English Tristan And His Nemesis, Daily Racing Form, 1922-06-01


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ENGLISH TRISTAN AND HIS NEMESIS BY SALVATOR SALVATORNot Not long ago I contributed to Daily Racing Form a series of tables of American race horses which had scored either doubles or triples or both In important fixed events Special prominence was given to the few which had achieved triples there being only a handful of them Bonnie Lizzie Los Angeles Kingston Ben Holladay Roamer Billy Kelly and Exterminator Similar re ¬ sumes of similar exploits by English French and Australasian horses would doubtless produce interesting reading and perhaps at some future time may bo presented At pres ¬ ent however I would draw attention to what is without doubt the most unique in ¬ stance of a triple in racing history historyThis This Is the case of Tristan and the Cham ¬ pion Stakes at Newmarket This event was Inaugurated In 1877 and was run across the flat over a distance of a mile and a quarter plus seventythree yards but In 1900 was Increased to a mile and threequarters and transferred to the Cesarewitch course Its conditions limited it to three and four yearolds at ono time but otherwise horses of nil ages above two years have been eligible It is one of the features of the second October meeting at Newmarket NewmarketTVrN TVrN ERS OF CHA3IPIOX STAKES STAKESFrom From the outset It vis a championlike raco Springfield won the inaugural in 1877 and was followed by Jannette hi 1878 Rayon dOr in 1S79 and Roberc the Devil in 1880 while Roberts great rival Bend Or wow In 1SS1 Iroquois the Americanbred Derby winner of the previous year being third to him himIt It was In 1882 that a most sensational race occurred resulting in a dead heat be ¬ tween Tristan and Thebais both fouryear olds the former carrying 126 pounds and tho latter receiving from him but her three pounds sex allowance In 1883 Tristan came back winning by a short head from the threeyearold Ossian winner of that years St Leger with Dutch Oven tho St Leger winner of the previous year third In 1S84 the son of Hermit and Thrift by Stockwell essayed for a triple and for the second time in the three years ran a dead heat this time with Lucerne a fouryearold at even weights 126 pounds each It Is alto ¬ gether likely that this series of perform ¬ ances to date never paralleled will so re ¬ main In the case of each of the dead heats tho stakes were divided so Tristan ranks technically as thrice winner of the Cham ¬ pion Stakes though his victory was un ¬ equivocal on one occasion only onlyTristan Tristan which raced In the colors of Mr C J Lcfevro was unquestionably one of the best horses of his day but failed of genuine classic honors Ho won many grand races Including important fixtures but was a shade below the giants of his era such as St Simon Foxhall etc A celebrated English critic has summed him up as follows followsTJIISTANS TJIISTANS RACING CONSISTENCY CONSISTENCYTristan Tristan was one of the most consistent animals I have ever seen lie acts as a sort of key to tho form of classic horses for four years or more He ran fiftyfour races won twentynine times was second In thirteen and third in seven and was only five times unplaced once as a twoyearold when attempting to give Iroquois seven pounds in the Two Thousand Guineas and Derby only as a threeyearold and after ¬ ward in the July Cup and Cambridgeshire He not only won such different races as the July Cup and Ascot Cup but won the Hard wicke Stakes at Ascot Grand Prix at Deau vllle and Champion Stakes for three years la succession He had strangles between his twoyearold and threeyearold career which accounts for his tnpderate performances in the two classic Tabes alluded to and his tremendous improvement from three to four years He ran second twice to St Simon once giving three pounds to Barcaldine once to Clairvaux and was second best to St Gatien in the Gold Vase as Ascot all of them unbeaten horses at the time St Gatien was the only one ever beaten He also ran second to Foxhall in the Grand Prix de Paris Ho beat at different times tho following classic winners Iroquois twice Charibert afterward one of our best sprinters Bend Or Petronel Elizabeth Shotover Thebais Dutch Oven three times Ossian twice besides running third to Busybody Chippen ¬ dale which had the line of Silvio and Isonotny beat him after a hard season by a head in the Jockey Club Cup He also ran a dead heat with Thebais one of oui best Oaks winners winnersThe The most memorable race ever run by Tristan was his effort in the Paris Grand Prix in which after a terrific struggle Foxhall ridden by Fordham defeated him by a short head despite the most