Add Rock Your World to the 2022 first-year stallion crop after the Santa Anita Derby winner was suddenly retired from racing on Monday.

Rock Your World-retirement
Three days after this workout, Rock Your World finished sixth of eight in the Belmont Stakes. He retired Monday with three wins in seven races, but none since winning the Santa Anita Derby in April. (Image: Janet Garaguso/Coglianese Photos)

The son of standout sire Candy Ride will stand at Spendthrift Farm for $10,000. Spendthrift General Manager Ned Toffey said he’ll be featured in the farm’s “Share The Upside” breeding program for 2022. Under that program, breeders pay $12,500 for a two-year commitment. They must breed a mare for 2022 and 2023 and have two foals. After the second live foal arrives in 2024, that breeder earns a lifetime breeding right to Rock Your World.

“Rock Your World is a fast Santa Anita Derby winner with a wonderful blend of looks, pedigree, and sire power,” Toffey said in a statement. “He’s a $650,000 yearling and you can see why. He’s one imposing individual and as good-looking a Candy Ride as you’ll find. Rock Your World possesses a true classic dirt pedigree, with Empire Maker and Giant’s Causeway as his first two broodmare sires. We believe there is a lot to like.”

There was a lot to like about Rock Your World out of the gate. He won his first three races, opening 2021 with a six-furlong maiden special weight score on New Year’s Day. He followed that with a victory in the one-mile Pasadena Stakes on the Santa Anita grass in late February.

From turf to the dirt — to the Derby

Trainer John Sadler decided to start Rock Your World in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby, shaking off any doubts about his lack of dirt experience. The powerfully built colt shook off all contenders, winning by 4 ¼ lengths. The accompanying 100 Beyer Speed Figure was the only triple-digit Beyer in this year’s Kentucky Derby field.

That Santa Anita Derby was Rock Your World’s high-water racing mark. He never won another race in four more starts. That included a 17th in the Derby, a sixth in the Belmont, and a ninth (out of 10) as the 1.30/1 favorite in the Oct. 31 Grade 2 Twilight Derby.

Sandwiched among those subpar finishes was a strong second by 1 ¼ lengths to Medina Spirit in the Listed Shared Belief Stakes at Del Mar in August.

Rock Your World left unrealized potential

A $650,000 purchase at the 2019 Keeneland September Yearling Sale, Rock Your World heads to the breeding shed with earnings of $612,100. He retires with a 3-1-0 record in seven starts and a feeling of unfulfilled promise. Out of the multiple stakes-winning mare Charm the Maker, Rock Your World’s first three dams were either multiple stakes winners or graded stakes winners.

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