Smarty Jones left Pennsylvania for Kentucky in August 2004. The 2004 Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner could be coming back to the state where he was born before the year ends.
“I want him in Pennsylvania,” said Smarty’s owner, Pat Chapman. “It just depends on [finding the right farm] and the right partners, work out some financial things. I would like to see it happen.”
There is very little patience in the breeding world, even less in an economy that really has hit horse racing hard. Smarty’s first horses to race came in 2008, months before the national economic meltdown. Smarty has not been a terrible sire. He is ranked eighth among all third-year sires. He just has not had the big horse and, thus, is not getting supported by breeders.
Which is why Smarty might make the reverse trip from Kentucky to Pennsylvania, where he would continue his stud career.
Smarty was vanned from Philadelphia Park to Three Chimney’s Farm in Midway, Ky., six summers ago. His initial stud fee was $100,000. With the bottom falling out of the market and his best offspring racing in Japan, the stud fee was only $10,000 this year.
“The Japanese really, really want him,” Chapman said. “We’ve turned down some nice offers from Japan. I keeping saying, ‘No, he’s not leaving the country.’ ”