January 14, 2022

South Africa’s reigning Horse Of The Year Rainbow Bridge has been retired from racing. The seven- year-old son of Ideal World made his last start when third in Saturday’s G1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate.

His trainer Eric Sands issued the following statement on Facebook:” I was very pleased with his effort in the L’Ormarins Queens Plate on Saturday. A perfect run in preparation for the upcoming Met.

But it is not to be. He jarred his near fore knee in the race and it has got progressively worse throughout the week. After consultation with Mr and Mrs Rattray, we have decided it is in the best interest of Rainbow to retire him. He has done us proud and his well-being is first and foremost. 

A tough decision for many, but not so in the case of the Rattrays. They would never risk their Horse of the Year being seriously injured. It is an honour and a privilege to train for such owners.
After them, I spoke to Mary Slack, who bred RB at Wilgebosdrift Stud. Sad, yes, but the decision was unanimous.”

One of three Equus Champions for sire Ideal World, Rainbow Bridge was named South Africa’s Horse Of The Year, Champion Older Male and Champion Middle Distance Horse for 2020-2021.

The gelded son of South Africa’s reigning Broodmare Of The Year Halfway To Heaven leaves the track having won 11 races, while earning over R8 million in stakes, with his five G1 victories including two runnings of the G1 Met (above).

The uber consistent Rainbow Bridge won or placed in 24 of 26 starts, and won a total of nine graded races.

He is one of three G1 winners produced by G3 Prix du Cap winner Halfway To Heaven, whose champion son Hawwaam recently finished a successful first season at stud.

Images: Gold Circle