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Top Illinois sire Sportsmaster dies at age 30

October 05, 2019
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Sportsmaster, a son of Abercrombie who became a top sire in Illinois, has died at the age of 30. He was residing at Dr. Ken and Pat Walker’s Fox Valley Standardbreds, where he had made his home since his retired to stud duty following his 3-year-old season.
 
In announcing the stallion’s passing, Walker Standardbreds posted the following on its Facebook page: “He was loved by all who he met, especially those who cared for him each day. He lived a full and wonderful life and we are blessed to have owned him.”
 
Bred by George Segal and Picasso Stable, Sportsmaster was out of the Sonsam mare Diana Lynn Lobell. Sportsmaster had a very successful freshman season for trainer-driver John Simpson Jr., finishing first or second in 14 of 18 starts, taking a mark of 1:52.1 and earning $727,563. His sophomore season was a disappointment as he earned just $28,240. He was purchased by Fox Valley Standardbreds for stud duty.
 
Sportsmaster stood at stud 27 years, even breeding six mares this year. From 1993 through 2001, his books numbered from 152 to 189 mares each season. He sired the winners of $102.6 million, including five millionaires. His richest offspring was the pacing filly Ohyouprettything p,3, 1:50.4 ($1.2 million), a multiple Illinois champion, while his fastest was Mucho Sleazy p,3, 1:48, also an Illinois champion. At this past September’s Illini Classic, a filly by Sportsmaster topped the sale at $40,000.
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