California Chrome’s Racing Career comes to a Close
The sensational racing career of California Chrome came to a close Saturday. The world’s richest race did not go as planned for the two time Horse of the Year and 2014 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner. But the interest in racing and specifically the $12 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational received great exposure and coverage thanks to the credentials and career of California Chrome.
The credentials of California Chrome are most credible. In 27 starts, he won 16 times. He added 4 second place showing and one third place finish. He won seven Grade I races and was victorious on ten different race tracks including one in Dubai. His accumulated earnings of $14,752,650 makes him the all-time leading money earner in North America.
Race fans embraced California Chrome, as he developed a legion of followers during his career. In today’s age with more race horses retiring and sent to the breeding shed to earn more money for their connections, we were given a gift with California Chrome continuing to race as a 6-year-old.
Following six straight wins to start the 2016 season, California Chrome came up just short in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. But his connections rewarding racing fans and specifically the ‘Chromies’ with a final race in 2016 at his home track, Los Alamitos. And California Chrome gave his most devoted fans one final victory, by 12 lengths in the Winter Challenge Stakes.
The buildup to the Pegasus World Cup nearly 6 weeks later was great for racing. But the end of an era is one that should be celebrated for California Chrome.
California Chrome is completed booked for the 2017 breeding season, and he was shipped to Kentucky this week and will start test breeding immediately. California Chrome is commanding a fee of $40,000, and perhaps we’ll be lucky enough to see this son of Lucky Pulpit produce another great champion. Regardless, California Chrome, purchased for $10,500, is a symbol of dreams realized and a journey that should be celebrated.