02/27/2015 11:35AM

Stakes-winning sprinter Bern Identity retired

Barbara D. Livingston
Bern Identity, 5, has been retired after sustaining a fracture in the back of a knee.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Bern Identity has been retired after being injured in a training mishap, foiling the plans that trainer Kelly Breen and owners George and Lori Hall had for the 5-year-old horse.

Breen said Bern Identity was going through a routine gallop almost two weeks ago at the Palm Meadows training center when he “suddenly just fell down,” sustaining a fracture in the back of his right knee. The exercise rider was not seriously injured, and the horse will not require surgery.

“It’s a shame because we really thought the horse was in for a big year,” Breen said Thursday at Gulfstream Park.

From 13 career starts, Bern Identity won six times, including the Grade 2 Sanford as a 2-year-old in 2012 and four other ungraded stakes. He was being pointed to the Grade 3 Tom Fool, a six-furlong race next Saturday at Aqueduct, although Breen said he and the Halls were hoping to try him at longer distances as the year unfolded.

“We were going to stretch him out and shorten up Pants On Fire,” said Breen.

Bern Identity, a Kentucky-bred by Bernstein, earned $877,200. Breen said it has become too late for the horse to serve the 2015 breeding season, adding, “The injury concerned us enough that we thought we should hold off on that anyway.”

Pants On Fire, who has banked more than $1.4 million as a middle-distance specialist, is nearing his first start at 7 after four February works at Palm Meadows. “We’re not sure what kind of races we want to focus on now,” said Breen. “We were going to try to keep him and Bern Identity in separate categories.”

Also, Breen said that Encryption, who earned a career-high 104 Beyer Speed Figure in a Feb. 22 allowance, might race next at the Keeneland meet that starts April 3.