09/14/2014 7:41PM

Grade 1 winner Behrens dies at 20

Bill Denver/Equi-Photo
Behrens was a three-time Grade 1 winner, including the Gulfstream Park Handicap in 2000.

Multiple Grade 1 winner Behrens died Sunday following a brief illness at Old Friends at Cabin Creek, the Bobby Frankel division in Greenfield Center, N.Y. A son of Pleasant Colony, Behrens was 20.

"It won't be the same without Behrens," Cabin Creek owner and manager JoAnn Pepper said. "I'm glad to have known him."

The well-traveled Behrens won 9 of 27 career starts, winning three Grade 1 events and placing in nine others, and bankrolled $4,565,500 for owners William Clifton Jr., and Rudelein Stable and trainer James Bond.

The horse displayed his ability early in his career, winning the Dwyer Stakes and Pegasus Handicap, both Grade 2 events, and finishing second by a nose in the Travers Stakes as a 3-year-old. He blossomed as an older horse in 1999, winning the Grade 1 Gulfstream Park Handicap, Grade 1 Oaklawn Handicap, Grade 2 Massachusetts Handicap, and Grade 2 Suburban Handicap in succession before finishing second by a nose to champion Victory Gallop in the Grade 1 Whitney Handicap.

Behrens added another victory in the Gulfstream Park Handicap the following season before finishing second in the Dubai World Cup, the world's richest race.

Behrens entered stud at Darby Dan Farm near Lexington, Ky., in 2001 before moving to Victory Rose Farm near Vacaville, Calif., for the 2008 season. He is the sire of 103 winners who have earned more than $4.1 million to date, led by stakes winner Ocean Roll and stakes-placed winners Sporty Boy, Colony Queen, Sueno Del Mar, and Behrens Affair.

The stallion was pensioned to Old Friends at Cabin Creek in the summer of 2013. He will be buried at the farm.