April 1905: The horses of William Hendrie’s Valley Farm

“There is much to see and be interested in in a visit to the six hundred or more acres of hill and dale and level land that make up the Valley Farm of Mr. Wm. Hendrie, a few miles north and west of Hamilton. Thoroughbred horses are the first and chief of its live stock interests, but one may also find there Shorthorn cattle, Shetland ponies, Yorkshire hogs, and a few varieties of choice fowls, not overlooking the war horses that wear feathers and can crow.

Twenty-four are in the brood mare list at the farm this season, and many strains of blood are represented. Half of the mares have done service on the race course for the brown and yellow jacket, and a dozen of them are of their owner’s breeding. All the others are American-bred, and so there is not an English-bred mare on the place, though thirteen of the twenty-four are by English sires, including, of course, the Derwentwaters. Two of them are Plate winners – Butterscotch [sic] and Lyddite – and the blood of the dams of both of these is carried also in their sisters – Maple Sugar and Firewater and Burnwater.

The foals of this season are by Harvey and Gold Car, but others are due by the Futurity winner, Martimas, and by Derwentwater. There are nine yearlings, of which four are the first progeny of Martimas. Gold Car’s stock will also be seen on the turf next year.

Four stallions are in use at the Valley Farm, though the blood of Derwentwater is now so numerously represented among the mares that this horse will not have the same opportunity as the others. The stallions are: –

Imp. Derwentwater, by Doncaster – Thorwater, by Thormanby
Gold Car, by imp. Goldfinch – Carina, by Kingfisher
Harvey, by Himyar – Safety, by Buchanan
Martimas, by imp. Candlemas – Biggonet, by Bramble

These horses represent very successful lines in the stud, and though Martimas and Gold Car have not yet sent anything to the races, there is no reason to suppose they will be less successful than similarly bred horses elsewhere. Derwentwater has sired a number of winners, including the two that broke the ice for Mr. Hendrie in the event which he, like all other Canadian turfmen, was anxious to win, the King’s Guineas. Harvey did not go far when he was racing, but it is doubtful if a faster hose was ever seen at Valley Farm, and he really broke down before there was a fair chance to see how far he could stay. There is nothing in his breeding on either side to cause it to be taken for granted that he was not a horse for a distance. Himyar’s granddaughter, Cap and Bells, won the Oaks at a mile and a half, and Harvey is a very stoutly bred one on the other side. At any rate, though he was not favored in the choice of mares, all his progeny can run, and all but one that were trained are winners. Gold Car’s sire is a son of the wonderful Ormonde.

The list of mares and their progeny is:

Hendrie mares (Toronto Globe 1905.04.13)

Toronto Globe, 04/13/1905

The horses in training number twenty-three, including one bred and owned by Mr. Geo. M. Hendrie of Sandwich. Trainer Mosby and Foreman John Dixon have them looking in excellent order, with a clean bill of health after the long winter, and good prospects for the season now close at hand. The horses are:  –

Light Brigade, ch. h., 5, by Maximo – Balaclava.
Scarfell, br. c., 4, by Shapfell – Blanch of Devon.
Loch Goil, ch. c., 4, Juvenal – Soliloquy.
Nimble Dick, blk. c., 4, by Harvey – Favor Me.
*Heather Jock, b.c., 4, by Derwentwater – Pee Weep.
Land’s End, br. c., 3, by Esher or Handsome – Ultimatum.
Blue Grouse, br. f., 3, by Tithonus – The Dove.
*Jeannie Dick, b.f., 3, by Derwentwater – Locust Blossom.
Sampan, b.f., 3, by Harvey – Omeo.
*Lorne Reel, ch. f., 3, by Derwentwater – Dance.
Royal Charlie, ch. c., 2, by imp. Griffon – Flaxen Hair.
Shine On, ch. g., 2, by Mazagan – Glance.
Goggles, ch.c., 2, by Mazagan – Sparkle.
Goatfell, b.c., 2, by Shapfell – Singing Bird.
King’s Guinea, br. c., 2, by King of Coins – Prismistic.
Preferential, br. c., 2, by Harvey – Favor Me.
Blue Jeans, ch.c., by Harvey – Cottonade.
Bawbee, ch. f., 2, by Griffon – Favor Ban.
Logan Water, ch. f., 2, by Derwentwater – Rosina Vokes.
Sword Dance, ch. f., 2, by Derwentwater – Dance.
Waterman, ch. g., 2, by Derwentwater – Splash.
Chippewa, b. c., 2, by Griffon- Little Agnes.
Banzal, b. g. 2, by Harvey – Cuba Free. (Property of Geo M. Hendrie).
*King’s Platers.

