Tom Ochiltree

Last updated
Tom Ochiltree
Tom Ochiltree.jpg
Tom Ochiltree
Sire Lexington
Grandsire Boston
DamKatona
DamsireVoucher
Sex Stallion
Foaled1872
CountryUnited States
Colour Bay
Breeder Woodburn Stud (A. J. Alexander)
Owner J. F. Chamberlain
W. H. Chamberlain
George L. Lorillard
Trainer R. Wyndham Walden
Anthony Taylor
Record33: 21-5-3
Earnings$41,455 [1]
Major wins
Annual Sweepstakes (1875)
Dixie Stakes (1875)
Baltimore Cup (1876, 1877)
Monmouth Cup (1876)
Saratoga Cup (1876)
Continental Cup (1876)
Westchester Cup (1877)
Grand National Handicap (1877)
All-Aged Stakes (1877)
Triple Crown wins:
Preakness Stakes (1875)
Awards
American Champion Three-Year-Old Male Horse (1875)
American Co-Champion Older Male Horse (1876)
Honours
United States Racing Hall of Fame inductee (2016)

Tom Ochiltree (18721897) was an American Thoroughbred racehorse who won the 1875 Preakness Stakes and several other major stakes. In 1877, he lost in one of the most famous match races of the nineteenth century – a race that had been so anticipated that both houses of Congress were adjourned so members could attend. In 2016, Tom Ochiltree was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame.

Contents

Background

Tom Ochiltree was bred by A.J. Alexander's Woodburn Stud and was one of the last offspring of the great foundation stallion, Lexington. He was an enormous colt, eventually reaching 17  hands (68 inches, 173 cm) high with a girth of 76 inches. According to racing historian Walter Vosburgh, "For size, bone, and coarseness, Tom Ochiltree surpassed all contemporaries." [1]

Purchased by J. F. Chamberlain at the 1873 Woodburn yearling sale for $500, he was later resold to tobacco heir George Lynde Lorillard. He was named after Colonel Thomas P. Ochiltree, who joined the Texas Rangers at age 14, fought for the Confederacy during the Civil War, became a newspaper editor and served as a United States Congressman. [1] The colt was originally trained by Hall of Fame conditioner Wyndham Walden, the founder of Bowling Brook Farm in Carroll County, Maryland).

Tom Ochiltree had two great rivals, Ten Broeck and Parole. Ten Broeck was foaled in the same year as Tom Ochiltree at the neighboring Nantura Stock Farm. Parole was born one year later, bred by Pierre Lorillard IV, the brother and racing rival of Tom Ochiltree's owner. [2] In 1877, these three would ignite the racing world in one of its biggest match races. [3]

Racing career

Because he was still growing, Tom Ochiltree did not race at age two. At three, he won in his career debut in a six-furlong race at Pimlico Racetrack. Two days later, he returned to win the third running of the Preakness Stakes, then run at a distance of 1+12 miles. He then finished third in the Belmont Stakes and Jersey Derby, and last in the Ocean Hotel Stakes. He was given some time off and was switched to trainer Anthony Taylor. Returning in October, he won the 2+12 mile Annual Stakes and the two-mile Dixie Stakes before finishing third in the Breckenridge Stakes to Aristides, winner of the first Kentucky Derby. Tom Ochiltree finished 1875 with a record of four wins from nine starts and earnings of $6,150. [1]

At age four, Tom Ochiltree returned to trainer Walden and became one of the top handicap horses on the East Coast. He won eight of ten starts, including the Baltimore Cup at 2+14 miles, the Jockey Club Handicap at two miles, the Centennial Stakes at 2+34 miles, the Monmouth Cup at 2+12 miles, Capital Stakes at three miles, Saratoga Cup at 2+14 miles, Maturity Stakes at three miles and the Centennial Cup at four miles. One of his few losses that year was to Parole in the 1+14-mile All Ages Sweepstakes, but he then beat Parole in the Saratoga Cup despite carrying 21 more pounds than his rival. [1]

At age 5, Tom Ochiltree won nine of 14 starts, also finishing second four times. His wins included the Westchester Cup at 2+14 miles, the Grand National Handicap at 2+14 miles, the All-Aged Stakes at 1+14 miles and a second Baltimore Cup at 2+14. He beat Parole in both the Grand National and All-Aged Stakes, carrying higher weights every time. [1]

