Sussex Stakes and July Cup, as well as the Group 2 Forte Mile, while in France, Soviet Star was victorious in the French Two Thousand Guineas, the Group 1 Prix du Moulin de Longchamp and Prix de la Foret, and the Group 3 Prix de Fountainbleu.

Upon his retirement, Soviet Star was sent to Sheikh Mohammed’s Dalham Stud in Ireland, where he spent six seasons covering a limited number of mares before being sold to stand in Japan. After proving himself to be a successful sire of runners, Soviet Star was purchased by Ballylynch Stud, where he stood for the remainder of his career.

While Soviet Star’s workload was lessened greatly in his later years, he was never fully pensioned. He covered one mare during the 2014 breeding season, and she is in foal.

In total, Soviet Star has sired 23 crops of racing age, with 23 graded/group states winners and combined progeny earnings of over $52 million. His runners are led by Australian champion Starcraft, Group 1 winners Pressing, Eva’s Request, Ashkalani, Russian Pearl, Soviet Line, and Starborough, and Grade/Group 2 winners Freedom Cry, Bon Point, Boris de Deauville, Democratic Deficit and Volochine.

Soviet Star was out of the stakes-placed Venture mare Veruschka, making him a half brother to Grade 1 winner The Very One and French Group 2-placed stakes winner Lyphka.