Don't expect to see American Pharoah race next year, whether or not he completes the Triple Crown on June 6 at Belmont.
Ahmed Zayat confirmed Wednesday morning on Twitter that he had sold the superstar colt's breeding rights to Ashford Stud, located in Versailles, the epicenter of central Kentucky's Bluegrass Country. Zayat told paulickreport.com it was "unlikely" that the Kentucky Derby-Preakness winner would remain in training in 2016.
"I am proud to announce that the new home of American Pharoah after he retires will be Ashford," Zayat tweeted.
Terms were not disclosed. On Tuesday, ESPN.com was the first to report the story.
Zayat said he would control the colt's racing career until the end of this year, after which he, Ashford, any other potential partners and trainer Bob Baffert would make a collective decision on whether to retire him.
Zayat told paulickreport.com there are incentives in the deal, such as if American Pharoah won the 1-mile Belmont Stakes to become the first Triple Crown champion since 1978. Other bonuses would kick in if he won other million-dollar races such as the Haskell, Travers and Breeders' Cup Classic and if he were voted Horse of the Year.
American Pharoah was bred in Kentucky by Zayat, who also bred his sire, 2011 Derby runner-up Pioneerof the Nile. The 2014 2-year-old champion is 6-for-7, including six consecutive graded-stakes victories by a combined 30 lengths. He has earned more than $3.7 million since debuting last summer with a fifth-place finish at Del Mar.
For the past 14 years, Ashford has been the home of 2000 Kentucky Derby winner Fusaichi Pegasus, whose reported syndication price of between $55 million and $60 million is a record.
Dermot Ryan, Coolmore's manager, said in a statement: "Whatever happens in the Belmont, American Pharoah is an outstanding sire prospect, and we're very grateful to the Zayat family for entrusting us with his stallion career."
Ashford Stud, also known as Coolmore America, is the United States base of Ireland's Coolmore group, the world's most powerful breeding and racing empire. It also has stud farms in Ireland and Australia.
Light jog on tap.Assistant trainer Jimmy Barnes said American Pharoah would go to the track Thursday for the first time since the Preakness by jogging lightly at Churchill Downs.