Rock Hard Ten Dies Suddenly In Korea At Age 20 - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report
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Rock Hard Ten Dies Suddenly In Korea At Age 20

Rock Hard Ten, a multiple Grade 1 winner and veteran sire, died suddenly Nov. 12, according to Korea Racing Authority records.

The 20-year-old son of Kris S. stood at the KRA's Jeju Stud Farm, the operation's primary stallion station.

Through the KRA's Alastair Middleton, the farm issued the following statement to the Paulick Report:

“Rock Hard Ten was observed unable to stand in his paddock. He was moved to the equine hospital where he underwent treatment but he sadly died within 24 hours.”

Bred in Kentucky and raced by Madeline Paulson, and later co-owned by Mercedes Stables, Rock Hard Ten debuted in February of his 3-year-old campaign, and finished third in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby in his third start. He then finished second to Smarty Jones in the 2005 Preakness Stakes and fifth in the Belmont Stakes before notching his first graded win in the G2 Swaps Breeders' Cup Stakes at Hollywood Park.

Rock Hard Ten's 3-year-old season ended with a victory in the G1 Malibu Stakes, which kicked off a four-race winning streak to finish his career. During his 4-year-old season, Rock Hard Ten won the G2 Strub Stakes, the G1 Santa Anita Handicap, and the G2 Goodwood Breeders' Cup Handicap. He retired with seven wins in 11 starts for earnings of $1,870,380.

After his racing career, Rock Hard Ten retired to Lane's End for the 2006 breeding season. He resided at the Versailles, Ky., farm until January 2013, when he was exported to Korea.

Rock Hard Ten has sired 13 crops of racing age, with 330 winners and combined progeny earnings in excess of $27 million.

His U.S.-sired runners were led by Grade 1 winner Nereid, Grade 2 winners Capital Plan and Doubles Partner, Grade 3 winners Summersault, Quality Rocks, and Black Onyx. and French Group 3 winner Abtaal.

He is also the sire of Tonito M., who was named Puerto Rico's champion 2-year-old colt in 2013, then was brought to the mainland U.S., where his career was highlighted by a victory in the G3 Oklahoma Derby. Two-time Peruvian champion miler Arezzo was also sired by Rock Hard Ten during his time in the U.S.

Rock Hard Ten currently ranks 22nd on Korea's leading general sire list. He was 13th in 2020, and 10th in 2019, which were his two highest year-end positions to date.

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