07/25/2016 10:24AM

Grade 1 winner Rachel's Valentina retired

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Barbara D. Livingston
Rachel's Valentina won last year's Grade 1 Spinaway Stakes.

Grade 1 winner Rachel's Valentina, the only daughter of 2009 Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra, has been retired from racing, owner-breeder Barbara Banke’s Stonestreet Farm announced Sunday.

“We want to announce that Rachel’s Valentina will now retire from racing sound and injury-free,” the farm posted on its blog. “We look forward to sharing her babies with you, carrying on the legacy of ‘Rachel the Great.’ ”

Rachel's Valentina, by Bernardini, won two of three starts last year as a juvenile for Stonestreet and trainer Todd Pletcher. Following her debut score at Saratoga, she earned her signature victory in the Grade 1 Spinaway Stakes before finishing second to the unbeaten champion Songbird in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies.

Rachel's Valentina returned to the races five months later to finish second to Weep No More in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes at Keeneland. She was soundly beaten as the favorite in her last two outings, finishing sixth in the Kentucky Oaks and fifth in the Grade 1 Mother Goose Stakes.

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Rachel's Valentina was the second foal out of Rachel Alexandra, who will be inducted into the racing Hall of Fame next month in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. The mare experienced severe complications following the filly’s birth, resulting in surgery and a lengthy clinic stay before she recovered and returned home to Stonestreet Farm in Lexington, Ky.

Banke has said the champion will not be bred again. The mare’s full sister, Samantha Nicole, is also part of Stonestreet’s broodmare band and was covered by Bernardini this year for her first foal.

Rachel Alexandra's only other foal is Jess's Dream, a 4-year-old son of Curlin who won his only start last summer at Saratoga. Plagued by minor physical ailments throughout his career, he is now back in training with Kiaran McLaughlin, most recently breezing July 12 at Belmont.

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Scott Scheib 11 months ago
More money for all of her connections at the breeding shed at this point.  Keep an eye out for her foals in 3-4 years. Solid pedigree.
Jason Rothstein 11 months ago
She was a nice 2 year old, but don't compare her to her mother, who had in my opinion the greatest 3 year old filly season of all time
Darrell Peck 11 months ago
With a fully recovered Songbird Rachel was losing the limelight.  She was slowly loosing her form like her mother did in her latter stages of a four year old.  She really wowed me as a two year old and songbird was just a better horse in the Juvenile or else she would have been a eclipse  winner
Jamie Murphy 11 months ago
first of all valentina barely had any form. to compare the two is asinine.
Darrell Peck 11 months ago
.  When you make a statement and say first of all and only make one comment, that is asinine. R.V. won a grade one race and ran second in the Breeders cup juvenile, that is have form.  I'm not really sure you have a point or at least you are not very articulate in making one.   There really isn't any debate that she had a great 2 year old run but fizzled out as a three year old and that's okay.