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Moscow Ballet Dies at 26

COALINGA, Calif. (Apr. 7, 2008) -- Moscow Ballet (Nijinsky-Milan Mill, by Cornish Prince) died on Friday, Apr. 4 at Harris Farms. He was 26.

Moscow Ballet was a Kentucky-bred that started his racing career in Ireland where he won the Railway Stakes as a 2-year-old. He stood his first season at Harris Farms in 1986, and has sired over 750 foals that have earned over $20 million. He was an active stallion until recently, with his last crop being foals of 2008.

He was the sire of 19 stakes winners including Grade I stakes winners Golden Ballet, Dominant Dancer, and Dancing Edie, as well as six California champions -- Soviet Problem, Moscow Burning, Golden Ballet, Dominant Dancer, Teresa Mc, and Moscow Changes.

“A sad day on the farm,” said farm manager Dave McGlothlin. “Moscow Ballet has been confined to his stall for the last 10 days due to instability in his hind quarters. He wasn't very happy in there, so I took him out to his paddock this morning for some sunshine and a walkabout. He felt pretty good and actually jogged off when I turned him loose. I realized that he might not come back in if he went down because he hasn't lain down in over 10 days and we all doubted that he could stand again, if he did go down. Sometime this afternoon he decided he'd had enough and did go down in his favorite spot toward the back of his paddock. As we expected, he wasn't able to get up so Jeanne peacefully took care of him there. We buried him in his favorite spot in his paddock. He had a great run”.

Said resident veterinarian Dr. Jeanne Bowers: “Good day at the races (Harris’ Lucky J. H. and High Standards ran one-two in the Sensational Star Stakes at Santa Anita) but sad day overall with the passing of Moscow Ballet. Of all the horses near the stallion barn the only one that seemed bothered was Redattore. He watched while Moscow passed into the next world and then trotted over to look at the mares. I felt as if the reins had passed on and Moscow's spirit will hopefully help make Redattore a great sire. My heart went out to Dave and Raul as the bond that develops over 20 years is so strong and to see the mighty Moscow turned into a shadow of his former self was tough.”

Said stallion manager Raul Rosas: “Moscow Ballet and I came to the farm about the same time and I took care of him for over 20 years. He was a classy, intelligent horse and I much enjoyed being around him. He was in great health until just recently, and it was sad to see him decline so much the last few days, but he went out like a champ.

Said John Harris: “Moscow Ballet was the first top stallion that stood at our farm. It was very rewarding that he just kept siring top race horses, especially fillies and mares. They could run short or long, dirt or turf. I am glad to also see mares by him become good producers with his daughters producing 11 stakes horses to date, and I am pleased I have some of them to keep those bloodlines alive here at our farm. He had a great personality and presence and will be missed, but never forgotten.”
 


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