Favorite Trick, the 1997 horse of the year, and The Down Side, a quarter horse who won the 2003 Champion of Champions at Los Alamitos, were among six stallions killed in a barn fire Tuesday night in New Mexico.
The cause of the fire, which occurred at the JEH Stallion Station in Hondo, which is owned by Jim and Marilyn Helzer and R.D. Hubbard, is unknown and is under investigation.
Owned by Joseph Lacombe, Favorite Trick, a son of Phone Trick, won all eight of his starts as a 2-year-old, including the Breeders' Cup Juvenile at Hollywood Park, to earn horse-of-the-year honors. He was the first 2-year-old to win the title since Secretariat in 1972.
Turned over to Bill Mott for his 3-year-old season, Favorite Trick won four of eight in 1998, including the Jim Dandy Stakes at Saratoga. He only competed in one of the three Triple Crown races that year, finishing eighth in the Kentucky Derby.
Favorite Trick had originally stood for a $30,000 stud fee at Walmac in Lexington, Ky., but his price had been reduced more than once. At the time of his death, his stud fee was $4,000.
The other two thoroughbreds who perished in the fire were Saratoga Six and Gone Hollywood. Saratoga Six, a son of Alydar, won all four of his starts, including the 1984 Del Mar Futurity. Besides The Down Side, the other quarter horses who died in the fire were Fredericksburg and Southern Cartel.