Aiken Training Track graduates perform well as racehorses and stallions in 2019 1

Jockey Julien Leparoux pats Aiken-trained Concrete Rose on the neck as she cruises to victory in the $750,000 Saratoga Oaks Invitational Stakes last August at Saratoga Race Course in New York. Concrete Rose is an Aiken Training Track graduate and the 2019 Aiken-trained Horse of the Year.

Thoroughbreds that are graduates of the Aiken Training Track performed well last year in competition, and two ranked among the top sires in North America.

Alumni of the facility on Two Notch Road earned a total of $5,634,932 in racing purses, according to statistics compiled by Aiken Training Track President Bill Gutfarb, who also is the chair of the facility’s Finance Committee.

Twenty of the runners won stakes races and 25 finished second and/or third in stakes.

The Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame and Museum’s Advisory Board named Concrete Rose the 2019 Aiken-trained Horse of the Year.

The 5-year-old mare won all four of her races last year while earning $1,041,900.

She captured two grade I events on the grass in New York – the Belmont Oaks Invitational Stakes at Belmont Park and the Saratoga Oaks Invitational Stakes at Saratoga Race Course in New York.

Concrete Rose also triumphed in two grade III races on grass – the Edgewood Stakes presented by Forcht Bank at Churchill Downs in Kentucky and the Florida Oaks at Tampa Bay Downs in Florida.

Other standout Training Track graduates in 2019 included Henley’s Joy, Eons, Killybegs Captain and City Boy.

The Training Track’s latest winter training season is underway. The facility’s chairman, Chad Ingram, has started a new incentive program, and its slogan is “Train for 4 months, pay for 3,” according to a Training Track news release.

Palace Malice and Quality Road were the standout Training Track graduates among North America-based stallions in 2019, according to statistics compiled by the BloodHorse magazine.

Palace Malice ranked third among freshman sires by progeny earnings. His first crop of offspring earned $1,761,057. Twenty were winners, and two were stakes winners.

Palace Malice’s leading earner was Structor with $709,500. Structor captured all three of his 2019 races, including the grade I Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Presented by Coolmore America at Santa Anita Park in California.

He is a finalist for the 2019 Eclipse Award for champion 2-year-old male.

Palace Malice was the only freshman sire with an Eclipse Award finalist and a winner of a Breeders’ Cup World Championships race.

While racing for Dogwood Stable, Palace Malice won the grade I Belmont Stakes in 2013 and the grade I Metropolitan Handicap in 2014 at Belmont Park. He was the Aiken-trained Horse of the Year in 2013 and 2014.

Palace Malice lives at Three Chimneys Farm in Kentucky.

The top 2019 freshman sire based on progeny earnings was 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah. His offspring won $2,703,916.

Quality Road ranked fifth among all North American-based sires based on progeny earnings. His offspring won $13,208,060.

Bred and raced by Edward P. Evans, Quality Road won four grade I races, including the 2010 Metropolitan Handicap and the 2009 Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park.

Quality Road, who was the 2009 and 2010 Aiken-trained Horse of the Year, lives at Lane’s End Farm in Kentucky.

Young thoroughbreds are prepared for racing at the Training Track when they are yearlings and 2-year-olds. Older thoroughbreds also use the Training Track facilities while getting a break from racing.

​Dede Biles is the Aiken County government, business and horse industry reporter for the Aiken Standard. Follow her on Twitter @DBethBiles.