10/12/2011 3:46PM

Santa Anita: Crown of Thorns retired

Benoit & Associates
Crown of Thorns, with Tyler Baze riding, wins the Mervyn LeRoy.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Crown of Thorns, a two-time stakes winner who was second in the 2009 Breeders’ Cup Sprint, has been retired and will stand at stud at Spendthrift Farm in Kentucky in 2012, trainer Richard Mandella said.

Crown of Thorns finished fourth in his final race, the Grade 2 Oak Tree Mile on turf at Santa Anita last Saturday. A 6-year-old horse by Repent, Crown of Thorns won 3 of 13 starts and $821,693 in a career that spanned five racing seasons.

Crown of Thorns was plagued by minor ailments at times. Mandella said the decision to retire Crown of Thorns was reached after he spent time in Kentucky earlier this week with owner B. Wayne Hughes, who owns Spendthrift.

“We agreed we’ve milked it as far as we should,” Mandella said. “He’s got a nagging knee problem. They’re making plans for his breeding career.

“He was kind of a special horse. He had such potential. When you led him over there, he gave you what he had.”

Crown of Thorns won the Grade 2 Robert Lewis Stakes in February 2008, but did not start again that year. At 4 in 2009, he was second in the Grade 1 Ancient Title Stakes and was beaten a nose by Dancing in Silks in the BC Sprint at Santa Anita. Last year, Crown of Thorns was second in the Grade 1 Goodwood Stakes at Hollywood Park but was scratched from the BC Dirt Mile at Churchill Downs after the knee problem resurfaced.

Earlier this season, Crown of Thorns won the Grade 2 Mervyn LeRoy Handicap over 1 1/16 miles at Hollywood Park, his final career victory.

◗ Charm the Maker, third in the Grade 1 Oak Leaf Stakes in her stakes debut on Oct. 1, will not start in the BC Juvenile Fillies at Churchill Downs on Nov. 4, trainer Ron McAnally said on Wednesday.

McAnally said that Charm the Maker will be pointed for stakes at Hollywood Park this fall, although no plans have been made. “We’re just taking our time with her,” he said.

Wednesday at Santa Anita, Charm the Maker worked a half-mile in 50 seconds.