Many long time race fans will recognize the name Alydeed as belonging to the dark bay colt who earned his place in Canadian racing history as the winner of the 133rd running of Canada’s premier race, the 1992 Queen’s Plate. Alydeed won the Plate in spectacular fashion, romping by 11 _ lengths as he ran away from the field in the final quarter mile. The impressive colt won five of 10 starts as a three-year-old including the Derby Trial (GII), the Marine Stakes (GIII), the Plate Trial stakes and the Plate. As a four-year-old, Alydeed won his first three races of the year including the Commonwealth Breeders’ Cup Stakes (GII) at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington and the Grade 1 Carter Handicap at New York’s Aqueduct Racetrack.
Alydeed was bred by the recently deceased Bob Anderson, a past Ontario president of the C.T.H.S. National Office, at Anderson Farms in St. Thomas, Ontario. The colt was out of the Alydar mare, Bialy whom Anderson bred to Shadeed – the 1985 British Champion miler – in 1988. In 1992, The Blood-Horse quoted Anderson as saying “I was a great fan of Shadeed. I thought he was a fabulous race horse, and I’m pleased he’s the one who’s given us something very special.”
Alydeed sold as part of the Three Chimneys Farm consignment in the 1990 Keeneland September yearling sale to David Willmot’s Kinghaven Farms for a final bid of $100,000 on the recommendation of trainer Roger Attfield and advisor Martin Burdett-Coutts. After concluding his career as a four-year-old with wins in nine of his 18 starts and lifetime earnings of $930,689, Alydeed was retired to stud at the prestigious Windfields Farm where he was Canada’s Leading Sire in 2001.
Among his most notable offspring are Primaly, the 1997 Canadian Champion Two-Year-Old Filly ($378,770, Princess Elizabeth Stakes, etc.) and Hedonist, winner of the Santa Anita Oaks (GI). Other notable runners include Quick in Deed ($395,156, Achievement Handicap, etc.), and Torrid Affair($367,829, Ontario Fashion Handicap, etc.) Alydeed has consistently been among the top sires in Canada since entering stud.
In September 2004, Windfields sold the leading sire to Jack and Linda Johnston’s Peaceful Valley Stable in Didsbury. At that time, the Johnstons were searching for a second stallion to stand after purchasing Dr. Adagio previously from Windfields. When a phone call from Windfields informed them that Alydeed was available, the Johnstons seized the chance to purchase the 15-year-old stallion and offer western Canada the opportunity to breed mares to such a quality horse. At that point in time, Alydeed had already sired 11 stakes winners and 14 stakes placed runners, plus the earners of $14.8 million.
The excitement of moving Alydeed to Peaceful Valley Stables was marred by the serious complications he suffered after making the journey west. Linda Johnston recalls that the van driver who transported Alydeed commented upon delivering him that he was lethargic and had not passed any manure on the trip. The Johnstons were immediately concerned and took him to the Moore & Company Veterinary Clinic near Balzac, Alberta. Dr. Mike Scott examined Alydeed and found a serious impaction in his colon. An operation to remove the impaction would have been risky as it was located near the spine and Jack Johnston recalls he was told there was ’tissue only the thickness of writing paper’ preventing the colon from rupturing. Dr. Scott and his associates put Alydeed on IV fluids and cleaned out by hand an amount of manure and straw out of him equivalent to a 45 gallon drum. There were two choices for treatment at that point: the first was to perform a colonoscopy which has a low success rate or the second option was to perform a very rare operation which involved cutting the sphincter muscle on the rectum. The Johnstons chose the second option with very successful results.
Alydeed spent a total of six weeks at the vet clinic recovering from the surgery. Three to four weeks were spent on a diet of strictly fruit to avoid further impaction problems; Linda says he “loves bananas still and gets an apple every day now and two peppermints at noon.”