Fairway (horse)

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Fairway

Fairway (horse).jpg

Fairway circa 1929
Sire Phalaris
Grandsire Polymelus
Dam Scapa Flow
Damsire Chaucer
Sex Stallion
Foaled 1925
Country United Kingdom
Colour Brown
Breeder Lord Derby
Owner Lord Derby
Trainer George Lambton
Frank Butters
Record 15: 12-1-0
Earnings £ 42,722
Major wins
Coventry Stakes (1927)
July Stakes (1927)
Champagne Stakes (1927)
Eclipse Stakes (1928)
St Leger (1928)
Champion Stakes (1928), (1929)
Jockey Club Cup (1929)
Princess of Wales's Stakes (1929)

Fairway (19251946) was a British Thoroughbred racehorse and sire. Fairway was the best horse of his generation in Britain at two, three and four years old, winning the St Leger Stakes, the Champion Stakes (twice) and the Eclipse Stakes. He retired as a five-year-old in 1930 and went on to become a successful and influential sire.

Thoroughbred Horse breed developed for racing

The Thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. Although the word thoroughbred is sometimes used to refer to any breed of purebred horse, it technically refers only to the Thoroughbred breed. Thoroughbreds are considered "hot-blooded" horses that are known for their agility, speed, and spirit.

The St Leger Stakes is a Group 1 flat horse race in Great Britain open to three-year-old thoroughbred colts and fillies. It is run at Doncaster over a distance of 1 mile, 6 furlongs and 115 yards, and it is scheduled to take place each year in September.

Champion Stakes Flat horse race in Britain

The Champion Stakes is a Group 1 flat horse race in Great Britain open to thoroughbreds aged three years or older. It is run at Ascot over a distance of 1 mile and 2 furlongs, and it is scheduled to take place as part of British Champions Day each year in October.

Contents

Background

Lord Derby Edward George Villiers Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby by Sir William Orpen.jpg
Lord Derby

Fairway was bred in England by his owner Lord Derby who also bred both of his parents. His sire Phalaris was an outstanding sprinter who went on to become the most influential stallion of the 20th Century. [1] His dam, Scapa Flow, also produced Fairway’s sister Fair Isle who won the 1000 Guineas and his brother Pharos who finished second in The Derby and sired Nearco.

Edward Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby British politician

Edward George Villiers Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby,, styled Mr Edward Stanley until 1886, then The Hon Edward Stanley and then Lord Stanley from 1893 to 1908, was a British soldier, Conservative politician, diplomat, and racehorse owner. He was twice Secretary of State for War and also served as British Ambassador to France.

Phalaris (horse) British bred Thoroughbred racehorse

Phalaris (1913–1931) was a British bred Thoroughbred racehorse, later a Leading sire in Great Britain and Ireland and a Leading broodmare sire in Great Britain & Ireland. He appears in the sireline of all racehorses which were winners of more than $10 million.

Fair Isle was a British Thoroughbred racehorse and broodmare. She was the top-rated juvenile filly in England in 1929 when she won three of her five races, namely the Champion Breeders' Foal Plate, Buckenham Post Produce Stakes and Bretby Stakes. In the following year she won the 1000 Guineas and Midsummer Stakes as well as finishing fourth in the Epsom Oaks and third in the Champion Stakes. All but one of Fair Isle's wins came at Newmarket Racecourse. As a broodmare, the best of her foals was the Queen Anne Stakes winner St Magnus.

As a two-year-old, Fairway was trained by George Lambton at Lord Derby's Stanley House stable at Newmarket, Suffolk. When Lambton became Lord Derby’s racing manager at the end of 1927, Frank Butters took over as the colt’s trainer. [2] He was ridden in most of his races by Lord Derby's Dewsbury-born stable jockey Thomas "Tommy" Weston. [3]

George Lambton British horse trainer

George Lambton was a British thoroughbred racehorse trainer. He was British flat racing Champion Trainer in the 1906, 1911 and 1912 seasons.

Newmarket, Suffolk market town in Suffolk, England

Newmarket is a market town in the English county of Suffolk, approximately 65 miles north of London. It is generally considered the birthplace and global centre of thoroughbred horse racing and a potential World Heritage Site. It is a major local business cluster, with annual investment rivalling that of the Cambridge Science Park, the other major cluster in the region. It is the largest racehorse training centre in Britain, the largest racehorse breeding centre in the country, home to most major British horseracing institutions, and a key global centre for horse health. Two Classic races, and an additional three British Champions Series races are held at Newmarket every year. The town has had close royal connections since the time of James I, who built a palace there, and was also a base for Charles I, Charles II, and most monarchs since. The current monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, visits the town often to see her horses in training.

Dewsbury town in West Yorkshire, Britain

Dewsbury is a minster town in the Metropolitan Borough of Kirklees, in West Yorkshire, England. It is to the west of Wakefield, east of Huddersfield and south of Leeds. It lies by the River Calder and an arm of the Calder and Hebble Navigation.

Racing career

1927: two-year-old season

Fairway began his racecourse career when he ran unplaced in a maiden race at York in May. He won his remaining three races in 1927; the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot, the July Stakes at Newmarket Racecourse and the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster in September. By the time of his Doncaster win he was being talked of as a potential Derby winner. [4]

In horse racing a maiden race is an event for horses that have not won a race. Horses that have not won a race are referred to as maidens. Maiden horse races are held over a variety of distances and under conditions with eligibility based on the sex or age of the horse. Races may be handicaps, set weights, or weight for age. In many countries, maiden races are the lowest level of class and represent an entry point into a racing career. In countries such as the United States, maiden special weight races rank above claiming races, while maiden claiming races allow the horse to be claimed (bought) by another owner.

