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Midshipman: Juvenile Champion

Thirteen years after Unbridled’s Song showed his grit and determination in winning the 1995 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, his son Midshipman did the same.

Midshipman, born in March of 2006, was bred by Stonerside Stable in Kentucky. His dam, Fleet Lady, is a multi-graded stakes winning daughter of Avenue of Flags. His sire, Unbridled’s Song, was a successful racehorse and a very successful sire. With such a grand pedigree, it was almost guaranteed that Midshipman would become a graded stakes winner.

Photo by CC Photography

After spending some time under the careful direction of trainer Bob Baffert, Midshipman made his racing debut in a Maiden Special Weight at Del Mar on August 17th, 2008. In that race, he stalked the pace and went into the stretch four wide to win gamely.

One month later, Midshipman made a huge jump in class for a narrow win in the Gr.1 Del Mar Futurity.  Later that September, Midshipman made a huge run in the Gr.1 Norfolk Stakes, claiming a second place finish.

For his final start of his two-year old season, Midshipman was entered into the Gr.1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. Unlike his other starts, Midshipman took the lead in the race halfway down the backstretch. In the stretch, Midshipman mimicked his sire by fighting hard to cross the wire in front of Square Eddie.  

In an interview for Blood-Horse, jockey Garrett Gomez said, “Turning for home, I asked him to start accelerating, he answered all the right questions. He went about his business really well and hung on against a really nice racehorse”.

Midshipman’s juvenile season had been a successful one. He had won his debut, won two grade one races, and finished second in another. His success not only earned him $1.38 million, but also Champion Two-Year Old honors.

While preparing for his three-year old debut, Midshipman sustained a soft tissue injury to his left foreleg while exercising in Dubai. The injury prevented him from being able to run in any of the Triple Crown races for his new owner Godolphin and new trainer Saeed bin Suroor.

Photo by CC Photography

It took Midshipman until September of 2009 to return to the racetrack. He won his first start in an Allowance Race at Belmont Park. Coming off of that win, Midshipman was back in graded company for the first time in almost a year for the Gr.1 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile. Breaking from post three, Midshipman was easily able to lead the pack from the rail. In the deep stretch of the race, Midshipman weakened and crossed the wire in third.

As a four-year old, Midshipman made two starts at Meydan Racecourse, finishing fourth and first. In September of 2010, Darley announced that Midshipman would be retired.

Midshipman arrived to his new Lexington home with a record of 8:5-1-1 and earnings of over $1.5 million. He currently stands for $8,500 and has been producing notable progeny such as G3 winners Lady Shipman, Dearest, and Sassy Sienna as well as  G2 winner Princess Warrior.

“He’s something. And he’ll run all day. As far as they want.” - Jockey Tyler Baze after the Del Mar Futurity, interview with Blood-Horse.


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