Ben’s Cat, the nine-year-old winner of multiple graded stakes races, is taking the winter off, according to trainer King Leatherbury.

His last race was on November 24th, where he finished in seventh-place at the Fabulous Strike Handicap. In his career to date, Ben’s Cat has started 53 races, winning 30 of them and earning almost $2.5 million.

“He came out OK, but not good enough to run back again this year,” Leatherbury said. “I don’t want to waste his rest time, because if I run him one more time he’ll come back later in the spring.”

The exact resting location for Ben’s Cat will be a farm in Virginia owned by Stephanie Nixon. There was no official date mentioned by Leatherbury of when Ben’s Cat will return to the race track, but March 19th could be the date. Why that date in particular? It’s the date of the inaugural Ben’s Cat Stakes, which is a race for Maryland-breds held at Laurel Park.

“Wow, I didn’t know about that. Maybe I’ll have to crank him back up a little earlier to get ready for that,” replied Leatherbury upon being informed of the Ben’s Cat Stakes.

We mentioned earlier how Ben’s Cat ended his 2015 racing season on a sour note with a seventh-place finish at the Fabulous Strike Handicap, but he started it off with a bang. In his first race of the 2015 season he won the Jim McKay Turf Sprint Stakes. He also won his sixth-straight Mister Diz. Hopefully this resting period will prepare him for a winning 2016.

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