heroic exertions on the part of Archer who rode him It Is worth mention that each timo Foxhall and Tristan met the American horse was the victor Their second meeting was in the Select Stakes at Newmarket and their third in the Cambridgeshire It gives a line on the exalted class of Foxhall when it is stated that on that occasion he carried 126 pounds while Tristan with but 107 pounds up could do no better than third thirdThere There is another interesting aspect to the rivalry between Foxhall and Tristan That concerns their stud careers The failure of Foxhall as a sire when put to the stud in England has furnished a perennial text for the fulmination of English critics against American blood One prominent one declared that he had poisoned every mare wltn which he had been mated 1 Other similarly pleasant diatribes have been periodically printed for the past forty years and appar ¬ ently will continue to be till the end 01 time timeThe The failure of Foxhall to succeed at the stud In England is explained of course on the ground that ho was not pur sang He had various stains duo to his strains of native American blood not inscribed In the British Stud Boole And these of coursb were what did the business I ITMSTANS TMSTANS STUB FAILURE FAILUREBut But how are we to explain the fact that tha failure of Tristan as a sire was almost equally condign as that of Foxhall Mater ¬ nally Tristan came from tho Bruce Lowe No 10 family which showed Its ability as a sireproducer by giving to the world three such progenitors as Blair Athol Petrarch and Hampton and in Australia Fireworks Hence no immunity can be claimed for him by the figures on that score Retiring to the stud with the reputation of being ono of the best race horses of his day he natu ¬ rally was favored with many highclass mares his opportunity In this respect being far better than that of FoxhalL But his fail ¬ ure to beget winners was to all Intents and purposes dismal Not until 1893 when he was fifteen did he manage to gain a place on the list of the twenty leading sires of England and then he just made twentieth position In 1394 he succeeded by a narrow margin in finishing nineteenth In 1895 he dropped out of sight but in 1896 flared up for a momentary prominence to finish ninth owing to the fact that his daughter Canter ¬ bury Pilgrim that year won the Oaks Ho then disappeared forever so far as any other success of the kind Is concerned Indeed he was already dead before his solitary nota ¬ ble performer had appeared He had been weeded out of the British stud by tho favorite method of the British breeder L et dumping him on tho foreigners having been sold to Hungary where he died as the result of an accident in 1894 aged six ¬ teen with nobody in his native land to regret him it being considered there that he was one of the worst failures as a stock horse of any racer that in his time had been so grand a performer performerHIS HIS ONE WORTHY DAUGHTER DAUGHTERIn In Canterbury Pilgrim his daughter that won the Oaks of 1896 Tristan begot ons worthy scion for in addition to her racing fame when put to the stud she produced those two notable racers and present fash ¬ ionable English sires Chaucer and Swyn ford However the pedigree sharps hold the opinion that the merit of Canterbury Pilgrim was due to the fact that she was out of that distinguished matron Pilgrimage also the dam of the Derby winner of 1893 Jeddah etc etcNow Now as I have said how are we to account for the failure of Tristan as a sire On the amiable theory that Foxhall poi ¬ soned everything in England with which his blood was mixed although last season a strain to him appeared in the ancestry of a notable stake winner we might adopt the theory that he also poisoned everything he raced against On just one occasion when they raced together Foxhall and Tristan fin ¬ ished so closely that undoubtedly their hot breaths mixed That was in the Grand Prix when they passed the post cheekbyjowl Possibly on that occasion the aristocratically bred British sprig of pur sang inhaled willynilly some exhalations of the plebeian product of the States and this deadly in ¬ fection proved his undoing when in after years ho essayed the work of reproduction reproductionThis This is a theory which to a pur sang believer must appeal as both beautiful and logical It really explains everything and rightly considered relieves a splendid horse from a stigma undeserved transferring it where it properly belongs to the unspeak ¬ able Yankee with the poisonous pedigree

Persistent Link: https://drf.uky.edu/catalog/1920s/drf1922060101/drf1922060101_12_1
Local Identifier: drf1922060101_12_1
Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800