Horse racing charts

Chart of the week: Beau Purple defeats Kelso and sets course record in the 1962 Man o’ War Stakes

Beau Purple defeats Kelso in the 1962 Man o’ War Stakes (12fT) at Belmont Park, 10/27/1962. Photo as published in Belmont Park, 1905-1968 (The New York Racing Association, 1968).


“The simple tactic of going to the front and staying there all the way resulted in victory once more for Jack Dreyfus’s Beau Purple yesterday.

The New York Times, 10/28/1962.

The 5-year-old son of Beau Gar, overlooked in such illustrious company as Kelso and Carry Back, thrilled a getaway-day crowd of 33,026 at Belmont Park by winning the mile-and-a-half Man o’ War Stakes by two lengths in record-breaking time.

A field of 12 competed in the $114,800 race, including a pair of campaigners from France. Bill Boland, riding Beau Purple, didn’t get a look at any of his opposition as he sped along in first place.

Finishing second was the highly favored Kelso. It was just these two at the finish, for the third horse, The Axe II of the Greentree Stable, was 6 ½ lengths farther back. Carry Back was fifth, back of Wise Ship.

Carrying 126 pounds in the weight-for-age test, Beau Purple covered the distance on the soft turf in 2 minutes 28 3/5 seconds. This knocked 3/5 of a second off the track mark made by Amber Morn as a 4-year-old, under 118 pounds, two years ago. In contributing the upset, Beau Purple rewarded his packers with a $43.30-for-$2 payoff in the straight wagering.

Beau Purple’s opposition, or rather the trainers of his opposition, refused to believe the “book” on the Dreyfus colt. He has a history of going to the font and staying there, contrary to all expectation.

He did the same thing in the Suburban Handicap, when he upset Kelso, and in the Brooklyn Handicap, when he finished well ahead of the fourth-place Carry Back. And last week, in the Gold Cup at Hawthorne, he did it again, on a sloppy track.

His fractions in the Man o’ War were 0:34 4/5, 0:49, 1:14 2/5 and 1:39 1/5. The one big “knock” against Beau Purple was that he had never been on the turf before, but he demonstrated that any footing suits him.

Ismael Valenzuela, aboard Kelso, contributed an even enough performance after getting away in fifth place. He gradually picked up those in front of him and when the field reached the stretch he had only Beau Purple to beat. The favorite players had only the smallest hope that Kelso could do it, though, for Beau Purple was moving with assurance and gave no indication of weakening approaching the wire.

As for Carry Back, he did not do any better than the betting board indicated he would. Sent off at 9 to 1, this 4-year-old colt owned by Mrs. Katherine Price moved in the pack all the way, improving only from seventh to fifth and just failing to get into the purse payoff. He was ridden by Johnny Rotz.

The winner’s share of the purse was $47,620. Kelso, as the runner-up, earned $22,960 for his owner, Mrs. Richard du Pont. A 5-year-old gelding, Kelso was the horse of the year for 1960 to 1961. The other purse payoffs were $11,480 to The Axe II, who was ridden by Bill Hartack, and $5,740 to Wise Ship, who was guided by Heliodoro Guistines.

Raymond Guest, the owner of the English Derby winner, Larkspur, made the presentation of the trophy to Dreyfus, while Boland and Hal Jerkens looked on. Jerkens is the 32-year-old trainer who has been so successful with Beau Purple. Dreyfus, 48, is the head of an investment firm.

The race was started from the gate, with all the contestants leaving from it. Val de Loir, one of the two French representatives, propped at the getaway, but managed to wind up in 10th place, ahead of Nasomo and Monade.

The last-named entrant, a 3-year-old filly, is also a French import. The order of finish after Carry Back was Honey Dear, Guadalcanal, T. V. Lark and Harmonizing.

Boland gave a plain enough description of Beau Purple’s performance: “I just let him run early and he went to the lead like he likes to do. He was going easy on the backstretch and into the far turn. I hit him coming into the stretch when Kelso came along and I thought Kelso would eat him up. But I kept hitting him and he kept running and Kelso never got there.”

Jerkens said: “Boland knew the horse and I left it up to him what to do out there.”

Dreyfus and Jerkens said that they would be glad to send Beau Purple into the Washington, D. C. International at Laurel on Nov. 12, “if he is invited.” There is no reason to believe that the horse will not be asked to the $125,00 race.

Beau Purple’s 1962 record shows eight victories in 19 starts, with earnings of $342,205. The 5-year-old horse is a Kentucky home-bred, whose mare was Water Queen.”
(Joseph C. Nichols / The New York Times, 10/28/1962)

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Chart of the week: Roamer wins the Saratoga Special, August 1913

Chart: New York Herald Tribune, 08/10/1913.


“Saratoga, Aug 9 – Andrew Miller’s Roamer won the Saratoga Special from a strong field of two-year-olds at the track here to-day like a colt of highest quality.

