June 7, 1987 |
Trainer Jack Van Berg won't be appearing on "Good Morning America" Monday. He won't be banking $500,000, either. Van Berg's share of a potential $5-million payoff disappeared Saturday, right along with the Triple Crown championship, when Alysheba ran a dismal fourth in the Belmont Stakes, a nine-horse race when it started but a one-horse blowout at the end.
January 28, 1989 |
Alysheba, who is expected to be named 1988 horse of the year during a ceremony today at Santa Anita, has put together the strongest record since John Henry in 1981. To win racing's highest honor, Alysheba had to be better than just good last year. Two of the horses he beat in the voting--Personal Ensign, the undefeated filly, and Risen Star, winner of the Preakness and Belmont--had records that would have been good enough to win the title in many years. All but 1 of Alysheba's 9 starts were in major races, and he won 6 of them, including the Breeders' Cup Classic at Churchill Downs, where he ran his final race before going to stud, breaking John Henry's record by going over the $6.6-million mark in purses.
June 8, 1987 |
As the horses were going into the gate Saturday for the 119th running of the Belmont Stakes, the odds board showed some mystifying numbers. Alysheba, who won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness and with a victory in the Belmont would have become the 12th Triple Crown champion, was the 4-5 favorite. There was nothing wrong with that. The 64,772 fans at Belmont Park were as confident as Alysheba's jockey, Chris McCarron, who had said: "I knew we were going to win.
November 13, 1988
One week after Alysheba became horse racing's all-time leading money-winner, owners Dorothy and Pamela Scharbauer announced Saturday that he will retire to stand at stud on a farm near Lexington, Ky. The 1987 Kentucky Derby winner won the $3-million Breeders' Cup Classic Nov. 5 and raised his earnings to $6,679,242, passing John Henry's record of $6,597,947. Bred in Kentucky by Preston Madden, Alysheba is a 4-year-old son of Alydar out of Bel Sheba, by Lt. Stevens.
December 8, 1988 |
I always thought Citation was the best race horse I ever saw. Then, I saw Swaps and I wasn't so sure. Then, I saw Affirmed and fell in love all over again. Affirmed did everything you'd ask of a horse and, besides, Laz Barrera, his trainer, loved him, too. Laz had trained horses all over the hemisphere but, so far as Laz was concerned, Affirmed could do everything but talk. But right now, I'm beginning to wonder if the recently retired Alysheba isn't as good as any of them.
May 19, 1987
Woody Stephens has trained the winners of the last five Belmont Stakes, starting with Conquistador Cielo, a 14 1/2-length winner in 1982. Stephens, 73, will saddle two horses in the Belmont June 6. One is Conquistarose, a son of Conquistador Cielo. The other is Gone West. Neither raced in the Kentucky Derby or the Preakness, both won Alysheba. Asked by the New York Times what he thought of Alysheba, Stephens said: "What's he been beating? He's a nice horse, but the Preakness didn't scare me."