06/01/2012 2:33PM

Rapid Redux settles in at Old Friends

Barbara D. Livingston
Record-breaking 6-year-old gelding Rapid Redux will spend his retirement days at Old Friends in Kentucky.

Rapid Redux, the 6-year-old gelding who holds the modern United States record of 22 consecutive wins, received an official welcome Friday at the Old Friends retirement haven in Georgetown, Ky.

Owner Robert Cole Jr., has pensioned the chestnut Rapid Redux there. Rapid Redux has a paddock across from 1988 sprint champion Gulch. Another close neighbor is dual Grade 1 winner Afternoon Deelites.

Morrissey’s Horse Pullmans brought Rapid Redux, free of charge, to Old Friends from his trainer David Wells’s farm near Penn National Race Course in central Pennsylvania on Wednesday.

“After he got here I called David to tell him that Rapid Redux’s new best friend was Gulch,” said Old Friends founder Michael Blowen. “I said, ‘Did you ever think your horse would be friends with Gulch?’ ”

Rapid Redux last ran, and won his 22nd consecutive race, on Jan. 4 at Laurel Park. He has won 28 races from 42 starts for earnings totaling $361,609. He’s also stakes-placed, thanks to a third in Monmouth’s Grade 3 Tyro Stakes in 2008. His record-breaking run made Rapid Redux a fan favorite. In 2011, he received a Special Eclipse Award for his achievements on the track. He also garnered a Secretariat “Vox Populi” Award, determined by popular vote, a selection committee, and Secretariat’s owner and breeder Penny Chenery.

“Rapid Redux was just a total professional,” Blowen said. “He hasn’t given us a moment of grief. He got off the trailer, went in his stall, ate some hay, drank some water, and then spent about an hour looking out at [farm mascot and miniature horse-Shetland pony cross] Little Silver Charm, probably wondering what the heck he was!”

Old Friends is open daily to fans and offers guided tours at 10 a.m., 1 p.m., and 2 p.m. For more information about the facility, call (502) 863-1775.