Breaking on his toes, Byrne took him right to the front, and this advantage counted, as the colt was good enough to force the pace, withstand a bold challenge from Gainer in the run around the turn and shake off his most dangerous rival inside the last sixteenth, to win by a length and a half in the good time of 1:13 for the six furlongs.

J. L. Holland’s Gainer was second, two lengths before E. R. Bradley’s Black Toney, with Punch Bowl fourth and the others badly strung out.

The start had much to do with the outcome. It was fair considering the size of the field, twelve horses going to the post, but in the scramble for position several suffered, including Early Rose, Punch Bowl, and Imperator, all of which were fancied to win. Captain Cassatt’s Spear Head [sic] was another unfortunate, being cut down in a way which may cause his retirement. Punch Bowl and Imperator were both slightly injured, the former being crowded against the fence.

After the race Andrew Miller was congratulated on all sides, and his delight at winning one of the most coveted stakes of the season was plain to see. He bought Roamer from Woodford Clay at Belmont Park two or three weeks ago for a price said to be $4,000 and would not part with him now for three time that amount. Mr. Clay was quite as pleased as Mr. Miller, but could not help expressing regret that he had parted with the horse before winning the real sprinting fixture of the year and the piece of plate, valued at $500, which is such a prized trophy.

Roamer won a selling race at Belmont Park in which he was entered to be sold for $1,000. At that time Albert Simmons bid him up to $2,200, but Mr. Clay retained him. Since then the colt has not shown enough to indicate that he could beat such a good field as he met to-day, but from now on he must be considered, when racing with the best, Old Rosebud excepted.” (New York Herald Tribune, 08/10/1913)

Chart of the week: Discovery falters under 143 lbs. in the Merchants’ and Citizens’ Handicap, August 1936

The New York Times, 08/09/1936

“Saratoga Springs, N. Y., Aug. 8. – How much thoroughbred muscle and bone can stand is the question to the fore here today as Discovery failed gallantly under 143 pounds in the Merchants’ and Citizens handicap with Middleburg stable’s filly, Esposa, the winner under 100 pounds.

Young Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt sent out his champion son of Display as a sporting gesture to the public even though he believed in New York earlier in the season that the 144 pounds assigned in a handicap was more than any horse should be asked to carry. The biggest crowd of the season, 18,000 saw the race, and cheered Discovery in defeat as much as Esposa in victory.

Discovery was last in a field of five, which ran over a track rough and slow from the rain of the day before yesterday. The combination of weight and track were too much for Discovery, and this is taking nothing from the filly, who did all that was asked, and did it gamely and well.

She finished smartly a length before Count Arthur which was up to take the place by a head from Mantagna. Then came Giant Killer, while Discovery trailed. The mile and three-sixteenths test had a gross value of $11,050, of which $8,500 went to the owner of the winner. Nick Wall had the mount and got the filly home first in 2:00 2-5, very slow time even though Esposa’s was a nice effort.

There have been few racing days this season as satisfying to lovers of the thoroughbred. Despite the popularity of Discovery, and his known prowess as the champion, there were many who had misgivings as to any horse’s ability to carry 143 pounds. Thus the Vanderbilt color-bearer went to the post at 7 to 10, while Esposa was as good as 7 to 1.

Whisk Broom II carried 139 to victory in the Suburban of 1930 and Discovery carried the same impost to be first in last year’s Merchants’ and Citizens. Man o’ War’s top impost was 138 during his racing career. Even Exterminator, mighty cup horse of another day, failed at Latonia over a distance of ground under 140.

In sprint races the weight above 140 can be handled, as Roseben and many other thoroughbreds have shown. But over a distance of ground, poundage beyond 140 takes its toll. The impost today was 140, plus a three-pound penalty for the victory of Discovery at this course on Wednesday. The total of 143 and the track were too much.

The break was even after a brief time at the post and Johnny Bejshak, Discovery’s rider, had to change his mind in the first few seconds. His mount broke smartly, but he did not have his accustomed drive in getting away. For this the lead in the saddle was doubtless to blame.

In any event, instead of having his mount outrun his field to the first turn, as Discovery with such an even break might be expected to do, Bejshak found himself on the outside of four horses as they made the swing for the first turn. Thus he had to change tactics and try to rate behind the pace-setting Mantagna. That fellow stepped away smartly and opened a couple of lengths’ lead.

Most of the riders in most of the races were staying off the rail, and Bejshak took advantage of this when he tried to improve his position in the backstretch. He let the big horse slip down toward the rail, where there was clear sailing and perhaps poorer footing. In any event Discovery began to pick up those in front; by the time the far turn was reached the field had bunched and Discovery was in danger of being in close quarters.

But this never happened. Because Wall gave Esposa the call on the outside she moved up to challenge Mantagna, and Mantagna and Esposa moved away from the others. These events transpired in the run from the far turn to the top of the stretch. As the leaders came to the top of the home lane, it was seen that they were well off the rail and that Discovery had plenty of room to run.

