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Indian Charlie

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Indian Charlie thoroughbred horse racing

Bob Baffert leading Indian Charlie off for a workout before the 1998 Kentucky Derby.

© Cindy Pierson Dulay

Indian Charlie euthanized at age 16:

The son of In Excess was euthanized at 9:30am EST on December 15, 2011, at Airdrie Stud in Kentucky after a battle with hemangiosarcoma and its complications. Hemangiosarcoma is a rapidly growing and highly invasive cancer occurring in the lining of blood vessels.

Airdrie Stud said in a press release, "He was dearly loved by everyone that cared for him on a daily basis. 'Charlie' has been a shining star at Airdrie for many years now. His personality, toughness, and utter determination remained with him throughout treatment. He won many hearts at Hagyard’s, and received an endless supply of much deserved carrots and peppermints while there. Our thanks go out to everyone involved with this fine stallion, and to our shareholders and breeders who faithfully supported Indian Charlie over the years. We would sincerely like to thank Dr. Nathan Slovis and his team at McGee Medical Center for their unrelenting efforts to try and save our stallion."

Racing Career:

Indian Charlie, a son of In Excess out of Leo Castelli mare Soviet Sojourn, only made 5 starts but won the first 4, including the Santa Anita Derby in stakes record time, for owners Hal Earnhardt III and John R. Gaines Racing Stable. He finished third in the Kentucky Derby as the favorite, behind Real Quiet who was also trained by Bob Baffert in his only loss and what would be his final start. He was in training for the Haskell Invitational when he pulled a suspensory ligament and was retired. He won $616,120 in purse earnings over his short career.

He was named by Baffert after horse racing satirist Ed Musselman, who writes the Indian Charlie newsletter, which in turn was named for a long-time racetrack character who clocked workouts privately. Baffert said on hearing the news, "Very sad to hear that we lost Indian Charlie. Gave us all great memories. Great horse and sire. He just was a beautiful mover and had a great mind. He was so quiet and gentle and a beautiful horse. Conformation-wise, he was a beautiful horse, and he’s thrown that. Ever since he was a yearling, he was always a standout, even out in the field. I can remember him standing there. Brereton Jones was thinking about moving In Excess to his farm in Kentucky and one of the main reasons we told him, Mike Pegram and I, was we showed him this yearling and it was Indian Charlie."

Stallion Career:

Indian Charlie started at 1999 at Vinery Kentucky and stood his first four seasons at stud there for a fee of $10,000. In 2003 he was moved to Airdrie Stud where he has been ever since where his stud fee rose for six years in a row. It was scheduled to be $75,000 in 2012.

Indian Charlie sired three North American Champions: 2010 Juvenile champ Uncle Mo, 2007 Juvenile Filly champ Indian Blessing, and 2006 Older Female champ Fleet Indian. As well, he sired Canadian champion female sprinter Indian Apple Is, and 2010 Panamanian champion juvenile Indiano, who won the Grade 2 Carry Back at Calder. His top ten earners are: Indian Blessing ($2,995,420), Fleet Indian ($1,704,513), Uncle Mo ($1,606,000), Pampered Princess ($786,125), My Pal Charlie ($762,519), Two Trail Sioux ($664,960), Mr. Nightlinger ($644,355), Indian Apple Is ($531,760), Conveyance ($470,400), and Indyanne ($449,870).

At his death, his lifetime progeny earnings stood at $43,067,807, and he ranked 17th on the 2011 North American general sire list with $5,584,817 in earnings. He had 393 winners, including 65 stakes winners, from 542 starters in ten crops of racing age.

At the time of his death, two of his sons are considered early contenders for the 2012 Kentucky Derby: Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes runner-up Ever So Lucky, and Real Quiet Stakes winner Liaison.

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