|Breeder||Marylou Whitney Stables|
|Owner||Marylou Whitney Stables|
|Birdstone is a thoroughbred racehorse out of Dear Birdie by Grindstone. He was born around 2001 in the United States, and was bred by Marylou Whitney Stables.|
American Classic Race wins:|
Belmont Stakes (2004)
|NTRA "Moment of the Year" (2004)|
|Horse (Equus ferus caballus)|
|Last updated on June 18, 2007|
Owned and bred by Marylou Whitney of Whitney family racing fame, Birdstone had won the Champagne Stakes, a leading race for two-year-olds, at Belmont Park in 2003, but had not been a factor in the first two Triple Crown races (finishing eighth in the Kentucky Derby and skipping the Preakness Stakes) and was a 36-1 longshot when he upset the overwhelmingly favored Smarty Jones, taking the lead in the final furlong (201 m).
His sire Grindstone won the Kentucky Derby in 1996, and was a son of Unbridled, who had done the same in 1990. Unbridled was in turn sired by Fappiano, a son of Mr. Prospector, the tail-male ancestor of the vast majority of winners of Triple Crown races in recent years (22 out of the 24 races 1998-2005).
Birdstone's victory represented the first in the Belmont for trainer Nick Zito, whose horses had finished second in that classic five times. In the Winners Circle after the Belmont Stakes, his owners actually apologized to the connections of Smarty Jones for winning, as did jockey Edgar Prado.
According to the New York Times, the next major target for Birdstone was the Travers Stakes, which he won despite being the fourth choice at 5-1. He was Zito's first Travers champion.
His first starter was the colt Shoe Strap (Birdstone - Boot Strap by Storm Boot) who went to post first May 21, 2008 at Churchill Downs and is trained by D. Wayne Lukas. He also sired Mine That Bird, who had several wins as a two-year-old gelding before winning the 2009 Kentucky Derby as a three-year-old and Summer Bird, who went on to upset Mine That Bird in the 2009 Belmont Stakes, and repeated his sire's feat by winning the Travers also. Summer Bird then went on to capture the 2009 Jockey Club Gold Cup.
He was one of the top ten ranked freshman sires of 2008 with 11 winners out of 22 starters and stood for $10,000 for the remainder of the 2009 season, despite his first crop success. Birdstone has been booked for all of his 2010 stud career. His 2010 stud fee has been posted as $30,000.