September 21, 2023

Belmont winner Sarava arrives at Old Friends

Last updated: 9/29/12 1:35 PM

2002 Belmont upsetter Sarava is the newest resident at Old Friends in Georgetown, Kentucky

(Photo courtesy of Old Friends)

Sarava, winner of the 2002 Belmont Stakes, has been retired to Old Friends,
the Thoroughbred Retirement Center in Georgetown, Kentucky.

Co-owners Gary Drake of Louisville and Paul and Susan Roy of Great Britain
donated the 13-year-old stallion to the organization.

Sarava arrived at Old Friends early Saturday morning from the Appleton family’s Bridlewood Farm near Ocala, Florida, where he has stood stud since 2010.

Bred in Kentucky by Bill Entenmann’s Timber Bay Farms, Sarava was sired by
1984 Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Wild Again and is out of the Deputy Minister
mare Rhythm of Life. He career boasted three wins from 17 starts and earnings of

Beginning his career on the turf in Europe, Sarava failed to break his maiden
overseas. Returning to the U.S., a minor injury kept the budding three-year-old
off the Kentucky Derby trail in 2002, but he returned with a vengeance under conditioner
Ken McPeek to demolished the field in the Sir Barton Stakes on Preakness Day at

Sarava’s greatest victory — and maybe one of the game’s biggest upsets — came
three weeks later when, at 70-1, he ended War Emblem’s bid for the Triple Crown
by capturing the 134th running of the Belmont Stakes.

Not only was Sarava the longest shot in Belmont Stakes history but his
victory came before what was then the largest crowd ever assembled for the race:
103,000 in attendance.

“Sarava is the first classic winner to retire at Old Friends,” said Old
Friends founder, Michael Blowen. “We are thrilled that Gary and the Roys would
trust us with his great stallion and grateful for the generous endowment.

“I also want to thank Midway (Kentucky) Mayor and bloodstock agent, Tom Bozarth, for his
assistance. I know Sarava’s fans will love to visit him. To
me, it’s like having Michael Jordan in my yard.”

“Sarava has been a special horse to all of us,” Gary Drake said. “He has done
his job well on the track and in the breeding shed, and has earned a respectful
retirement. We are pleased that Michael and the Old Friends staff will be caring
for him. They do a marvelous job with their retired stallions.”

For more information about Sarava or any of the retirees at Old Friends
contact the farm at (502) 863-1775.

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