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Friday, November 05, 2004Contact: Bob Curran Jr. (212) 521-5326
Red Sox Fan Hoping to Hit Grand Slam with Aptly Named Thoroughbred

The Boston Red Sox four-game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals in last month’s World Series not only provided Red Sox fans with their first championship in 86 years but also effectively ended “The Curse of the Bambino” which had haunted the franchise since it sold Babe Ruth’s contract to the New York Yankees in 1920.

One longtime Red Sox fan – Don Little, Jr. of Ipswich, Mass. -- celebrated the championship in his own unique way: by naming one of his young Thoroughbreds Curse Reversed. The yearling (one-year-old) colt is by the stallion Grand Slam out of the mare Trick of the Eye and was purchased for $180,000 at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale in Lexington, Ky. this fall.

Little is president of Centennial Farms Management Company, Inc. which organizes Thoroughbred racing partnerships. He also knows a thing or two about championships: Centennial Farms campaigned 1992 champion sprinter Rubiano and 1993 Belmont Stakes winner Colonial Affair, among others.

According to Little – whose loyalty to the Red Sox has caused many “nightmares and anxieties over the years” -- employees suggested a couple of names for the colt prior to the Red Sox championship run, but the manner in which the team won the title (coming back from a 3-game deficit against the Yankees before sweeping the Cardinals in the World Series) made naming the horse easy.

“My wife and I were at home watching the World Series and we had the pedigrees of our young horses out in front of us,” said Little. “The name Curse Reversed just fit perfectly because he is by Grand Slam and is one of the fancier individuals in the partnership we’re putting together.”

Several other Red Sox-inspired names have been approved in the past two weeks by The Jockey Club’s Registry in Lexington, Ky. They include: Red Sox Parade, Sweep the Series, Bambino’s Curse and Walkoff Homer.

The Jockey Club is the breed registry for North American Thoroughbreds and has the final say in approving Thoroughbred names. The Registry approves approximately 40,000 names each year, a number of which tend to be sports-related.

“Many Thoroughbred owners and breeders are also sports fans so it’s not uncommon for them to pay tribute to their favorite teams, especially when the horse’s pedigree lends itself to the name, as with Curse Reversed,” said The Jockey Club’s registrar Rick Bailey.

Curse Reversed is currently in training at Centennial Farms in Middleburg, Va. According to Little, the colt will be sent next year to a New York-based trainer employed by Centennial to begin his racing career in Yankee country.