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Shergar
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Animal
    (circa 1978-circa February 8, 1983)
    Born in County Kildare, Ireland
    Sire: Great Nephew
    Dam: Sharmeen
    Owner: Aga Khan IV
    Trainer: Michael Stoute
    Jockeys: Walter Swinburn and Lester Pigott
    Eight races, 6 wins, one place
    Career winnings of $684,479
    Kidnapped from his stables on February 8, 1983, probably by the IRA
    He retired immediately after his sole finish out of the money.
    After the kidnapping, there were numerous false Shergar sightings, including a rumor that he was in Libya.
    According to an IRA informer, he was shot shortly after the kidnapping when he proved impossible to control.
    His insurance company refused to pay the owners, arguing the policy covered only death, and there was no proof the horse had died.
    He won the Epsom Derby by a record 10 lengths (1981).
    He was named the European Horse of the Year (1981).
    It was eight hours after his abduction before anyone thought to inform the police.
    The investigation of the kidnapping was described as a ‘caricature of police bungling.’
    His owners refused to pay a ransom, reasoning that otherwise every racehorse in the world would become a kidnapping target.
    He was kidnapped just before stud season began, perhaps explaining why he was so tough to control.

Credit: C. Fishel


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