from a Maryland Thoroughbred Hall of Fame release
The first Maryland-bred Breeders’ Cup Classic-G1 winner, Concern made a career of heart-stopping, gritty performances while amassing $3,079,350 over three seasons of competition.[boxify cols_use =”3″ cols =”5″ position =”right” order =”none” box_spacing =”5″ padding =”3″ background_color =”GRAY” background_opacity =”10″ border_width =”1″ border_color =”BLUE” border_style =”dashed” ]CONCERN FACTBOOK
- Race record: 30-7-7-11, earnings of $3,079,350
- Career highlights: 1994 Breeders’ Cup Classic winner, 1995 Grade 1 Californian winner, 3rd in 1994 Preakness
- Breeding: Broad Brush-Fara’s Team, by Tunerup, bred in Maryland by Robert Meyerhoff
- For more: Concern’s page at the Maryland Thoroughbred Hall of Fame[/boxify]
A product of leading Maryland breeder Robert E. Meyerhoff’s astute selection process, Concern was born on February 14, 1991, at Meyerhoff’s Fitzhugh Farm in Phoenix, Md., a son of Meyerhoff’s homebred Broad Brush (MTHOF member of 2013) out of Grade 1 Test Stakes winner Fara’s Team. Trained by Richard (Dickie) Small, who also trained Broad Brush, Concern was stakes-placed at 2, but didn’t come into his own until gaining his first stakes win in the Grade 2 Arkansas Derby in the spring of his 3-year-old season. That race propelled him into classic contention, as he rallied spectacularly from last, as many as 15 lengths off the pace, to win in the final strides.
Concern’s Maryland-based connections chose to pass on the Kentucky Derby and hold out for the Preakness Stakes-G1. Outrun for more than three-quarters of a mile while last of 10 that May day at Pimlico, the dark bay colt rallied seven wide in the stretch and got up for third behind winner Tabasco Cat and Kentucky Derby-G1 hero Go for Gin.
That became the pattern for much of his sophomore season — usually the bridesmaid, rather than the bride.
Among his most famous efforts was his narrow defeat to division champ Holy Bull in the Grade 1 Travers. Joined by rider Jerry Bailey for the first time, Concern was nearly 22 lengths behind the frontrunning Holy Bull in the early stages before launching his bid. Concern pulled within four lengths with a quarter mile to go — announcer Tom Durkin calling, “There is cause for Concern” — and continued to cut into the margin down the stretch. The two raced as a team to the wire, with Holy Bull holding on to score by a desperate neck. Preakness-Belmont winner Tabasco Cat finished third, 17 lengths back.
After two more starts, Concern went off as the fourth-betting choice in the field of 14 at the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Once again, he made his patented late move — but this time it was enough. Rallying six wide heading into the stretch, he flew down the middle of the track and caught Tabasco Cat in the final yards to win by a neck, with announcer Tom Durkin calling, “Concern from out of the clouds.”
During 1994, Concern ran 14 times, finishing in the trifecta all 14, and earned $2,541,670, the most of any horse to compete exclusively in North America. He was runner-up for the 3-year-old Eclipse Award to Holy Bull (who also was named Horse of the Year). And he earned more money in a single season than any Maryland-bred in history, while earning Maryland-bred Horse of the Year honors.
As a four year-old, he added another Grade 1 win — in the Californian — and a triumph in the Grade 3 New Orleans to his ledger. But he spent much of the year chasing another member of the Maryland Thoroughbred Hall of Fame, Cigar.
Concern retired to Northview Stallion Station as the richest runner to enter stud in the state. He later moved to Oklahoma Equine Thoroughbred Stallions in 2004, where he now resides as a pensioner.