Shergar (3 March 1978 – c. February 1983) was an Irish-bred, British-trained Thoroughbred racehorse. After a very successful season in 1981 he was retired to the Ballymany Stud in County Kildare, Ireland. In 1983 he was stolen from the stud, and a ransom of £2 million was demanded; it was not paid, and negotiations were soon broken off by the thieves. In 1999 a supergrass, formerly in the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA), stated they stole the horse. The IRA has never admitted any role in the theft.
The Aga Khan, Shergar’s owner, sent the horse for training in Britain in 1979 and 1980. Shergar began his first season of racing in September 1980 and ran two races that year, where he won one and came second in the other. In 1981 he ran in six races, winning five of them. In June that year he won the 202nd Epsom Derby by ten lengths—the longest winning margin in the race’s history. Three weeks later he won the Irish Sweeps Derby by four lengths; a month after that he won the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes by four lengths. In his final race of the year he came in fourth, and the Aga Khan took the decision to retire him to stud in Ireland.
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