Co. Tyrone handler Andrew Oliver has stated “Panama Hat has been retired. He obtained a bad tendon injury two year ago and unfortunately it has returned worse after his recent run at Naas”.
The beautiful chestnut Panama Hat was owned by passionate Team Valor and looked to have little or no ability in the early days after failing to even place in five starts as a two-year-old in 2013, but a gelding operation during the winter break unquestionable changed the horse completely.
Panama Hat was victorious in five races during a two-month period the following summer, while in 2015, he won the Listed Lenebane Stakes at Roscommon, the Group Three Diamond Stakes at Dundalk and was runner-up in the lucrative American St Leger at Arlington Park.
Following a two-year absence, the son of Medicean returned to competitive action with a credible second placed finish at Naas in July, but that has evidently proved to be his final race
“He has been my favourite horse because of where he took us. He was difficult to train and we had to do his wind and geld him as a three-year-old “When we changed tactics and sent him off in front he won five handicaps in a row. “He went from rated 60 to 108 and was then beaten a neck into second at the Curragh. It would have been unprecedented to win six in a row. “We’ll maybe try racehorse-to-riding with him.” added trainer Andy Oliver.