Photo: Laura Battles.
GEORGETOWN, KY – JULY 6, 2017 – Tinners Way, multiple grade-one winner and the last colt born of the great Secretariat, has died. The 27-year-old stallion was euthanized July 5th at Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Farm in Georgetown, KY, where he had been pensioned since 2010.
Michael Blowen, founder and President of Old Friends, made the announcement of his passing this morning. Old Friends resident veterinarian Dr. Bryan Waldridge attributed the cause of death to acute onset of severe neurologic disease. “Tinner had been treated in the past for EPM,” added Waldridge, “and he did have some lingering neurologic effects from a previous infection.”
Bred and owned by Juddmonte Farms, Tinners Way (Secretariat – Devon Diva, The Minstrel) began his career in Europe, where he won three of his seven starts in England and France, including the City of York Stakes and the Milcars Temple Fortune Stakes on the turf as a 3-year-old.
In the U.S. as a 4-year-old, Tinner joined California-based trainer Bobby Frankel’s barn, and under the Hall of Famer’s watchful eye the striking chestnut won the grade one $1 million Pacific Classic in 1995, beating future Hall-of-Famer Best Pal and posting a record-equaling mile and a quarter of 1:59 2/5, a time reminiscent of his sire’s Kentucky Derby run.
Tinners Way had a repeat victory in the ’95 Pacific Classic, where he defeated 1994’s Breeders’ Cup Classic champion Concern, and he earned yet another grade-one win the following year in The Californian.
Throughout his career Tinners Way faced off against numerous Old Friends pensioners, including Awad, Kiri’s Clown, and Alphabet Soup.
Sent to stud in 1997 after 27 starts, seven wins, and career earnings of $1,849,452, Tinners Way stood at Vinery in Kentucky, Harris Farms in California, and finally at Key Ranch in Texas, where he retired in 2010 as the richest racehorse in Texas. He was donated to Old Friends by owners Phil Leckinger and Jerry Hardin.
“Twenty-seven is not a bad number,” said Leckinger by phone from Texas. “I can’t thank Old Friends enough for the care and support he was given. Tinners Way certainly did wonders for us, he did wonders for Juddmonte on the track, and I hope he did wonders for his friends and fans in retirement.”
“We are so saddened by the loss of Tinners Way,” said Old Friends’s Blowen, “but its times like these that you really see how much we can do for these old horses. Tinner, like Wallenda, was a warrior to the end, and when he told us his battle was over, we listened. He had so many friends from all over the country that visited him often,” added Blowen. “He leaves behind a great legacy and a host of adoring fans.”
Old Friends is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization that cares for more than 170 retired racehorses. Its Dream Chase Farm, located in Georgetown, KY, is open to tourists daily by appointment. Old Friends also has a satellite facility in Greenfield Center, New York, Old Friends at Cabin Creek: The Bobby Frankel Division, which is also open to visitors. For more information on tours or to make a donation, contact the main farm at (502) 863-1775 or see their website at www.oldfriendsequine.org.