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Alysheba was a bay Thoroughbred bred by Preston Madden at Hamburg Place in Lexington, he was by Alydar out of Bel Sheba, by Lt. Stevens. He was foaled on March 3, 1984 and was sold as a yearling to Dorothy and Pam Scharbauer who campaigned him under the guidance of Hall of Fame trainer, Jack Van Berg.

Alysheba won the 1987 Kentucky Derby (G1), Preakness Stakes (G1), Super Derby (G1), and an Eclipse Award as Champion 3-year-old colt. As a 4-year-old, he was even better, winning six Grade 1 stakes: the Strub Stakes, Santa Anita Handicap, Iselin Handicap, Woodward Stakes, Meadowlands Cup and the Breeders’ Cup Classic. He was ridden in 17 consecutive starts by Hall of Fame Jockey, Chris McCarron.

Alysheba is listed at #42 on The Blood-Horse magazine's list of the Top 100 U.S. Racehorses of the 20th century, one notch above another Kentucky Derby-winner, Northern Dancer.

His career highlights also included Horse of the Year honors and track records for 1 1/4 miles at Belmont and The Meadowlands. Along the way, he defeated Risen Star, Forty Niner, Bet Twice, Seeking the Gold, and another Kentucky Derby-winner, the ill-fated Ferdinand. Until two-time Horse of the Year Cigar came along, Alysheba was the world's richest Thoroughbred, with earnings of $6,679,242.

When his racing career concluded, he stood stud at Lane’s End Farm in Versailles, Ky. He was then sold in 2000 to His Majesty King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. In 2008, His Majesty King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia sent Alysheba to the Kentucky Horse Park as a gift to the American people. The park employees and visitors were very fond of Alysheba and his loving disposition.

On March 27, 2009 he was humanely euthanized at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute in Lexington, Ky. after sustaining a serious injury in his stall. He is buried at the Hall of Champions across from John Henry.