WEST MARLBOROUGH—If he’s anything like his father, he’s destined to be a star.
Earlier this month, a mare at Walnut Green Farm gave birth to the first foal in Pennsylvania sired by American Pharoah, 2015 Triple Crown winner. On Wednesday, the public got a chance to see the foal roam the fields.
Mark Reid, owner of Walnut Green Farm on Upland Road, said the foal was born two weeks early, weighs 140 pounds, and has not yet been named.
“This foal will go with a bunch of guys his age and sex and they will be rowdy teenagers for awhile,” Reid said. “And if all goes well, he will make the races late summer or fall in year two. He will have nothing but the best. We will check for everything. If mother is not producing enough milk, we will get more milk for him. For the next year and half, he won’t have to do anything but have fun.”
The foal’s mother, High Quail is a two-time Breeder’s Cup winner and has received some tender care at a nearby equine clinic. High Quail is 13 years old and boasts a star-studded damline, including Seattle Slew. High Quail is owned by Dan Ryan’s Smart Angle LLP.
Reid said when the foal leaves for training, he hopes he never comes back.
“His father (American Pharoah) is averaging $600,000 and his little one has very correct legs and he will be tall and pretty. We’re hopeful to get seven figures for him. He’s very important to the farm. They all look alike but they are not alike. Some are chosen, and he’s the chosen one. If he succeeds, he won’t be back. We hope he doesn’t come back.”
The foal and his mother will travel to Kentucky but will return in 60 days and move to a larger area on the farm.
American Pharoah won the American Triple Crown and the Breeders' Cup Classic in 2015. He was the 12th Triple Crown winner in history, and in winning all four races, became the first horse to win the Grand Slam of Thoroughbred racing. He won the 2015 Eclipse Award for Horse of the Year and was 2015 Champion three-year-old.
Brian Sanfratello, executive secretary of the Pennsylvania Breeders Association, said thoroughbred racing plays a key part in the state’s economy.
“There are 500 breeders in Pennsylvania, and last year there were 2,000 horses that ran on three thoroughbred tracks in the state. Thoroughbred and harness racing are responsible for 20,000 jobs in Pennsylvania and has a $1.6 billion economic impact on Pennsylvania.”
Pete Peterson, Pennsylvania Horse Racing Association president, said the new foal looks like a winner.
“Pennsylvania has a rich history as the breeding ground for many legendary horses, including Smarty Jones, who won the first two legs of the Triple Crown in 2004,” he said. “It’s hard to say what the future holds for this foal, but we predict big things.”
Since its founding in 2005, the 100-acre Walnut Green has produced many championship-caliber horses, including 2011 Kentucky Oaks winner Plum Pretty, who was bred, born and raised at the farm.