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Triple Grade 1-winner Unique Bella retired to paddocks after sustaining injury

Unique Bella: won the Clement L. Hirsch but it wasn't straightforward
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Don Alberto Stable's three-time Grade 1 winner and champion Unique Bella has been retired from racing after an ankle injury was discovered following her workout at Del Mar on Saturday.

Don Alberto executive director Fabricio Buffolo said a chip in her sesamoid was discovered after her five-furlong drill in 1:01 flat over the Del Mar main track Saturday morning.

The four-year-old Tapit filly was training toward a start in the Grade 1 Zenyatta Stakes at Santa Anita on September 30. An eight-time graded winner, three of her last four victories were at the Grade 1 level— La Brea Stakes, Beholder Mile Stakes and the Clement L. Hirsch Stakes.

"Unique Bella has a very special place in our hearts and has brought so much joy to myself, my mother Liliana and the whole Don Alberto family," Don Alberto owner Carlos Heller said in a statement. "We look forward to having her at our farm in Lexington, where she will enjoy her new career as a broodmare."

She had a 9-2-0 record from 12 starts and earned more than $1.2 million. Bred in Pennsylvania by Brushwood Stable out of the Grade 1-winning Unbridled's Song mare Unrivaled Belle, she was a $400,000 purchase by Don Alberto from Eaton Sales' consignment to the 2015 Keeneland September Yearling Sale.

Unique Bella has a very special place in our hearts and has brought so much joy
E.W. Terms
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