Saturday, July 11, 2009

Farewell, Lawyer Ron, the breed needed you

Just a short note on the sad news today that Lawyer Ron, a splendid 3-year-old and record-setting winner of the Whitney H.-G1 at 4, was put down Friday at Stonewall Farms near Versailles, Ky., due to complications from colic surgery.

Lawyer Ron was only 6 years old and was completing his second year at stud. The farm says foal-owners were high on his babies; of course it remains to be seen if they'll run.

But their daddy could.

He was a mile stakes winner at Evangeline Downs at 2, then won the Risen Star S.-G3 at Fair Grounds and swept the Oaklawn Park Derby-preps (Southwest S., Rebel S.-G3, Arkansas Derby-G2) before falling short in the Kentucky Derby itself. At 4, in addition to his Whitney record, he also won the Woodward S.-G1, and finished second to Curlin in the Jockey Club Gold Cup-G1.

Of equal importance to me as a breeder and a pedigree enthusiast is that Lawyer Ron was among the sounder examples of the brilliant Danzig line. A son of Canadian champion Langfuhr, an under-appreciated sire who ran 23 times himself, Lawyer Ron made 26 lifetime starts, essentially double the average established by Danzig's own sons and daughters. It was my hope that he could carry on the talent of Danzig's line with a greater degree of durability than some from that line (i.e., Big Brown) have shown.

Lawyer Ron was also a bit more old-school in his breeding on his dam's side (out of a Lord Avie mare whose dam was by Grey Dawn's G1-winning son Mr. Redoy; third dam by Rambunctious). And he was a valuable outcross for Mr. Prospector.

So it's terribly sad to see Lawyer Ron go -- a talented, brave runner on the track, and a potentially valuable addition to the breeding community whose true and full influence on the breed now can never be known.


  1. Farewell, peace, and blessings to a great champion, Lawyer Ron. It is indeed sad to have his life ended so early. I was there at Saratoga when he not only won the Whitney, but broke the record.
    He will be missed. Rest in Peace, Champ.

  2. Always nice when Ray Paulick links to you from Sucks when you realize that you have a redundant "son" in the next-to-last paragraph. But, fixed.

  3. Lawyer Ron's biggest fanJuly 12, 2009 at 4:06 PM

    I too am saddened by the loss of this great racehorse and potentially great sire. The thoroughbred breed needs many more stallions who display his kind of talent combined with soundness and durability. He also had an interesting pedigree and many people may not realize that his 7th dam is also the 5th dam of A.P. Indy. And being that Lawyer Ron's sire is the ultra-versatile Langfuhr, Lawyer Ron may have been a great sire for all three racing surfaces. I put my best mare in-foal to him this year and I hope that I get a top-class foal that will someday show the racing world what a fabulous treasure Lawyer Ron was. RIP Lawyer Ron.

  4. Thanks for your comments and your insight as someone who was both a fan of Lawyer Ron's and a breeder who sent him a mare. I wish you the very best of luck with the foal. May he or she be healthy, straight and strong, and run like the sire. Come back and keep me posted!


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