Jump to: navigation, search

Kona Gold

Kona Gold
Sire Java Gold
Dam Double Sunrise
Grandsire Key To The Mint
Damsire Slew o'Gold
Gender Gelding
Foaled 1994
Country United States
Color Bay
Breeder Carlos Perez
Owner Headley, Molasky & High Tech
Trainer Bruce Headley
Record 30:14-7-2
Earnings $2,293,384
Kona Gold is a thoroughbred racehorse out of Double Sunrise by Java Gold. He was born around 1994 in the United States, and was bred by Carlos Perez.
Major wins

El Conejo Handicap (1999, 2003)
San Carlos Handicap (2000)
Bing Crosby Breeders' Cup Handicap
(2000, 2001)
Potrero Grande Breeders' Cup Handicap
(2000, 2001)
Palos Verdes Handicap (2000)
Ancient Title Breeders' Cup Handicap (2000)
Los Angeles Handicap (2002)

Breeders' Cup wins:
Breeders' Cup Sprint (2000)
U.S. Champion Sprinter (2000)
Horse (Equus ferus caballus)

Kona Gold (March 19, 1994–September 25, 2009) was an American Champion Thoroughbred racehorse.

Kona Gold was foaled at Carlos Perez's Twilite Farm outside LaGrange, Kentucky. He was sold as a yearling for $35,000 at the 1995 Keeneland September yearling sale to trainer Bruce Headley on behalf of a partnership that included Headley, Irwin and Andrew Molasky, and Michael Singh. Headley trained Kona Gold at his base in southern California, where the horse was brought along very patiently. Kona Gold suffered a few minor physical setbacks, including a knee chip as a three-year-old that kept him from the races until May of his four-year-old season in 1998.


Early Races

After a second-place finish in his debut at Hollywood Park Racetrack, Kona Gold won his next three races by a combined 28½ lengths. His first Graded stakes race (the Grade 3 Ancient Title Handicap at Santa Anita in which he finished 5th, beaten 2¼ lengths) was solid enough to earn him a trip to Churchill Downs for the 1998 Breeders' Cup Sprint. In only his 6th lifetime start, Kona Gold was most impressive, finishing 3rd and beaten only by two lengths.


Kona Gold returned in style in January 1999, setting a Santa Anita Park track record for 5½ furlongs in the El Conejo Handicap with a time of 1:01 3/5. (The runner-up Big Jag, who chased Kona in vain throughout the stretch, went on to trounce his field in the prestigious Dubai Golden Shaheen that March.) Kona Gold's four additional 1999 starts resulted in four runner-up finishes, never losing by more than 2 lengths. In his '99 finale (the Breeders' Cup Sprint), Kona Gold made up ground in the stretch but the wire came up just a stride too soon, and he fell short by a half-length to Artax who set a new Breeders' Cup Sprint stakes record and Gulfstream Park six-furlong track record of 1:07 4/5. Artax also won the Eclipse Award as champion sprinter of 1999.


Kona Gold's best year in racing was at age six in 2000. He capped off the year with a victory in the Breeders' Cup Sprint and was subsequently voted the American Champion Sprint Horse.

Kona Gold raced until he was 9 years old. After spending several years as a stable pony for former trainer Bruce Headley, Kona Gold became a permanent resident of the Kentucky Horse Park in 2008 after the death of John Henry.[1]


Kona Gold was euthanized on September 25, 2009, at the age of 15 after fracturing his left front leg while exercising in his paddock at the Kentucky Horse Park.[2]


External links


Premier Equine Classifieds


Subscribe to our newsletter and keep abreast of the latest news, articles and information delivered directly to your inbox.

Did You Know?

Modern horse breeds developed in response to a need for "form to function", the necessity to develop certain physical characteristics in order to perform a certain type of work... More...

The Gypsy Cob was originally bred to be a wagon horse and pulled wagons or caravans known as Vardos; a type of covered wagon that people lived in... More...

Archaeological evidence indicates that the Arabian horse bloodline dates back 4,500 years. Throughout history, Arabian horses spread around the world by both war and trade.... More...

That the term "Sporthorse" is a term used to describe a type of horse rather than any particular breed... More...