Surprise return for Starspangledbanner

Starspangledbanner is in line for a surprise return to racing after Coolmore Stud announced the champion sprinter has fertility problems.

“Owing to ongoing fertility issues which have not improved as much as hoped, it was decided not to shuttle Starspangledbanner to the southern hemisphere for the upcoming breeding season,” Coolmore said in a statement on Tuesday.  “A decision on his future will be made later this month but it is possible that he may go back into training at Ballydoyle.”

Starspangledbanner (Choisir) was a champion sprinter of Australia and Europe.  Having run his rivals ragged in the G1 Caulfield Guineas over 1600m, he displayed blistering speed to outsprint older rivals in the G1 Oakleigh Plate at 1100m.

He travelled to England in 2010 to take the G1 Golden Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot and G1 July Cup at Newmarket.  “Starspangledbanner is an incredible horse,” O’Brien claimed.  “The fastest we’ve ever had at Ballydoyle.”

Starspangledbanner originally bowed out with a fading fifth in the G1 Haydock Sprint Cup in September 2010.