Bejshak had not given up. He cut the corner with Discovery, saved all possible ground, and it was clear that he thought he needed to save ground. Discovery came on only momentarily and then he stopped. He could do no more.

Esposa and Mantagna on the head end had about finished their duel, with the filly the decisive winner. Mantagna tired and could not even withstand Count Arthur, which made his usual late charge and was good enough to be second.” (Bryan Field / The New York Times, 08/09/1936)

Chart(s) of the week: Princequillo’s 2-year-old struggles

While Princequillo (IRE) would become a solid stakes performer in his later years as the distances increased, nine out of ten of his starts as a 2-year-old were in the claiming ranks.

Racing at distances from 5 ½ furlongs to 1 mile, Princequillo’s lone non-claiming appearance did not come until his final start of the year – a last place finish in the Sporting Plate Handicap (6f) at the United Hunts Racing Association’s Belmont Park meeting in November 1942. He would conclude his juvenile season with a record of (10) 3-2-3 and $3,575 in earnings.

*Note: This Sporting Plate Handicap was a 2-year-old race held over the years as part of the United Hunts at Belmont meeting, and is an altogether different race from the Sporting Plate Handicap run from the late 1970s to late 1990s at Aqueduct.


The New York Times, 07/24/1942


Princequillo chart (NYT 1942.07.30)

The New York Times, 07/30/1942


Princequillo chart (NYT 1942.08.07)

The New York Times, 08/07/1942


The New York Times, 08/21/1942


The New York Times, 08/28/1942


The New York Times, 09/15/1942


The New York Times, 09/29/1942


The New York Times, 10/08/1942


The New York Times, 11/11/1942


The New York Times, 11/15/1942

Chart of the week: Black Toney’s maiden race, May 1913

Ok, the title is a bit of a misnomer, as the last “Chart of the Week” post prior to this was in August 2016, but hope springs eternal.


“E. R. Bradley’s Black Toney, the first of Peter Pan’s get to start this season in these parts, spreadeagled his opposition in the second race, consisting of 11 other youngsters, the Californian Sosius taking second place and the favorite, Francis, outside of the money.” (Cincinnati Enquirer, 05/15/1913)

Cincinnati Enquirer, 05/15/1913

Of additional note, fourth place horse Christophine (Plaudit) would go on to set a new world record for 1 mile (1:36 ⅘) at Juarez on March 11, 1914, lowering the previous record of 1:37 set by Bonne Chance (Orsini) also at Juarez in January 1914. Christophine’s record would stand for six months until lowered by Stromboli’s (Fair Play) 1:36 ⅗ at Belmont Park in September 1914.

Chart of the Week: Leochares carries 145 lbs. in the Momus Highweight Handicap

PHOTO - Leochares (LCJ 1917.02.17)

Louisville Courier-Journal, 02/17/1917

On January 9, 1917, the seven-year-old veteran campaigner Leochares (Broomstick) carried 130 lbs. while scoring a runaway ten-length win in a purse at New Orleans’ Crescent City Race Course. His final time of 1:12 equaled the track record set by the Bonnie Joe mare Useeit on January 29, 1915.

Fresh off of this outstanding effort, Leochares would take to the track again at Crescent City on February 16 in the six furlong Momus Highweight Handicap, where despite shouldering a crushing burden of 145 lbs., he would once again equal the track record in recording a half-length win over J. J. Murdock (Contestor).

CHART - Leochares Momus Highweight H. (DRF 1917.02.17)

Daily Racing Form, 02/17/1917


Leochares would ultimately set or equal at least the following records over the course of his career:

  • ETR at Aqueduct (9/17/1917): 6.5f in 1:18 (carrying 124 lbs.).
  • ETR at New Orleans [Crescent City] (2/16/1917): 6f in 1:12 in the Momus Highweight H. (carrying 145 lbs.).
  • ETR at New Orleans [Crescent City] (01/09/1917): 6f in 1:12 (carrying 130 lbs.).
  • NTR at Bowie (11/24/1916): 1 mi. in 1:41 in the Terminal Purse (carrying 114 lbs.), defeating Bondage.
  • NTR at Pimlico (11/04/1916): 6f in 1:11 ⅘ in the Pimlico Fall Serial Handicap No. 1 (carrying 133 lbs.), defeating Prince of Como, Rhine Maiden, Runes.
  • NTR at Fort Erie (08/05/1914): 6f in 1:11 ⅖ (carrying 102 lbs.), defeating Little Nephew, Pan Zareta.
  • EAR at Louisville [Douglas Park] (10/03/1913): 6f in 1:10 ⅘ (carrying 109 lbs.), defeating Helios, Iron Mask, Helen Barbee, Pan Zareta.
  • NTR at Louisville [Douglas Park] (09/26/1913): 1 mi. in 1:37 ¾ (carrying 101 lbs.), defeating Kleburne, Prince Hermis.
PHOTO Leochares (TB Record, Vol. 18 No. 18, 1914.10.31)

Thoroughbred Record (Vol. 18, No. 18), 10/31/1914