Shanghai Bobby is a dark bay or brown colt bred in Kentucky by Stonehaven Steadings. In September, he was sent to the Keeneland sales where he was bought for $105,000 by a representative of Starlight Racing. Jack Wold and Donnie Lucarelli, the owners of Starlight Racing, named the horse after their friend Bob Burton, an airline pilot who often flew to Shanghai. He won the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile with jockey Rosie Napravnik as a two year old in 2012. Everyone in horse racing had high hopes for him winning the 2013 Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs.
Shanghai Bobby’s early targets in 2013 were 2013 Kentucky Derby prep races – the Jan. 26 Holy Bull Stakes and the March 30 Florida Derby. On Jan. 26, Shanghai Bobby was the 2/1 favorite for the Holy Bull Stakes. He started quickly and led till the straight when he was overtaken by Itsmyluckyday. He finished the race in second behind Itsmyluckyday by six lengths sustaining the first loss of his career. On March 30, 2013 Shanghai Bobby was the 5/2 favorite for the Besilu Stables Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park. He broke sharp and stalked on the inside until the far turn where he weakened to place 5th behind Orb, Itsmyluckyday, Merit Man, and Narvaez.
Trainer Todd Pletcher said: “It’s very disappointing as he ran really well off the layoff and we were looking forward to going back to Santa Anita with him for the Breeders’ Cup Sprint or the Dirt Mile. He was a really great two-year-old, undefeated in five starts over five different distances ranging from 4½ furlongs to 1 1/16 miles. He displayed his brilliant speed in the Hopeful and Champagne and then showed tremendous courage to win the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.”
Starlight Racing co-managing partner Jack Wolf stated: “We’re disappointed as we were looking forward to him returning to top level competition following his win in the Aljamin Stakes. This horse has taken us on a great adventure, from his undefeated 2-year-old campaign and Eclipse Award, to his successful return at 3. We are proud to have owned this special horse, and we wish him the best as he begins his new career at Ashford.”
Dermot Ryan, manager of Ashford Stud, said: “While it is unfortunate that Shanghai Bobby won’t be at Santa Anita again this year, we are delighted that he’s coming to Ashford. Following Lookin At Lucky, Uncle Mo and Hansen, he is the fourth straight Eclipse Award-winning Juvenile to retire here.”
Tags: 2013 Kentucky Derby, Breeders' Cup Juvenile, Churchill Downs, Coolmore America’s Ashford Stud, Eclipse Award, Florida Derby, Hansen, Holy Bull Stakes, horse racing, Itsmyluckyday, jockey, Keeneland, Kentucky, Lookin At Lucky, Orb, retired, Rosie Napravnik, Shanghai Bobby, Starlight Racing, trainer Todd Pletcher, Uncle Mo