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Uncle Mo Retired

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2010 Breeders' Cup Juvenile champion Uncle Mo was retired from racing today following a blood test that revealed an elevated enzyme.  He finished 10th in Saturday's Breeders' Cup Classic. From the Daily Racing Form:

"The decision to retire Uncle Mo was made Sunday after blood tests showed that one of his enzymes, gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT), was elevated. This is the same enzyme that was elevated in the spring – knocking Uncle Mo out of the Triple Crown series – and led to the diagnosis of the liver disease, cholangiohepatitis."

The retirement of Uncle Mo is a disappointing end to a career that appeared to have endless promise just one year ago.  Following a dominate win in the Juvenile last fall, Uncle Mo was clearly the top two-year-old in the country and the early favorite for the Kentucky Derby.  But as happens many times in horse racing, things rarely remain the same.

The warning signs for Uncle Mo started early this year when it was announced he would by-pass the Tampa Bay Derby in order to run in a non-graded "stakes" race at Gulfstream Park, the Timely Writer.  After running what was essentially a paid workout, Mo stepped up to the big stage for his final Derby prep, the Wood Memorial. After a flat performance and a 3rd place finish, Uncle Mo was sent to Kentucky where his connections still intended to run him in the Derby.  However, during his preparations at Churchill he was diagnosed with the liver disease that would knock him out for the summer.

Uncle Mo returned to run very well in the seven furlong King's Bishop, which was followed by a big win in the Kelso Mile in his final prep for the Breeders' Cup.  The Classic, however, would prove to be too much for Uncle Mo.  With only one two-turn win under his belt, and none in the last year, Uncle Mo was a question mark at the distance of a mile and a quarter. After staling the early pace set by Game On Dude, Uncle Mo could find no more at the top of the Churchill Downs stretch and faded to 10th.  It would be the last race of his career.