Milton Toby

Taking Shergar: Thoroughbred Racing’s Most Famous Cold Case

It was a cold and foggy February night in 1983 when a group of armed thieves crept onto Ballymany Stud, near The Curragh in County Kildare, Ireland, to steal Shergar, one of the Thoroughbred industry’s most renowned stallions. Bred and raced by the Aga Khan IV and trained in England by Sir Michael Stoute, Shergar achieved international prominence in 1981 when he won the 202nd Epsom Derby by ten lengths—the longest winning margin in the race’s history. The thieves demanded a hefty ransom for the safe return of one of the most valuable Thoroughbreds in the world, but the ransom was never paid and Shergar’s remains have never been found. Toby examines the extensive cast of suspects and their alleged motives, including the Irish Republican Army and their need for new weapons, a French bloodstock agent who died in Central Kentucky, and even the Libyan dictator, Muammar al-Qadhafi.
Milton Toby
Milton C. Toby is an award-winning author, journalist, and attorney with more than forty years of experience researching and writing about Thoroughbred racing and equine law. He is the author of eight books, including Dancer’s Image: The Forgotten Story of the 1968 Kentucky Derby and Noor: A Champion Thoroughbred’s Unlikely Journey from California to Kentucky.

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