04/06/2003 11:00PM

Injury leads to death of Anees


LEXINGTON, Ky. - Anees, North America's champion 2-year-old and Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner of 1999, was euthanized Saturday due to complications from a broken pastern. The Unbridled horse was 6 and had been standing his third year at stud at Mill Ridge Farm in Lexington.

Anees broke his front left pastern in a paddock accident at Mill Ridge on March 31 after completing his morning breeding session. The fracture required surgical repair, and the horse shipped to Hagyard Davidson McGee veterinary clinic in Lexington for the procedure. Dr. Robert Hunt performed the operation to insert a screw in the pastern, shore up the joint with wire, and insert two metal rods through the cannon bone to help bear the weight of the horse's body and the leg cast.

The horse appeared to be doing well in recovery with the aid of a body sling, but ultimately the two rods in his cannon bone broke. That resulted in pain for the horse, and Mill Ridge decided to euthanize, according to farm representative Bayne Welker Jr.

The late Prince Ahmed Salman's The Thoroughbred Corporation bought Anees, whose name means "good company" in Arabic, for $330,000 at the 1998 Keeneland September yearling sale Anees went on to win 2 of 7 races in a career abbreviated by ankle problems. His sole stakes victory came in the 1999 Breeders' Cup Juvenile at Gulfstream. In that race, Anees came from last of 14 early to beat Chief Seattle by 2 1/2 lengths. That performance clinched Anees's divisional title in a year in which he also finished third in the Grade 2 Norfolk Stakes. Anees made just three starts the following season, finishing third in the Grade 2 San Felipe in his best race that year. He retired with a lifetime record of 7-2-0-2 and $699,200 in earnings.

Anees, a son of the unraced Alydar mare Ivory Idol, stood for $15,000 at Mill Ridge. His first foals are yearlings this year. Anees covered 29 mares this year, of which 17 are reported to be in foal.

"Even though he was 2-year-old champion, the foals he was throwing had a lot of Unbridled in them," said Welker. "They were longer, more classic horses, who look like they'll be better at 3 than at 2. I think his breeding career will be like his racing career was: short and leaving us to wonder how good he really was."