Strike The Tiger with his former work rider, Mike Clark.

Trainer Ward loses three horses in fire

Strike the Tiger, trainer Wesley Ward’s first winner at Royal Ascot, was one of three horses who died Sunday in a barn fire in Lexington, Ky.

Ward said that the fire was at a Lexington barn he owns, and it was started by a lightning strike. He said investigators from the Lexington Fire Department told him lightning hit a service pole that fed into the barn. Keeneland had been closed earlier because of thunderstorms in the area, and Ward was at home at the time. He said the fire started at about 12:50 p.m. EST.

Strike the Tiger was a 15-year-old horse who won the 2009 Windsor Castle for Ward at 33-1. “He’s the pony that goes over there every year,” Ward said.

Last month 12 Royal Ascot trophies were stolen from Ward’s home in nearby Versailles, Ky. Ward said Sunday that he had not heard of any progress in recovering the trophies.

But the fire, he said, was “100 times worse than losing those damn trophies, I’ll tell you that.” – Horse Racing Nation.

Photo: Strike The Tiger with former work rider, Mike Clark.

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