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Bold Chieftain Makes His ‘Swan Song’ Monday At Golden Gate Fields
The multiple stakes-winning millionaire Bold Chieftain raced eight times in 2011, a year in which he was supposed to be servicing mares in the breeding shed. His stud career was stymied, however, when the farm he was going to stand at closed down and no other breeding farms expressed interest.
Bold Chieftain will make his first and only start of 2012 Monday at Golden Gate Fields in the featured third race, a 1 1/16-mile allowance test for older horses. One week after the race, Bold Chieftain, finally, will be on his way to the breeding shed at Ellen Jackson’s Victory Rose Thoroughbreds farm in Vacaville.
“This is the swan song,” said trainer William J. Morey, Jr., who owns Bold Chieftain in partnership with Dwaine Hall and the Ernest Langbein Trust. “This is Brett Favre saying he’s retiring again, but he really means it this time.”
Golden Gate Fields’ special Martin Luther King, Jr. Day racing program begins at 12:45 p.m. Post time for third race, Bold Chieftain’s finale, is 1:45 p.m.
“He’s doing good,” said Morey Sunday morning when asked how 9-year-old Bold Chieftain was acting on the eve of his final racetrack performance. “He’s not fully cranked up – we’ve kind of just eased him into this race – but I think he’ll give a good account of himself. It will be an emotional day.”
Morey first welcomed Bold Chieftain into his barn in 2005 and has coached the California-bred son of Chief Seattle through a long and marvelous racing career. Bold Chieftain has won 18 races, including 14 stakes. He has finished in the money in 35 of his 46 career starts and has earned $1,673,171.
Bold Chieftain has won on every type of track surface – dirt, synthetic, turf, and wet –and at four different distances – six furlongs, one mile, 1 1/16-miles, and 1 1/8-miles.
Bold Chieftain will be ridden Monday by his favorite jockey, Russell Baze, who has escorted the veteran around the track in 35 races and guided him to 16 victories. Bold Chieftain is the 8-to-5 morning line favorite in the holiday feature, a race in which he’ll face Dunmore East, Soldiers Point, Stalking Gold, and Northern Causeway.
Golden Gate Fields will salute Bold Chieftain on Sunday, Jan. 22, the day before he will depart for Victory Rose Thoroughbreds. Fans attending the races will receive a free Bold Chieftain poster and also get the opportunity to watch the old pro parade one final time in front of the grandstand.