At the same time, Ten Broeck was winning all his races. These two were then considered the best horses in the Union, with Parole a distant third. In those days, that could mean only one thing: a match race. [4]

The Pimlico Match

On October 24, 1877, at Baltimore, Maryland's Pimlico a "match" race was run between Parole, Ten Broeck and Tom Ochiltree. It was scheduled for the first day of the October meeting of the Maryland Jockey Club. By this time Ten Broeck ("King of the Western Turf") was winning everything in the midwest, while Tom Ochiltree and Parole were exchanging wins on the east coast that were so heated that a backer of Parole attempted to poison Tom Ochiltree, an attempt that sickened his stablemate Leander instead. [2] That July Parole had beaten Tom Ochiltree in the Saratoga Cup but Tom Ochiltree had come back and beaten Parole twice that October in the Grand National Stakes and All-Aged Handicap. On the day of the three-way match, perhaps 20,000 people showed up, filling every place in the stands or sitting in their carriages to watch. Both houses of Congress adjourned so that members could attend. At 3:15 in the afternoon, the horses went to post. Ten Broeck wore red ribbons in his mane, his stable colors. Parole wore cherry and black. Tom Ochiltree wore orange and blue. In the two-and-one-half mile race, Ten Broeck immediately led, followed by Tom Ochiltree, then Parole. And so it went in this order for quite some time. Twice Tom Ochiltree made a bid for the lead and won it on his second try. Parole was still trailing. And then, suddenly, Parole came on with a rush, passed both horses, and won by four lengths.

Aftermath

The result was a surprise. No one had ever beaten Ten Broeck and Tom Ochiltree had beaten Parole more times than he was beaten. Later, the owners of both horses explained away their losses. Ten Broeck had been seen for some time before the race to have had a cough. As for Tom Ochiltree, before the race, Wyndham Walden had telegraphed George Lorillard to warn him Tom Ochiltree had a cough. Lorillard had instructed him to run Tom Ochiltree "…so as not to spoil the race." But he also put $500 on Parole's nose.

A gelding, Parole raced on, becoming one of the few American horses to win a major English race. Both Ten Broeck and Tom Ochiltree were retired to stud.

Tom Ochiltree died on December 29, 1897, at the Middleburg, Maryland farm of his owner Wyndham Walden at the age of 25. [5] In 2016, he was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, joining both Ten Broeck and Parole. [1]

Sire line tree

Pedigree

Pedigree of Tom Ochiltree
Sire
Lexington

1850

Boston

1833

Timoleon Sir Archy
Saltram Mare
Sister to TuckahoeBalls Florizel
Alderman Mare
Alice Carneal

1836

Sarpedon Emilius
Icaria
Rowena Sumpter
Lady Grey
Dam
Katona

1857

Voucher

1845

Wagner Sir Charles
Maria West
BritanniaMuley
Nancy
Countess

1847

Margrave Muley
Election Mare
American Eclipse Mare American Eclipse
Rattler Mare


Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Funny Cide</span> American-bred Thoroughbred racehorse (2000–2023)

Funny Cide was an American Thoroughbred champion racehorse who won the 2003 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. He was the first New York-bred horse to win the Kentucky Derby. He was a popular horse and remained a fan favorite in retirement at the Kentucky Horse Park.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Native Dancer</span> American-bred Thoroughbred racehorse

Native Dancer, nicknamed the Gray Ghost, was one of the most celebrated and accomplished Thoroughbred racehorses in American history and was the first horse made famous through the medium of television. He was a champion in each of his three years of racing, and was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1963. In the Blood-Horse magazine List of the Top 100 U.S. Racehorses of the 20th Century, he was ranked seventh.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Aristides (horse)</span> American thoroughbred racehorse

Aristides (1872–1893) was an American Thoroughbred racehorse that won the first Kentucky Derby in 1875.

