Last son of 'Big Red' dies aged 27
Tinners Way won back-to-back renewals of the Pacific Classic
Tinners Way, the last colt by the great Secretariat and a three-time Grade 1 winner, was euthanised at the age of 27 on Wednesday at Old Friends - a facility for retired thoroughbreds in Kentucky - where he had been pensioned since 2010.
"Tinner had been treated in the past for EPM," said Bryan Waldridge, resident veterinarian at Old Friends, attributing the cause of death to acute onset of severe neurologic disease.
"And he did have some lingering neurologic effects from a previous infection."
Bred and owned by Juddmonte Farms, Tinners Way began his career in Europe, where he won three of his seven starts in Britain and France, including the City of York Stakes and the Milcars Temple Fortune Stakes as a three-year-old.
Transferred to the US as a four-year-old, Tinners Way joined California-based trainer Bobby Frankel, under whose watchful eye Tinners Way won the 1994 Grade 1 Pacific Classic, beating the top-class Best Pal and posting a record-equaling time over the 1m2f distance.
Tinners Way had a repeat victory in the following year's Pacific Classic, where he defeated the previous year's Breeders' Cup Classic winner Concern. He won his third and final Group 1 the following year in the Californian.
Many of his on-course rivals joined him at Old Friends including Awad, Kiri's Clown and Alphabet Soup.
Sent to stud in 1997 after seven wins from 27 starts, Tinners Way stood at Vinery in Kentucky, Harris Farms in California, and finally at Key Ranch in Texas, where he retired in 2010. He was donated to Old Friends by owners Phil Leckinger and Jerry Hardin.
"27 is not a bad number," said Leckinger. "I can't thank Old Friends enough for the care and support he was given.
"Tinners Way certainly did wonders for us, he did wonders for Juddmonte on the track, and I hope he did wonders for his friends and fans in retirement."
"We are so saddened by the loss of Tinners Way," said Michael Blowen, president of Old Friends.
"But its times like these that you really see how much we can do for these old horses. Tinner was a warrior to the end, and when he told us his battle was over, we listened.
"He had so many friends from all over the country that visited him often," added Blowen. "He leaves behind a great legacy and a host of adoring fans."