Stakes winner Battle Station dies at Belmont

Friday, June 2nd, 2023

Battle Station, upset winner of the 2020 Lucky Coin at Saratoga, died Sunday at Belmont Park. Chelsea Durand/NYRA Photo.

Three-time stakes winner Battle Station reportedly suffered injuries to his left hind leg in a workout Sunday at Belmont Park and had to be euthanized.

The 8-year-old New York-bred gelding by Warrior’s Reward suffered a comminuted pastern fracture, a lateral condylar fracture and a medial sesamoid fracture as he neared the end of his workout, according to Daily Racing Form. Battle Station was transported from Belmont to the nearby Ruffian Clinic but could not be saved.

“His injuries were a little worse than Barbaro’s,” Dr. Don Baker told the Form. “Because the pastern was so badly fractured, you couldn’t do a joint-fusion surgery.”

Bred by Lansdowne Thoroughbreds, Battle Station was out of the unraced Unbridled mare Uriel. A half-brother to five winners, Battle Station originally sold out of the Kearney Park consignment as a weanling for $50,000 to Ken and Sarah Ramsey at the 2015 Keeneland November breeding stock sale.

Battle Station started his career for the Ramseys and trainer Wesley Ward. He won his debut in August 2017 at Saratoga Race Course and followed that with a victory in the Bertram F. Bongard Stakes at Belmont Park. He later placed in a Churchill Downs allowance-optional and earned a finalist nod for champion 2-year-old New York-bred male.

Battle Station returned to New York for Ward and the Ramseys at 3 and finished fourth in the Damon Runyon Stakes in January 2018 before a victory in the Rego Park Stakes in February, both at Aqueduct. He earned finalist consideration that season for champion 3-year-old New York-bred male.

Battle Station changed hands via the claim box or transfer a few times, including a late August 2020 switch to Rob Atras before he won the Lucky Coin Stakes at Saratoga Race Course. Battle Station placed in the Grade 3 Parx Dash Stakes and Laurel Dash Stakes in 2021 and the Say Florida Sandy Stakes and King T. Leatherbury Stakes in 2022. He was also a finalist for New York-bred champion turf male and champion sprinter honors in 2020 and 2021.

Dominick Schettino claimed Battle Station for $45,000 for Sal-Lou J G Stable out of a sixth-place finish in a 6-furlong turf allowance-optional April 27 at Aqueduct. He had also been claimed for the same price in his prior start, a seventh in a similar allowance-optional in mid-November at Aqueduct, by Winning Move Stable and trainer Linda Rice.

Battle Station compiled a record of 9-10-6 in 53 starts, earning $745,475.

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