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Monday, October 27
2002 Breeders' Cup Classic winner Volponi retired




NEW YORK - Volponi, winner of the Breeders' Cup Classic in 2002, has been retired from racing and will stand in 2004 at an undisclosed farm in Kentucky, trainer and part-owner P.G. Johnson said on Monday.

Volponi, by Cryptoclearance out of the Sir Harry Lewis mare Prom Knight, retires with a career record of 7 wins in 31 starts and $3.2 million in earnings. His biggest win was the 2002 Classic, in which he scored by a record 6 1/2 lengths at 43.50-1.

Johnson, who owns Volponi with his family and Spruce Pond Stable, said that veterinarians were performing blood tests and physical examinations on Volponi at Belmont Park on Monday as part of closing a deal to stand the 5-year-old horse at stud. Amherst Stable - the Johnson family - and Spruce Pond will retain 10 percent of the horse as part of the deal, Johnson said, but he declined to name the purchaser until the deal closed.

Volponi was also bred by the Johnson family. The partnership includes Johnson, his wife, Mary Kay, and his daughters, Kathy and Karen.

Johnson said that he had some regrets retiring the horse because of the impact Volponi had on his family. "It was really great, a lot of fun," Johnson said. "It lifted everybody up. The financial part was great, sure, but having him in the family, that was the really great part about it."

Volponi's final year of racing was marked by a string of second-place finishes in graded stakes races in New York. In his final start, Saturday's Breeders' Cup Classic, Volponi finished last of 10, the worst finish of his career. The horse had finished out of the money in only six previous starts, and four of those were fourth-place finishes.

Clement praises Dynever

Trainer Christophe Clement was delighted with Dynever's third-place finish in Saturday's $4 million Breeders' Cup Classic at Santa Anita, but not the least bit surprised by the solid effort from the 3-year-old. Dynever, who was beaten 2 1/4 lengths by the winner, Pleasantly Perfect, finished ahead of the only other 3-year-olds in the Classic field, Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Funny Cide and Travers and Super Derby winner Ten Most Wanted.

"We always thought he was a good horse," Clement said at his Belmont Park barn on Monday. "He had been a bit unlucky with wet tracks and then he got a fever and couldn't run in the Jockey Club Gold Cup. I never doubted he was a good horse because he had two bad performances on wet tracks. I thought his [second] in the Meadowlands Cup was great."

Clement said Dynever would not race again this year, and will leave in about a week for Payson Park in Florida, where he will be prepared for his 4-year-old campaign.

Dynever was scheduled to return to New York from California on Monday afternoon.

Clement also reported that Grade 1 winner Voodoo Dancer, seventh in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf, has been retired and will be bred to A.P. Indy.

"She is a remarkable mare and has done enough," said Clement, who trained Voodoo Dancer for Green Hills Farm.

Voodoo Dancer, a 5-year-old daughter of Kingmambo, retires with a record of 11-4-2 in 21 starts and earnings of $1,427,952. Among her nine stakes victories were the Grade 1 Diana and Grade 1 Garden City Breeders' Cup.

Shine Again is retired

Shine Again, who finished second in Saturday's $150,000 First Flight at Belmont, has been retired, according to her trainer, Allen Jerkens.

Shine Again, a 6-year-old daughter of Wild Again, will leave Belmont in about a week for owner Allaire duPont's Maryland farm. Jerkens said breeding plans have not been completed.

Shine Again was going for a three-peat in the First Flight, which she lost by a neck as the favorite to Randaroo. In May, Shine Again won the Grade 2 Genuine Risk at Belmont and then finished second in five consecutive stakes.

Shine Again retires with earnings of $1,271,840 and a record of 14-10-7 in 34 starts. Her most important wins came in back-to-back runnings of the Grade 1 Ballerina at Saratoga. This year, Shine Again was beaten a nose in the Ballerina.

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