Light Brigade, the champion of the stable, will be taken along slowly this spring. He is light in flesh, and apparently is not wanted early, as he has not been nominated in the stakes of the Hamilton Jockey Club, which have already closed, though it may be that as both the events for which he is eligible there are over a  mile, that may be considered beyond his distance. A horse of not a few training disabilities, he was prevented from racing till his four-year-old form. Mr. Hendrie bought him as a yearling, but could not start him at two years. At three be was again in training, and again his owner was disappointed in the expectation of seeing the son of the dead Maximo with the colors up. His private form, though, was such that Mr. Hendrie felt he could afford patience, with the assurance that Light Brigade would show himself well worth waiting for. At first appearance he won, and in sensational fashion. If Light Brigade were the property of a betting stable he would have returned a fortune for all that long wait. Mr. Hendrie, though, does not bet, and he found ample reward in the knowledge that his judgment was correct, and he had shown the public a high-class horse in the peacocky big chestnut.

The four-year-olds Scarfell and Loch Goil will be the stable’s dependence in the cup races of the local season, at least, and both have wintered well. Scarfell has not gained much in the matter of height, but has filled out and muscled up where it will do him most good. This is a very fast horse, as one must need to be to run half a mile in 46 seconds, and Scarfell did that at Saratoga last year when he won a seven furlongs race in 1.25 ½. He won in a gallop, too, with the nearest horse to him two lengths away. So handily was he going at the end of this tremendous burst that poor Otto Wonderly, who rode him, said to trainer Mosby when he dismounted: ‘If you had waved your hand to me I could have made a world’s record.’ Though he carried weight well enough as a two-year-old, he did not seem to care for it last year.

Nimble Dick, second in last year’s Plate, and a winner several times afterwards, is restricted to light work just now, on account of injury received when out on the road. The horses are doing their daily turn on the five furlongs track at the farm, which is in the best of order, and they will move to Woodbine as soon as the weather seems to be settled.

The Platers are three – Heather Jock, 4 years, and the three-year-old fillies Lorne Reel and Jeannie Dick. The colt is a brother to the disappointing Scotland Yet, which is nothing to his credit, and a half brother to the very good mare Laverock. He ran late last year and finished fifth in the Plate. His performance was one that indicated more merit than would be imagined from the positions of the horses at the finish, as he ran like one that would be improved by the race. A big and gross one, he was the kind that need actual racing to get them to their best order. He ran again in the Breeders’ Stakes, in which he was third to War Whoop and Nimble Dick. His next and last start was in the Stanley Stakes, in which he was fourth, pulling up lame.

The fillies are both unknown qualities, not alone to the public, as having never started, but even to their trainer, who has had little opportunity to assure himself whether or not they are likely to go fast or far. Mishaps which caused their temporary retirement last year, when they would have been asked some question, are responsible for that situation. Lorne Reel got into a barbed wire fence, and Jeannie Dick was kicked, so that both had to be put away when they would have been receiving the foundation for this spring’s training. Jeannie Dick was sent six furlongs in 1.18 last fall at Woodbine, but that was all she was asked to do. She runs in type to the other side of the house, and shows nothing of the Derwentwater in her make-up. In looks she is a Galopin, while Lorne Reel is a big, slashing Derwentwater, and she would have got size from her dam, Dance, if not from the Doncaster horse. Both gallop nicely, and it may be that one may turn out to be another Lyddite to upset calculations and bring another Plate to the Valley Farm.

The other three-year-olds are Blue Grouse and the Harvey filly Sampan, both good winners last year, and the maiden Land’s End, a promising big colt undoubtedly by Esher, though his dam was also bred to Handsome.

Of the dozen two-year-olds five are home-bred, two by Harvey and the others by Derwentwater. Preferential is the pick of the Province-breds. A full brother to Nimble Dick, he is a much better-shaped horse, and to all appearances a smarter one than Nimble Dick was at his age. He may be kept for next year’s Plate, but Mr. Hendrie will probably decide to send him along this season, and let him win if he can. Logan Water is a full sister to Circus Girl, and Blue Jeans is a useful-looking customer from the smart mare Cottonade.

Imported Griffon, a son of Galopin and a Hampton mare, is represented by three of the purchased youngsters, imp. Mazagan, son of Martagon, by two, and imp. King of Coins, and imp. Shapfell, Scarfell’s sire, by one each. It is early yet to estimate the probabilities of the season, but the Valley Farm may safely be said to have a useful lot with which to face what fortune has in store for the gallopers this season.” (Toronto Globe, 04/13/1905)

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