Racing News

Princess Arabella retired with injury

  • Princess Arabella (Sunland/Coady Photography)

Peachtree Stable's undefeated Princess Arabella, who would have been a major contender in the Kentucky Oaks, has been retired due to injury.

Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert revealed the news on HRTV Thursday.

"Unfortunately, Princess Arabella came back with a small soft tissue problem that was going to need six or seven months off, so we decided in her best interest to retire her," Baffert said.

Baffert added that Princess Arabella has "a little ligament damage," and that she's not lame, but would be unlikely to be able to compete at the same high level again.

A perfect three-for-three in her brief career, Princess Arabella turned heads in her December 31 debut at Santa Anita, where she cruised to a 3 1/2-length decision.

After an easy allowance score at the same venue February 12, she stretched out to two turns and dominated the March 25 Sunland Park Oaks by eight lengths.

Princess Arabella was so well regarded that she was also nominated to the Triple Crown.

"It's a shame because she was such a brilliant filly, and we were really looking forward to a bog Kentucky Oaks run," Baffert said.

"All of her races were so effortlessly run. It's a big blow to the Baffert barn cause they're so hard to come by, to get a freaky filly like this.

"The talent was just amazing."

Baffert believed that Princess Arabella was better than Plum Pretty, last year's Kentucky Oaks winner, who is also owned by John Fort's Peachtree Stables.

Fort still has another 2012 Oaks contender in Mamma Kimbo, who extended her record to two-for-two in the Grade 2 Fantasy Stakes.

"She's going to have to carry the flag for the other filly (Princess Arabella)," Baffert said.