The Jockey Club Gold Cup, established in 1919, is a thoroughbred flat race open to horses of either gender three-years-old and up. It has traditionally been the main event of the fall meeting at Belmont Park, just as the Belmont Stakes is of the spring meeting and the Travers Stakes is of the summer meeting at Saratoga. The past winners of the Gold Cup are a veritable who's who of award-winning Hall of Fame horses, including Easy Goer, Man o' War, Cigar, Skip Away, Curlin, Slew o' Gold, John Henry, Affirmed, Forego, Shuvee, Damascus, Buckpasser, Kelso, Sword Dancer, Nashua, Citation, Whirlaway and War Admiral. Despite the current $1,250,000 purse and Grade 1 status, the stature of the race has suffered somewhat in recent years thanks to the emergence of the Breeders' Cup Classic held not long afterward, as well as a change in distance to 1+14 miles in 1990, reducing its distinctiveness.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pimlico Race Course</span> American thoroughbred horse racetrack

Pimlico Race Course is a thoroughbred horse racetrack in Baltimore, Maryland, most famous for hosting the Preakness Stakes. Its name is derived from the 1660s when English settlers named the area where the facility currently stands in honor of Olde Ben Pimlico's Tavern in London. The racetrack is nicknamed "Old Hilltop" after a small rise in the infield that became a favorite gathering place for thoroughbred trainers and race enthusiasts. It is currently owned by the Stronach Group.

Jerry D. Bailey is an NBC Sports thoroughbred racing analyst and a retired American Hall of Fame jockey.

The Whitney Stakes is an American Grade 1 stakes race for Thoroughbred racehorses four years of age and older run at a distance of 1+18 miles. The current purse is $1,000,000.

The Woodward Stakes is an American Grade Il stakes race and is one of the premier races for older thoroughbred horses in the United States. It is named for prominent racehorse owner William Woodward.

Robert Wyndham Walden was one of the most successful American trainers in thoroughbred horse racing during the last quarter of the 19th century. He was inducted in the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1970.

Longfellow (1867–1893) was an American Thoroughbred racehorse and sire.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Dinner Party Stakes</span> Horse race

The Dinner Party Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race held annually in mid-May at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. It is the eighth-oldest graded stakes race in the United States and the oldest stakes race in Maryland and all of the Mid-Atlantic states. The race is open to horses age three and up and is run one and one-eighth miles on the turf. Currently a Grade II stakes race with a purse of $250,000, at one time the Dixie was a very important race that drew the top horses from across North America.

Stymie was an American Thoroughbred racehorse.

Ten Broeck was an American U.S. Racing Hall of Fame Thoroughbred racehorse whose 1878 match race win in Louisville, against the great California mare Mollie McCarty was immortalized in the Kentucky folk song commonly called "Molly and Tenbrooks".

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Better Talk Now</span> American Thoroughbred racehorse

Better Talk Now was an American Thoroughbred racehorse best known for winning the Breeders' Cup Turf in 2004. His racing career stretched over nine seasons, during which he won 14 times, five of them Grade I stakes, with earnings of over $4.3 million.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Parole (horse)</span> American thoroughbred racehorse

Parole (1873–1903) was a Thoroughbred race horse bred by Pierre Lorillard, a scion of the tobacco family. Lorillard and his brother George were both horsemen and competed throughout their careers. Pierre founded the Rancocas Stable in New Jersey named after the New Jersey town where he owned a country manor.

Bowling Brook was a British-bred American-trained Thoroughbred racehorse.

George Lyndes Lorillard was an American tobacco manufacturer, yachtsman, and a prominent Thoroughbred racehorse owner.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Maryland Jockey Club</span> American sporting organization

The Maryland Jockey Club is a sporting organization dedicated to horse racing, founded in Annapolis in 1743. The Jockey Club was founded more than 30 years before the start of the Revolutionary War and is chartered as the oldest sporting organization in North America. After 267 years it remains the corporate name of the company that operates Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland which opened in 1870, Laurel Park Racecourse in Laurel, Maryland which opened in 1911 and Bowie Race Track in Bowie, Maryland which opened as race course in 1914 and ceased operations as a track in 1985. The track now serves as a training center for Thoroughbred racehorses.

Grenada was an American Thoroughbred racehorse. He won the 1880 Preakness Stakes, Belmont Stakes, and Travers Stakes. He is one of only seven horses to have won these three races.

Spinaway was an American Thoroughbred filly for whom the Grade 1 Spinaway Stakes at Saratoga Race Course is named.

References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 "Tom Ochiltree - National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame". www.racingmuseum.org. Retrieved 15 August 2016.
  2. 1 2 New York Times, 8/09/1876
  3. Nantura, 1795–1905 by Jonelle Fisher, St. Crispian Press, 2004
  4. The History of Thoroughbred Racing in America by William H.P. Robertson, Bonanza Books, New York
  5. "Gossip of the turf". Daily Racing Form . January 7, 1898. Retrieved 4 December 2010.
  6. Herod Sire Line
  7. Tom Ochiltree