Looking Back

This month in mid-atlantic thoroughbred history! For Looking Back archives click here.

Preakness winner Bee Bee Bee went down to defeat in Liberty Bell’s $50,000-added Minuteman Handicap when another Maryland-bred 3-year-old, North Sea, sped to a front-running 7-length score in the 11⁄16-mile race. Owned and bred by Alfred G. Vanderbilt, North Sea recorded the first stakes victory of his career. The $34,440 earned by the gray son of Nearctic more than doubled his lifetime earnings.

  • The Grand National Steeplechase Handicap, run at Belmont Park since 1899, was transferred to Fair Hill where it would be contested in the fall at 21⁄2 miles over hurdles. The transfer was made possible following the New York Racing Association’s decision to eliminate jumping races at all New York tracks except Saratoga.

  • Rising 2-year-old Lou Rosenbush, named for a Baltimore advertising executive, stamped himself as a bargain buy for Pimlico’s vice-president Nathan L. Cohen, who purchased him for $5,800 out of the Eastern Fall Yearling Sale. A winner in his second start, he was stakes-placed at both Monmouth and Delaware Park during the summer. 

    Bred by Dr. Harold Eskew with partner Dr. Walter H. Fordham Jr., the son of Longwood Farm stallion Turn to Reason was foaled at Longwood in Maryland but raised at Fordham’s Connemara Hill Farm in Factoryville, Pa. (near Scranton), before being sold. Eskew explained: “We entered into an agreement whereby [Fordham] boards the mares at his farm in Pennsylvania, I pay the stud fees and we split the sales prices on a 50-50 basis.”

    Named Maryland-bred champion 2-year-old male, Lou Rosenbush would win 14 times in 92 starts, had 13 stakes wins or placings, and earned $210,277.

  • Ambernash moved to Allaire duPont’s Woodstock Farm in Chesapeake City, Md. The advertisement noted: “A sure, virile horse of commanding conformation, Ambernash is by a champion and out of a champion. . . [he] meets the exacting standards of the St. Augustine breeding center, where he joins such crack sires as Nearctic, and the latter’s son, champion Northern Dancer.” The son of Nashua and Parlo had been standing at Dr. G.G. Meredith and Thomas J. Kelly’s Cedar Lane Farm in Kingsville, Md.

    Bred by William duPont Jr., Ambernash entered stud at Panorama Farm in 1966 and stood at Worthington, Cedar Lane, Woodstock and Larking Hill before being sold privately in 1978 to Charles and Cynthia McGinnes, who stood him at their Thornmar Farm in Chestertown until his death in 1988. Ambernash’s 18 stakes winners included three-time Maryland-bred champion Pearl Necklace, who was conceived at Woodstock in 1973.


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