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Arabian Lion, G1 winner by Justify, retires to Spendthrift

October 20, 2023

Arabian Lion is the first G1 winner by Triple Crown winner Justify to retire to stud | NYRA photo

Arabian Lion is the first G1 winner by Triple Crown winner Justify to retire to stud | NYRA photo

Leading 3-year-old Arabian Lion, who became Justify’s first Grade 1 winner after capturing this year’s Woody Stephens S. (G1) at Belmont, has been retired from racing and will enter stud at Spendthrift Farm for the 2024 breeding season. His introductory fee will be $30,000 S&N.

“Arabian Lion is a tremendous-looking individual and he showed real brilliance on the track. His win in the Grade 1 Woody Stephens was arguably the best performance this year by a 3-year-old, and the speed figures back that up,” said Ned Toffey, Spendthrift general manager. “We are grateful to Mr. Zedan for the opportunity to stand another one of his stars. He and his team have obviously done a great job of acquiring and racing the best of the best, and those are the type of stallion prospects we are looking to stand at Spendthrift.”

Campaigned by Zedan Racing Stables, Arabian Lion broke his maiden by three lengths on debut as a 2-year-old at Santa Anita, running six furlongs in 1:09.78. He was named as a “Rising Star” by the Thoroughbred Daily News after the performance. As a 3-year-old, the powerfully built chestnut colt stretched out around two turns and was a narrow runner-up to First Mission in the Lexington S. (G3) at Keeneland, before decisively capturing the Sir Barton Stakes by four lengths on the Preakness undercard a month later at Pimlico, earning a 103 Beyer.

Arabian Lion showed his versatility by turning back to one turn in the prestigious Woody Stephens on Belmont Stakes Day, running seven furlongs in 1:21.70 and earning a 109 Beyer – the second fastest Beyer by a sophomore to date in 2023.

Arabian Lion retires as Triple Crown winner Justify’s first Grade 1 winner entering stud, with earnings of $498,100 for trainer Bob Baffert and Zedan Racing. The colt was purchased for $600,000 at the 2022 OBS April Sale for 2-year-olds in training after breezing an eighth of a mile in 10 seconds flat. Out of the stakes-placed Distorted Humor mare Unbound, Arabian Lion hails from one of the Phipps’ top families, as his third dam is the great race mare and producer, Personal Ensign.

For more information about Arabian Lion or to set up an appointment for inspection, please contact Des, Mark, Brian or Daniel at 859-294-0030, or visit