Arrogate, ridden by Mike Smith, en route to winning the Dubai World Cup at Meydan Racecourse in 2017. Image Credit: Agencies

Dubai: Arrogate, one of the great winners of the $12 million Dubai World Cup (Group 1) at Meydan racecourse in Dubai, was tragically euthanized on Tuesday due to an unspecified illness.

With jockey Mike Smith doing the steering, the grey son of Unbridle’s Song pulled off what had at an early stage in the race, looked like an improbable victory after he was last out of the gates.

But the emphatic winner of the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) and the 2017 Pegasus World Cup (G1) was all guts and glory as he passed one horse after the other before unleashing a final burst to outrun Gun Runner and Neolithe for a stunning 2 ¼ length victory.

It was one of the most memorable performances in the Dubai World Cup and that will long in the memory of those fortunate enough the witness the race at Meydan and the thousands watching around the world.

Arrogate had been standing at Prince Khalid Abdullah’s Juddmonte Farm in Kentucky for a third season as a stallion when he was suddenly taken ill last week.

A statement from Juddmonte said: “It is with great sadness that Juddmonte confirms that Arrogate was euthanised this morning, after a battle to save him after an illness that began last week. It is still unclear what the illness was and a post-mortem is currently being carried out.

“Arrogate had a very successful breeding season this year until last week when his breeding was suspended due to an initial suspected sore neck.

“Later in the week, he fell to the ground in his stall and efforts to get him back up proved unsuccessful. He was transported to the Hagyard Clinic under the care of Dr Bob Hunt and Dr Nathan Slovis with Dr Steve Reed representing the insurance company.

“They worked tirelessly with the staff from the Hagyard Clinic eliminating all the obvious causes and performing all available tests, including spinal tap evaluation, X-ray, ultrasound, CT Scan and many blood tests.

“Unfortunately, Arrogate was still unable to stand after four exhausting days for him. His will to fight, so valuable to him on the racetrack, became a challenge in his care. When serious secondary health issues set in, the decision was made to put him to sleep.”

Douglas Erskine Crum, CEO of the Juddmonte Group, paid tribute to a great horse and all the staff who desperately fought to keep him alive.

“This is very hard on everyone at Juddmonte, most especially on Steve Dotsey, stallion manager, and Jorge Chavarria who cared for Arrogate daily and who had such a great rapport with him,” he said.

“It was a bold decision to ask Bob Baffert to purchase and train top dirt horses for Prince Khalid and, assisted by Donato Lanni, the selection of Arrogate was one of the success stories of the decade on the racetrack.

Garrett O’Rourke, general manager of Juddmonte USA, added: “Arrogate has bred three crops at stud, has his first yearlings to present to the sales this year and his physical and personality traits are passing very strongly to his offspring.”