04/04/2013 2:05PM

Montbrook pensioned in Florida


Prominent Florida stallion Montbrook, sire of champion sprinter Big Drama, has been pensioned from stud duty due to declining fertility.

The 23-year-old Buckaroo horse will live out his retirement at J. Michael O'Farrell Jr.'s Ocala Stud. Montbrook, the state's leading sire in 2002, 2003, 2008, and 2009, was born, raised, and stood his entire stud career at the Ocala, Fla., facility.

“Montbrook has been a flagship stallion whose contributions have been significant, not only to Ocala Stud but also the Florida breeding industry,” said O’Farrell. “We bred him, sold him as a 2-year-old, and were lucky enough to buy him back after his racing career to stand him, so he’s a special horse to us.

Montbrook has only gotten a handful of mares in foal from several dozen covered thus far this breeding season.

"His fertility has reached a point that the humane thing to do is to retire him, and allow Montbrook to happily live out his life," O'Farrell said. "I believe his influence on racing will continue to carry on for many years through his sons at stud and daughters in many broodmare bands around the country.

From 16 crops of racing age, including his current juveniles, Montbrook is the sire of 454 winners, including 47 stakes winners, for total progeny earnings of $42,196,807.

His most accomplished runner was Big Drama, who earned the Eclipse Award as champion male sprinter in 2010, when he capped his campaign with a victory in the Breeders' Cup Sprint at Churchill Downs. The multiple track record-setter won 10 stakes during his career, retiring to Hallmarc Stallions at Stonewall Farm in Ocala in late 2011 with earnings of $2,743,060.

Montbrook was represented by another champion on the track in Group 1 winner Monteration, Puerto Rico's champion imported 3-year-old old of 2001. The stallion also produced Grade 1 winners Outofthebox and Trust N Luck, as well as Grade 2 winners Tackleberry, Shake You Down, and Shadowbdancing.

Montbrook, who Ocala Stud sold for $260,000 at the 1992 Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's February select 2-year-olds in training sale, captured five of his eight career starts, all as a 3-year-old in 1993, for earnings of $373,728. His four stakes victories included the Grade 3 Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash Stakes and the Grade 3 Riva Ridge Stakes.

Montbrook, out of the winning Jet Diplomacy mare Secret Papers, is a half-brother to Grade 1-placed stakes winner Garden Gal.