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Two Giants of Thoroughbred Racing Die

For those who follow thoroughbred racing, some sad news has come across the wire. Personal Ensign, and Dixieland Band, two giants of the breeding industry, have died.

Most readers will remember Personal Ensign for her thrilling by-the-nose-finish in the nine furlong Breeder's Cup Distaff. In that race, she beat Winning Colors, the 1988 Kentucky Derby Winner.

Scroll down for their full obituaries. Please feel free to leave your comments and memories of these two beautiful animals below.


Personal Ensign, 26, the bay mare who won the 1988 Breeder's Cup Distaff by a nose over Kentucky Derby winner Winning Colors to remain unbeaten in her racing career, died April 8 at her home at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Ky.

No Cause of death was reported, but she had been suffering from arthritis.
Ms.Personal Ensign, trained by Shug McGaughey, won 13 times out of 13 starts and accrued more than $1.6 million in purses before pursuing a successful career as a broodmare.

Personal Ensign was born Jan 1. 1984 on the farm of Ogden Phipps, the renown thoroughbred owner and breeder.

Of Ms. Personal Ensign's ten children, eight were winners, including grade I stakes champions Miner's Mark, My Flag, and Traditionally.

She was the 1988 Eclipse best older female, and was inducted into the National Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame in 1993.


Dixieland Band, 30, one of the three founding stallions at Lane's End Farm near Versailles, Ky, whose hundreds of progeny have earned more than $75.7 million and include117 stakes winners, died April 7 at Lane's End.

He was euthanized because of failing health.

Dixieland Band was born Jan. 1 1980 to the family of Mrs. Bayard Sharp, mother of thoroughbred breeder William S. Farish.

In his racing career, Mr. Dixieland Band won two grade II stakes and earned more than $400,000 in purses.

He shined as a sire of broodmares and was among the top 10 leading North American broodmare sires for the last eight years.

Two of Mr. Dixieland Band's grandsons, Monarchos and Street Sense, won the Kentucky Derby.

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By T. Rees Shapiro  |  April 9, 2010; 1:35 PM ET
 | Tags: Claiborne Farm, Dixieland Band, Equestrian, Kentucky Derby, Personal Ensign, Racing, Winning Colors, sport  
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