Multiple graded stakes winner and millionaire Sharp Samurai has been retired from racing. According to trainer Mark Glatt, the 7-year-old gelded son of First Samurai will make his new home at Old Friends Farm in Georgetown, Ky., where he will live out his days in the company of many of the best racehorses in recent memory.
"He had some things nagging at him and with his age, we felt he needed some time off," said Glatt. "We then felt like by the time he took some time off again and then we brought him back that he would be even older and myself along with the ownership group wouldn't be interested in running him in anything but in stakes competition or at a high level. We didn't want to bring him back to be a claiming horse or an allowance horse. We felt like Father Time had caught up with him a little bit and that it was the right decision to make. He had recently gone over $1 million in career earnings and we felt like he'd done enough."
Bred in Kentucky by Cudney Stables out of the Street Cry mare Secret Wish, Sharp Samurai was purchased as a yearling by Glatt for $85,000 from the Glennwood Farm consignment to the 2015 Keeneland September Yearling Sale. Owned in partnership by Rancho Temescal, Red Baron's Barn, and Glatt, he broke through at the graded level at 3, winning the La Jolla Handicap (G3T), Del Mar Derby (G2T), and Twilight Derby (G2T) in succession.
While his last win would come at 4 in the City of Hope Mile Stakes (G2T), he would continue to perform consistently throughout the conclusion of his career. Sharp Samurai hit the board in all five of his final career starts in 2020, including a runner-up finish behind Maximum Security in the TVG Pacific Classic Stakes (G1). His final performance came in November in the Big Ass Fans Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (G1), where he ran third behind recent Pegasus World Cup Invitational Stakes (G1) winner Knicks Go. He was slated to make an appearance in the San Antonio Stakes (G2) in December, but was scratched.
Sharp Samurai retires with an 8-6-3 record from 23 starts and $1,111,270 in earnings.
"We will miss him," said Glatt. "I bought him as a yearling so I've had him in the barn for some time now. Certainly, he will be a difficult horse to replace as far as what he accomplished on the track and his personality—he's a cool dude. I won't really be able to replace him but hopefully we will find some others that can run similar to him and that try as hard as he does. He showed up for almost all of his races and he gave a very good account of himself. He deserves to have a nice retirement and a nice place to live out his life. It will be nice for his fans to be able to see him. We go to Kentucky often enough for sales that we will be able to stop in and see him as well."