- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 9, 2014

One of thoroughbred’s most heralded horses, Cigar, died at the age of 24, Kentucky Horse Park officials said.

Cigar, who’s twice won Horse of the Year recognition, died shortly after surgery at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital, Sport24 reported.

“Cigar had been experiencing arthritis-related health issues over the past six months and was in outstanding physical and mental condition other than the osteoarthritis he was suffering from in several of his cervical vertebrae,” said Kathy Hopkins, director of equine operations at the park, Sport24 reported.

She went on: “Medical therapies had failed to relieve the pressure that the arthritis was causing on his spine, which had resulted in instability in his hind legs.”

Cigar won 16 races in a row between October 1994 and July 1996, including the first Dubai World Cup in 1996, Sport24 reported.

“The great champion Cigar thrilled racing fans and surely brought new ones to the sport as he compiled win after win in his incredible streak of victories,” said Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear, Sports24 reported. “An example of racing at its best, he continued to serve as an ambassador, bringing joy to countless visitors to the Hall of Champions at the Kentucky Horse Park, where he will be missed.”

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