Holly Hughes Youngest to Train Derby Winner: Oldtimers Recall 16 When George Smith Took Classic, Daily Racing Form, 1950-05-06


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Holly Hughes Youngest To Train Derby Winner Oldtimers Recall 16 When George Smith Took Classic CHURCHILL DOWNS, Louisville, Ky., May 5. — Holly Hughes was the youngest trainer who ever saddled a Derby winner. He clinched the girths on George Smith when that son of Out of Reach and Con-suello n. carried the gold and purple stripes of the late John Sanford, the Arm-sterdam, N. Y., carpet manufacturer, on Saturday, May 16, 1916. George Smith was ridden by Johnny Loftus and in a drive he scored by a neck over Star Hawk, owned by A. K. Macomber, while Franklin, the representative of Weber and Ward, was third, with Dodge, from the same menage fourth. George Smith stepped the distance in 2.04 over a fast track, Thunderer and Dominant, owned by the late Harry Payne Whitney, were the favorites in the race. George Smith was acquired from Edward McBride at a big price and his purchase is one of the unwritten epics of the turf. Preston Burch, who is now here training a brace of starters for the Brookmeade Stable of Mrs. Dodge Sloan, was manager of the Sanford Stable at the time. Burch and Sanford were inspecting a set of two-year-olds on the track when George Smith hove into sight. Burch turned to his employer and in an off-hand way remarked that there was a colt who would develop into the best three-year-old the following year. Mr. Sanford was all ears and immediately suggested that the colt be purchased. Burch scoffed at the idea stating that to his knowledge he was not for sale. However, the deal was consummated in October when George Smith showed a slight trace of lameness. George Smith was then shipped to Amsterdam to be rested and freshened up. Later in the winter he, along with other horses in the stable, was shipped to Charleston, S. C, where he was given his Derby prep. The son of Out of Reach stood his training in smart fashion and came up to his Derby engagement in superb condition. The rest is history. Holly Hughes, who did the training, was then only 26 years old, and the following year, 1917, answered the call to colors and joined the Army. He served in France and upon»his return :took? over the training of the Sanford Stable.

Persistent Link: https://drf.uky.edu/catalog/1950s/drf1950050601/drf1950050601_54_3
Local Identifier: drf1950050601_54_3
Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800