Sheikh Mohammed purchased Jonabell from John A. and Jessica Bell III in 2001 and Holy Bull, Horse of the Year and champion three-year-old of 1994, was included with the acquisition.
Holy Bull distinguished himself as one of the top horses of his crop right from the word go, winning all four of his starts as a two-year-old, including the G1 Futurity Stakes.
As a three-year-old, Holy Bull once again proved that he was something special. He won eight of 10 starts that year, including six victories at the highest level – Travers Stakes, Woodward Stakes, Florida Derby, Metropolitan Handicap, Haskell Invitational Handicap. He was voted North America’s Eclipse Horse of the Year and Champion three-year-old of 1994.
At four, he won his first start before heading to the G1 Donn Handicap where he was sent off as the favorite over eventual Horse of the Year Cigar. The two travelled in tandem onto the backstretch but tragically, Holy Bull was pulled up after suffering a career-ending injury to a tendon in his left front leg.
Holy Bull went onto achieved considerable success at stud, having stood at Jonabell Farm after his retirement then for Sheikh Mohammed until he was pensioned in 2012. His offspring include 2005 G1 Kentucky Derby winner Giacomo, Eclipse Champion and G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner Macho Uno, G1 Stephen Foster Handicap winner Flashy Bull and a host of other Graded winners.
Holy Bull still remains a firm favorite year after year and has many devoted followers who still make an annual pilgrimage to the farm to see “The Bull”.