Japanese Horse Of The Year Zenno Rob Roy Dies At 22

Zenno Rob Roy winning the 2004 Japan Cup | Getty Images

Japanese Horse of the Year Zenno Rob Roy (Jpn) (Sunday Silence–Roamin Rachel, by Mining) passed away due to heart failure on Friday morning, www.tospo-keiba.jp.com reported. The 2004 G1 Japan Cup winner, who was standing at Murakami Kinya Ranch, was 22.

The dark bay was a “cool horse, who walks with dignity as he was when he was racing,” owner Zenno Management said on Facebook. “The diagnosis is a deterioration of the heart muscle due to aging. Last night [Sept. 1], the stallion laid down to sleep normally, but could not rise [this morning]. He then said goodbye to this world without suffering.”

Bred by Shiraoi Farm, Zenno Rob Roy was trained by Kazuo Fujisawa and owned by Kumiko Osako during his racing career. From 20 starts, he won seven, anchored by the Japan Cup. The stallion also claimed two races subsequently promoted to international Group 1 status–the Arima Kinen and the Tenno Sho (Autumn), while earning north of $10.4 million.

At stud, Zenno Rob Roy has left 26 black-type winners to date, 17 at the group level. His progeny are anchored by G1 Yushun Himba heroine Saint Emilion (Jpn), and the dual Group 2 winner Trailblazer (Jpn), who was fourth in the 2012 GI Breeders' Cup Turf. His daughters have produced eight stakes winners (five group), among them Group 2 scorers Ask Wild More (Jpn) (Kizuna {Jpn}) and Divine Force (Jpn) (Workforce {GB}).

Out of the GI Ballerina H. victress Roamin Rachel, Zenno Roy Roy was a half-brother to the stakes-winning and dual Grade I-placed Darling My Darling (Deputy Minister), the dam of two graded winners led by GI Alcibiades S. winner Heavenly Love (Malibu Moon). He is also from the same female family as American dual champion and five-time Grade I heroine Indian Blessing (Indian Charlie) and also features in the family of the $2.3-million topper at this year's Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Yearling Sale.

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