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Boomboom Ballykeel Retired, To Stud

Published: January 5, 2021 11:42 am ET

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One of Ontario’s homebred harness racing stars is moving on to stallion duty.

Boomboom Ballykeel has been retired from racing and has relocated to Jamie MacKinley’s Double J Farm in P.E.I. where he will stand his first commercial season at stud in 2021.

Boomboom Ballykeel retired at the end of 2020 as a nine-year-old with career earnings of $976,487 and a mark of 1:49.3. The Mach Three stallion is probably best remembered for his 1:50.4 two-length victory in the 2013 edition of the Metro Stakes.

Other memorable victories include OSS Gold and Grassroot wins, a Canadian Breeders elimination win, and preferred victories at Mohawk, London and Flamboro. He also raced against many of North America’s top colts in the Milstein, Confederation Cup and the Prix D'Ete.

Throughout his older career Boomboom Ballykeel competed with many of the nation's top pacers and even defeated the great Foiled Again in an Invitational pace at Western Fair, stopping the London teletimer in 1:53.2. The stallion’s best half-mile time record was a 2017 mile over Flamboro in 1:51.2, which was a track record for aged stallions at that time.

Ballykeel Racing owner Cam McKnight said he kept Boomboom Ballykeel racing hoping to crack the $1-million dollar mark in earnings, but shutdowns of harness racing due to COVID-19 were making that goal tough to reach.

“He was still racing good, but with another shutdown it seemed like the right time to give him a shot in the breeding shed,” said McKnight. “Jamie MacKinley (PEI’s Double J Farms) contacted me three or four years ago, but at that time he was still racing at the Preferred levels, so I put him off. Now the timing seems right.”

Boomboom Ballykeel retires as the third richest Mach Three stallion of all time behind only Somebeachsomewhere and Century Farroh. He also recorded 44 lifetime wins during his racing career.

McKnight wanted to thank all the top-rate caretakers Boomboom Ballykeel had thoughout his racing career, but had a special shoutout for trainer Richard Moreau and driver Sylvain Filion. He recalled the first time 'Boomboom' ever went behind the gate and won his baby qualifier in 2:00.4 with McKnight himself steering.

“I had listed Sylvain but he took another colt. After Boomboom flew by everyone in the stretch Sylvain pulled up beside me and said, 'that colt is fast'. I reminded him I had listed him, and then said 'I guess the best way to get you on him is to give him to Richard to train,' so I did. It turned out to be a pretty good decision.

“Boomboom gave my family and friends some amazing memories. Hopefully his offspring can provide future owners with their own amazing memories,” McKnight concluded.

Boomboom Ballykeel will stand at McKinley’s Double J Farms and his 2021 introductory fee will be $1,200 +HST.

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