Nobleland Sam, 30, one of the top sires in Ohio breeding history, died Tuesday morning in his stall at Midland Acres in Bloomingburg, Ohio, according to farm vice president Dr. John Mossbarger.
The son of Sonsam-Ima Happy Noble was bred, owned and trained by Sam A. Noble, Jr. He showed promise as a 2-year-old, but due to an oversight by Noble, was not staked to the Grand Circuit."He really wanted a colt he could race on the Grand Circuit, but he overlooked the stakes nominations on Nobleland Sam as a yearling,” said Sam "Chip" Noble III, son of Sam Noble, Jr., in a story by Dean Hoffman in the March 2013 issue of Hoof Beats. "That wasn't like my father to do, but it happened.”
He won seven of nine starts at two--including a late-closer at Lexington in 1:55--but earned just $20,477 in purses.
At three, Nobleland Sam traveled throughout North America, winning races at such tracks as Louisville Downs, The Meadows, Hazel Park, The Red Mile, Brandywine and Scioto Downs. His biggest win that year, according to Noble III, was the Confederation Cup at Flamboro Downs. His 1:55.1 win in the final was the fastest mile ever on a half-mile track in Canada.
Nobleland Sam retired with $451,417 in purse earnings over two years and was purchased by Castleton Farm to stand stud at its Ohio facility. He was overshadowed by fellow Castleton sire Handsome Sum, a son of Niatross who bred 194 mares in 1986 to Nobleland Sam's 40. Once their progeny hit the track, however, Nobleland Sam showed that he was the hot stallion in the Buckeye State.
"When those horses came to the track, Nobleland Sam's babies were 1-2-3 in the Ohio Sire Stakes that year," said Mossbarger.
After Castleton's closure, Nobleland Sam went to Midland Acres in 1990, where he served more than 200 mares in six different seasons. In 24 years at stud, he sired the winners of more than $77 million with 308 performers on the 1:55 list, led by Psilvuheartbreaker p, 1:49.3f ($1,566,664) and Noble Falcon p,1:48.3 ($1,024,126). He was inducted into the Ohio Equine Hall of Fame in 2000.
Nobleland Sam had not bred any mares since 2010. Mossbarger said he was proud to have him as part of his farm for all those years.
"He was very good to the Noble family and to Midland Acres," he said. "We were very proud to stand him and would take another like him any day." (USTA)