(2-22-23) Horse racing around the world and US does not allow for cloning of horses, for either racing or breeding.

Why did they decide to clone the show jumping stallion in the tweet above, Pacino, who died in 2013 of kidney failure at the age of nine?

In The Irish Field article Hilton View’s Clem McMahon said –

After several failed attempts…Pacino II was cloned using skin cells from Pacino in Argentina in 2019 and was foaled in 2020 in County Monaghan, Ireland at Hilton View Stud. Cloned Show Horse Jumpers have been eligible (Irish Sport Horse Studbook) to compete since 2012.

In great demand Pacino II will start his stud career this April.

The ‘original’ Pacino-

Clem. McMahon (IRL) & Pacino – 2012 Aga Khan, Dublin Horse Show

Mark R. CuthbertYou Tube Video

Could cloning be in the future for thoroughbred racing? The odds of that happening is most likely 0%. Technology (which is very expensive) is there for the process and we know it works by the information in the above article.

Quarter horse racing has gone to court over the issue – In a ruling of international significance in the horse industry, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on January 14 (2015), overturned an earlier court decision that found the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) violated antitrust laws by barring cloned quarter horses from its registry. The ruling means that the AQHA will not have to register cloned quarter horses.

After the ruling in 2015 James Gagliano, the president and chief operating officer of The Jockey Club told Thoroughbred Daily News

“We’re very pleased with the result and we want to congratulate our friends at the American Quarter Horse Association for their excellent defense. It was the right decision and it was a just decision.”

“For us, nothing in this ruling indicates that our rules need to be examined for changed. A foal resulting from cloning is not and will not be eligible for registration with The Jockey Club. This ruling is very supportive.” 

Arabian horse racing and the International Federation for Equestrian Sports do allow cloned horses to participate.

Are there any advantages to cloning a race horse? Clones from a top-winning gelding would provide the opportunity to produce foals from the clone…since semen is not used to clone, but instead skin cells are used to make the clone just like Pacino II in the above stories. The option brings a new way to continue that bloodline.

Late in 2022 Spendthrift Farms lost a new young and upcoming stallion ‘Code Of Honor‘ who had to be euthanized due to an irreparable bout of colic. His first and only group of foals were born in 2023. Had cloning been a viable option the investment made in him could be continued in the future to hopefully produce more of his offspring. But that won’t happen.

The current cost of cloning is quite costly…those who decide to go that route would most likely have to have something special in mind.

Check out – Nole Ksum Racing Stable