Sires and Dams: Breeding of Yesterdays Derby Winners; Lexington, Leamington in Many Pedigrees; Reigh Count Performed a Unique Feat, Daily Racing Form, 1956-05-05


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Sires and Dams 1 By Nelson Dunstan Breeding of Yesterdays Derby Winners Lexington Leamington in Many Pedigrees Reigh Count Performed a Unique Feat FeatNEW NEW YORK N Y May 4 This eightysecond running of the Kentucky Derby is one of the most open since the event was inaugurated in 1875 Some one once said Turn back the universe and give me yesterday Not many present day fans will agree with that but it must be done if we are to review the breeding angle of this race which was worth 2850 to Aristides in 1875 and mushroomed to the 102050 gar ¬ nered by Determine in 1954 Like the Epsom Derby in England it is a race of the people but frqm its inception it has been a breed most invariably sent to stud if not a gelding One or every nine winners of the Louisville classic has been sired by horses who were first second or third in pre vous renewals In 1878 Himyar was second to Day Star and when sent to stud sired Plaudit winner in 1898 Scores of threeyearolds who were second or third went on to succssf ul stud careers To name but a few since 1930 Discovery Challedon Bimelech Alsab and Phalanx the latter being sire of Career Boy In the early years there were such stud titans as Leamington Lexington Virgil Australian and Glencoe and their sons and grandsons carried on when they passed on Aristides winner of the inaugural running in 1875 was a son of Leamington out of the Lexington mare Sarong SarongInaugural Inaugural Winner Aristides Started It ItLeamington Leamington and Lexington played important parts in Derby pedigrees From 1861 to 1874 14 successive years Lexington was Americas leading sire Leam ¬ ington toppled him from the throne in 1875 No sire has remotely approached Lexingtons record as a sire for he led the list 16 seasons in all Leamington was the head man on four occasions Lexington foaled in 1850 had passed from the picture in 1875 but his daughters produced the Derby winners Aristides Day Star Hindoo and Ben Ali and his granddaughters car ¬ ried on where they left off Sons of Lexington and Leamington begot many Derby winners The 1907 winner Pink Star was a grandson of the 1883 winner Leonatus and the tenth winner of the Louisville classic that traced in tailmale to the imported Leamington While the competition among sires was not what it was to become in the present century no two had sons and daughters who dominated the Derby scene in so many renewals as Leamington and Lexington It would be impossible for any one or two horses to compile the record that Lexington did in the years prior to the turn of the century Through the jears many changes occurred in the Derby picture as in so many other important stakes The distance timing and weight underwent alterations In 1906 the Derby was first timed in fifths of seconds instead of quarters In 1920 Paul Jones o gelding car ¬ ried 126 pounds to defeat colts carrying the same weight The previous year Sir Barton a son of the im ¬ ported Star Shoot carried the odd weight of Iizy2 pounds Going back to 1875 Aristides carried the feather of 100 pounds Sir Barton ran the distance in 209 over a heavy track and became the first Derby winner to go on and take the honors in the Preakness and Belmont Stakes In years following Sir Barton speed and more speed became more pronounced The plodder passed from the scene and speed sires were in greater demand than those who passed stamina on to their sons and daughters The Derby as it is today is one of the most severe tests that could be asked of a threeyearold running for the first time at one and onequarter miles In 1931 Twenty Grand ran the dis tance in 201 and in 1941 Whirlaway was clocked in 201The 201 The Classic If7 Stall Prevails PrevailsThe The Derby has as many ifs connected with it as other important stakes Hindoo winner in 1881 was the the sire of Hanover one of the best horses of his years Hanover could not be jnade ready for the Derby Han ¬ over was the sire of Halma winner in 1895 and he in turn was the sire of AlanADale That would have made four in direct male descent to win the Derby The best that has been done in that respect was by Reigh Count winner in 1908 He sired Count Fleet winner in 1943 who in turn sired Count Turf winner in 1951 It is possible for that feat to be equaled this year for Needles is the son of Ponder winner in 1949 and the latter is the son of Pensive who won in 1944 Ther are many other angles in Derby breeding that could be recorded but it would be impossible to cite them in a column of this length Sir Gallahad m distinguished himself as the sire of the winners Gallant Fox Gal lahadion and Hoop Jr while Gallant Fox was the sire of Omaha winner in 1935 On three occasions sons of foreign horses have been Derby winners the last of these being Pensive by Hyperion Hyperion was also sire of Hydroplane n the dam of Citation winner in 1948

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