05/02/2017 9:29AM

Irish War Cry to stand at Hill 'n' Dale upon retirement

Barbara D. Livingston
Irish War Cry, winner of the Wood Memorial, will stand at Hill 'n' Dale at the conclusion of his racing career.

Irish War Cry, a multiple Grade 2 winner and Kentucky Derby hopeful, will stand at Hill ‘n’ Dale Farm in Lexington, Ky., upon his retirement from racing.

The breeding rights for the 3-year-old son of Curlin were purchased by a diverse group including John G. Sikura of Hill ‘n’ Dale, Craig Bernick of Glen Hill Farm, SF Bloodstock, Colts Neck Stables, China Horse Club, Bobby Flay, Sol Kumin, and Vincent Viola.

Irish War Cry will continue to race as a sole-entity homebred for owner Isabelle De Tomaso and will remain under the shed row of trainer Graham Motion.

“Buying into a very good son of an elite sire appeals to everybody,” Sikura said. “The group is all familiar with each other, so there’s a comfort level that everybody’s in it together. We’re hopeful that he’ll run well on Saturday, and he’ll finish the year adding more and more achievements to his resume.”

Irish War Cry has won 4 of 5 career starts for earnings of $699,460. He most recently won the Grade 2 Wood Memorial Stakes at Aqueduct, following up on a win in the Grade 2 Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park earlier in the season and the Marylander Stakes at Laurel Park during his juvenile campaign.

The New Jersey-bred is out of the winning Polish Numbers mare Irish Sovereign, whose six foals to race are all winners. The colt is a half-brother to Grade 3-placed Irish Strait and stakes-placed Irish Politics.

“This is an emerging 3-year-old who’s continuing to flesh out and develop,” Sikura said. “He stands on his own merit. He’s conformationally very sound, moves well, and is an elegant, attractive horse. He fits the part as far as what you’d want to look for in a prospective stallion.”

Hill ‘n’ Dale’s stallion roster includes Curlin, sire of Irish War Cry, who stands for an advertised fee of $150,000. One of Curlin’s most prominent runners is Exaggerator, who finished second in last year’s Kentucky Derby before coming back to win the Preakness.

“We’re hopeful he’ll be able to pad his resume, and most importantly become a Grade 1 winner that can stand alongside Curlin,” Sikura said of Irish War Cry. “We’re in good hands with Graham Motion. He’s a skilled conditioner. He’ll have this horse ready to run.”