Aikenite will be starting the next phase of his life and will have a new vocation in 2013. The multiple graded stakes winner will be a stallion at storied Calumet Farm in Lexington, Ky. Aikenite will be the first stallion to stand at Calumet in sometime, a facility that had previously stood leading sires Citation, Bull Lea and Alydar. Calumet Farm is owned by Brad Kelley. The son of Yes It’s True’s stud fee has yet to be announced, said Cot Campbell, Dogwood Stable, whose colors Aikenite campaigned in. The racing arm of Calumet Farm is known as Bluegrass Hall.
Aikenite is by the stallion Yes It’s True, and is out of the Saint Ballado broodmare Silverlado.
“I think it’s very flattering to the horse that this outfit bought him, and they are breeding to race,” said Campbell. “They’re not market breeders. This man is going to breed his mares to this horse. Aikenite had precocity, quality, class and looks. I think it’s flattering that he would go to one of the great farms of all time.”
Calumet will more than likely take some outside mares. Dogwood Stable has two breeding rights, and Aikenite’s trainer, the 5-time Eclipse Award winner Todd Pletcher, will also have one breeding right.
“He’s (Kelley) a major player,” said Campbell. “He won one of the Breeders’ Cup (Juvenile Sprint) races with Hightail. D. Wayne Lukas trains for him.”
The 5-year-old bay horse was retired after re-injuring his left front ankle. Aikenite was retired this winter after showing signs of inflammation in the ankle and the problem manifested itself on Oct. 29. Aikenite was scheduled to run in the Grade 3 $100,000 Ack Ack Handicap on Nov. 2 at Churchill Downs. Aikenite retired with earnings of $875,385.
“He was a joy to campaign,” said Campbell. “He ran against the best for four years, and earned a reputation as an earnest, generous and tenacious race horse. Dogwood will miss him.”