Paynter, popular G1 winner by Awesome Again, to stand at WinStar
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Grade 1-winning millionaire Paynter, whose story of perseverance a year ago captivated the racing world, will begin his next career in 2014 as a stallion at WinStar Farm in Versailles, KY. Campaigned by Zayat Stables, Paynter is currently on track for next Saturday’s $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) at Santa Anita, and the popular Awesome Again colt is set to retire at season’s end.

“When we set our goals for 2013, one of them was to get Paynter into the WinStar stallion barn,” said Elliott Walden, WinStar President & CEO. “I look at our stallions in North America today and I see real dirt pedigrees slipping away from us. WinStar remains focused on the Classics and striving to bring home stallions that excel at running around two turns and on the dirt. Paynter’s pedigree and race record epitomizes the classic American dirt horse. Who knows how good he could have been after running a 1 on the Ragozins in last year’s Haskell. I am elated we got him. He was our first round draft pick.”

Trained by Bob Baffert, Paynter broke his maiden impressively first time out at Santa Anita, winning a 5 ½-furlong maiden race handily by 4 ¼ lengths. In his second lifetime start, he faced next-out Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another and a field full of seasoned 3-year-olds in the 1 1/8-mile Santa Anita Derby (G1), finishing a respectable fourth despite bobbling at the break. After skipping the first two legs of the 2012 Triple Crown, Paynter caught up to his crop in time to make the Belmont S. (G1). He led at every call of the demanding 1 ½-mile classic before falling just a neck short at the wire in a runner-up performance.

Moving into the second half of the season, Paynter ascended to the top of the 3-year-old division with a signature 3 ¼-length victory in the Haskell Invitational (G1), earning some of the fastest speed figures across the board by last year’s vintage crop of 3-year-olds. Paynter recorded a 107 Beyer and a 1 ½ Ragozin number in his Haskell triumph in just his sixth lifetime start, setting him up as the likely favorite for the Travers.

In top racing form, it’s what happened next that would put him in his biggest and most unexpected race – the one for his life. Paynter was taken away from the sport for the rest of the year, while courageously fighting his way back to full health through a journey that became renowned inside and outside of the horse racing community. He gained overwhelming fan support, and his determined recovery was recognized by the NTRA as the “Moment of the Year” for 2012.

After rejoining Baffert’s barn at the first of this year, Paynter embarked on a 4-year-old comeback with a memorable 4 ½-length win at Hollywood Park in June, earning a 114 Beyer for the performance – his highest among six lifetime triple-digit Beyers, and representing what is currently the fastest Beyer at seven furlongs and third fastest up to a mile in 2013. Paynter also owns a pair of runner-up finishes in the Awesome Again S. (G1) and San Diego H. (G2) this year, and he heads into the Breeders’ Cup Classic as a contender after his improbable comeback. Paynter recently breezed a minute flat for five furlongs Monday, Oct. 28 in his last work in preparation for the Classic.

“Paynter looked like a monster and is back to top form,” Baffert said of the breeze. “He’s the toughest horse I’ve ever seen. He has a heart of a champion.”

By sire of sires Awesome Again, Paynter was a $325,000 yearling purchase by agent David Ingordo, marking Awesome Again’s highest priced yearling at the 2010 Keeneland September sale. He is out of multiple graded stakes producer Tizso, a full sister to two-time Breeders’ Cup Classic winner and emerging sire of sires Tiznow. Currently, Paynter owns eight first- and second-place finishes from 10 starts, with earnings of $1,101,924.

“Paynter is a horse like no other. Win or lose Saturday, he goes down as one of the greatest of all time in my mind,” said owner Ahmed Zayat, “The fact that he’s even competing in the Breeders’ Cup is miraculous. He’s such a fighter and natural talent. Combine that with his gene pool and awesome race record, I’m excited about Paynter’s chances to be a leading sire.”

A stud fee for Paynter will be determined and announced at a later date. For more information about Paynter or any WinStar Farm stallion, please contact Darren Fox or Chance Timm at 859-297-1328.
Visit Paynter's Page Paynter
Bellamy Road filly Land Over Sea takes to Del Mar turf title=
Bellamy Road

Bellamy Road filly Land Over Sea takes to Del Mar turf

Land Over Sea scampered across the Del Mar turf course to score a 3 ¾-length maiden special weight victory in the second lifetime start for the 2-year-old...

[read more]

Shore Runner comes out on top in $100K Lucky Coin S. title=
More Than Ready

Shore Runner comes out on top in $100K Lucky Coin S.

Many of More Than Ready’s offspring have found a home on the turf, and Shore Runner looks like that type following his gutsy victory in the $100,000 Lucky Coin S...

[read more]

Hold the Giant still perfect after Edmonton Juvenile win title=
Hold Me Back

Hold the Giant still perfect after Edmonton Juvenile win

Hold the Giant, a 2-year-old son of Hold Me Back, is undefeated in two starts following his two-length victory in the $50,000 Edmonton Juvenile S...

[read more]

Sidney’s Candy filly romps in Del Mar unveiling title=
Sidney's Candy

Sidney’s Candy filly romps in Del Mar unveiling

As her sire Sidney's Candy did some six years ago, Sooner Time broke her maiden at Del Mar on July 23...

[read more]

Drosselmeyer filly debuts a 6 ½-length winner title=
Drosselmeyer

Drosselmeyer filly debuts a 6 ½-length winner

Heartbreaker Girl made short work of a field of 2-year-old fillies as the daughter of first-crop...

[read more]

Carpe Diem, G1 winner at two and three, retires to WinStar title=

Carpe Diem, G1 winner at two and three, retires to WinStar

Stonestreet Stables’ & WinStar Farm’s Carpe Diem, Giant’s Causeway’s Grade 1-winning son at two and three, has been retired from racing due to a knee chip, and will stand stud in 2016 at WinStar Farm in Versailles, KY...

[read more]

Hold for More scores second stakes win of 2015 title=
Hold Me Back

Hold for More scores second stakes win of 2015

Hold for More chalked up yet another stakes win on July 19 when the 3-year-old son of Hold me Back rolled to a 7 ¼-length victory...

[read more]

Tiz Shea D scampers to rousing victory in $500,000 Indiana Derby (G2) title=
Tiznow

Tiz Shea D scampers to rousing victory in $500,000 Indiana Derby (G2)

Tiz Shea D’s young career reached new heights on Saturday evening when the 3-year-old Tiznow colt scored a 1 ¼-length triumph in the $500,000 Indiana Derby (G2)...

[read more]

High Dollar Woman rings up win in Indiana Oaks (G2) title=
Super Saver

High Dollar Woman rings up win in Indiana Oaks (G2)

Super Saver’s High Dollar Woman turned in a superlative performance in Saturday evening’s $200,000 Indiana Oaks (G2)...

[read more]

Nonna’s Boy easily best in Monmouth’s Lamplighter S. title=
Distorted Humor

Nonna’s Boy easily best in Monmouth’s Lamplighter S.

Jumping to the lead right out of the gate, Nonna’s Boy skipped to a 3 ½-length victory in Saturday’s $60,000 Lamplighter S...

[read more]