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People Top 5
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- October 23, 1989
- Vol. 32
- No. 17
Secretariat Leaves the World Behind One Last Time
Earlier this month, suffering from a painful hoof inflammation, Secretariat was humanely destroyed at 19 at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Ky. He was born at Meadow Stud, the stable founded by C.T. Chenery, and in 1972 became the only two-year-old ever named Horse of the Year. When Chenery died a year later, his daughter Penny was faced with an enormous inheritance tax, but Secretariat came to the rescue: Penny syndicated him in return for a then record $6.08 million and kept her stable. Secretariat was retired at Claiborne after his triumphant '73 season.
Though Secretariat's career at stud was not unsuccessful, none of his 507 offspring came close to matching his record. Some critics carped that he was not a great sire, since he failed to duplicate himself. But surely they asked the impossible, for that was a task for the gods.
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