York Racecourse horse racing venue in England

York Racecourse is a horse racing venue in York, North Yorkshire, England. It is the third biggest racecourse in Britain in terms of total prize money offered, and second behind Ascot in prize money offered per meeting. It attracts around 350,000 racegoers per year and stages three of the UK's 36 annual Group 1 races – the Juddmonte International Stakes, the Nunthorpe Stakes and the Yorkshire Oaks.

Coventry Stakes

The Coventry Stakes is a Group 2 flat horse race in Great Britain open to two-year-old horses. It is run at Ascot over a distance of 6 furlongs, and it is scheduled to take place each year in June.

He sustained a minor injury in the last-named race however, and did not appear again that season. In the Free Handicap, he was rated the joint-best colt of the year. [5]

1928: three-year-old season

In the spring of 1928, Fairway developed a mouth abscess (or "boils" [6] ) which forced his late withdrawal [7] from the 2000 Guineas. He was then aimed at the Derby, running his trial in the Newmarket Stakes. Fairway impressed observers before the race and won very easily by two lengths after "sailing past" the strongly fancied Black Watch. [8] At Epsom Fairway was made favourite, but the highly-strung colt became upset by the huge crowd when going down to the start. He was never a threat in the race and finished ninth behind the 33/1 outsider Felstead. After the race, Tommy Weston said "he was beaten after six furlongs, probably because he had so much taken out of him before the actual start." [9]

Epsom Derby British Group 1 horse race for 3-year-olds over 1m 4f 10yds

The Derby Stakes, officially the Investec Derby, popularly known as the Derby, is a Group 1 flat horse race in England open to three-year-old thoroughbred colts and fillies. It is run at Epsom Downs Racecourse in Surrey over a distance of one mile, four furlongs and 6 yards, on the first Saturday of June each year.

Felstead (1925–1946) was a British Thoroughbred racehorse and sire. After failing to show any worthwhile form as a two-year-old he made exceptional improvement as a three-year-old to win the 1928 Epsom Derby at odds of 33/1 in record time. Soon after his win at Epsom, Felstead was injured in training and never ran again. He later had some success as a stallion.

Fairway returned to his best in the Eclipse Stakes at Sandown which he won by eight lengths from Royal Minstrel in record time [10] In September he started 7/4 favourite for the St Leger, despite concerns that, as the son of sprinter, he would lack the stamina for the one and three quarter mile race. He was ridden with great confidence by Weston, coming from well off the pace to take the lead in the closing stages and win by one and a half lengths from Palais Royal and Cyclonic [11] On his final start of the year he won the Champion Stakes at Newmarket by one and a half lengths "without being in any way hard pressed." [12]

1929: four-year-old season

At four, Fairway began with a one length win over three rivals in the Burwell Stakes at Newmarket [13] and then took the Rous Memorial Stakes at Royal Ascot. At the July meeting at Newmarket he won the Princess of Wales's Stakes to take his winning run to six. In his next race he started favourite for the Eclipse Stakes but failed to show his best form and was beaten four lengths by Royal Minstrel.

He was then off the course for three months before returning in October to win the Champion Stakes for the second time from Cyclonic. On his final start of the year he stepped up to two miles and a quarter to win the Jockey Club Cup, "cantering" to a three length victory over Palais Royal. [14]

1930: five-year-old season

Fairway was kept in training at five with the intention of winning the Ascot Gold Cup, but was retired without running after sustaining a tendon injury.

Assessment

At the end of his four-year-old season the Bloodstock Breeders' Review described Fairway as "far and away the best horse in England, and probably in the world." [15]

In their book A Century of Champions, John Randall and Tony Morris rated Windsor the thirty-fifth best horse of the 20th Century and the twelfth best to be trained in Britain. [15]

Stud career

Fairway stood as a stallion at the Woodlands Stud at Newmarket from 1931 until his death in November 1946. He was Champion sire four times [6] and sired the Classic winners Blue Peter, Watling Street, Pay Up, Kingsway, Garden Path and Tide-way. His most influential son however, was the Champion sire Fair Trial.

Pedigree

Pedigree of Fairway (GB), brown stallion, 1925
Sire
Phalaris (GB)
1913
Polymelus
1902 
Cyllene Bona Vista
Arcadia
Maid MarianHampton
Quiver
Bromus
1905 
Sainfoin Springfield
Sanda
Cheery St Simon*
Sunrise
Dam
Scapa Flow (GB)
1914
Chaucer
1900 
St Simon* Galopin
St Angela
Canterbury Pilgrim Tristan
Pilgrimage
Anchora
1905 
Love Wisely Wisdom
Lovelorn
EryholmeHazlehatch
Ayrsmoss(Family: 13-e)

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References

  1. "Phalaris". Tbheritage.com. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  2. "17th Earl of Derby". Horseracinghistory.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  3. "Thomas Weston". Horseracinghistory.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  4. "QUESTION OF PROCEDURE". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1927-11-15. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  5. Anne Peters. "Fairway". Tbheritage.com. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  6. 1 2 "Horseracing History Online - Horse Profile : Fairway". Horseracinghistory.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  7. "THE TWO THOUSAND". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1928-05-03. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  8. "NOT GOOD ENOUGH". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1928-06-28. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  9. "THE DERBY". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1928-07-18. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  10. "ECLIPSE STAKES". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1928-07-21. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  11. "THE ST. LEGER". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1928-10-25. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  12. "FAMOUS HORSES". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1929-08-31. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  13. "RACING FIXTURES". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1929-06-27. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  14. "JOCKEY CLUB CUP". Paperspast.natlib.govt.nz. 1929-11-01. Retrieved 2011-11-01.
  15. 1 2 Randall, J. and Morris, T., A Century of Champions, Portway Press, Halifax, 1999, p. 80-81 ISBN   1-901570-15-0