World Record holder and two-time millionaire Artistic Fella has reportedly been retired from racing and will be heading to the breeding shed
"He hasn't had any easy races from his three-year-old year to the end of last year," owner Joseph Alborano, citing issues related to his blood and dehydration, told the United States Trotting Association. "I didn't want to take any chances with him. It hurts me to have to retire him. He's the best thing that ever happened to me. I never thought I would get a good one like him."
The son of Pacific Fella - Everythings Easy, won over $2.6 million and 26 races lifetime, including seven sub-1:49 scores and a 10-race win streak at three that included wins in the Berry's Creek, the Meadowlands Pace and the Oliver Wendell Holmes. His lifetime mark of 1:48 came in the 2008 Ben Franklin final where he set a 1:48 world record at Harrah's Chester.
Artistic Fella - Ben Franklin
"The horse doesn't own me anything," said Alborano. "He has done things for us and racing and the public. We brought him back at four and five—the game would be better if everyone did with their world champions and gave the horses a chance to race. The public enjoys these world champions.
"I believe Lis Mara, Mister Big and Artistic Fella are the best horses of the last 20 years. They were very durable and deserve all the respect for coming back year after year."
Artistic Fella is reportedly wintering in Florida with trainer Steve Elliott while his owner works on finalizing a stallion deal.
"Steve and I will talk, and try to give the horse the best opportunity," said Alborano. "It's more about doing the right thing for him and the money will come after. Whether he becomes a great stallion is irrelevant. I just want to do right by the horse."
(With files from USTA)