The death of Devil’s Preacher in a hurdle race made for a somber mood at the Carolina Cup, April 2 in Camden, S.C.
According to his jockey Xavier Aizpuru, the Virginia-based ‘chaser, owned by Colvin Ryan and trained by Julie Gomena, was traveling well in the five-horse field until leaving too long before one of the National hurdles in the $30,000 allowance race.
“He took a chance at the fence, and tragically this time he didn’t get away with it,” Aizpuru said. “He hit it hard and flipped on the other side, breaking his neck.”
Aizpuru was thrown clear and only suffered bruises in the accident.
The 8-year-old son of Pulpit had three jump wins to his name. He first started over hurdles in April of 2009, placing third, and went on to win his first race that September at Foxfield (Va.) with Ryan up.
The horse only raced once in April of 2010, where he won the amateur/novice rider hurdle at Old Dominion Hunt Point-To-Point (Va.), also with Ryan.
This season, Devil’s Preacher fell with jockey Carl Rafter in the open hurdle at the Blue Ridge Hunt Point-To-Point (Va.) on March 12, then came back to win the following weekend in the open hurdle at the Warrenton Hunt Point-To-Point (Va.), March 19, also with Rafter.
In 2004, the Kentucky-bred great grandson of Seattle Slew was sold for $475,000 to R.A. Hill Stables at the Keeneland September sales. Devil’s Preacher made $258,864 in combined flat and jump wins.