THOROUGHBRED CLASSICS: THE WOODWARD STAKES w/BONUS FOOTAGE
As if scripted from above, that same year, NASHUA, a horse William Woodward bred was being raced in his Belair Stud colors by his only son, Billy Woodward, Jr., and went on to be named Two-Year-Old Champion. By October of 1955, NASHUA kept rolling and wrapped up the three-year-old title; it seemed that the Woodward racing empire was still very much alive but tragedy was about to strike. In October of 1955, Billy Woodward, Jr., would be dead...shot to death by his wife, Anne, who investigators say mistook her husband as a burglar inside their Long Island home. A month later, Belair Stud would be no more; the horses, including NASHUA, were all auctioned off.
Today the Woodward Stable may no longer be a force in the sport but the Woodward Stakes not only survives...it flourishes. This interesting documentary about the Woodward Stakes...a race loaded with tradition...looks back at a few of the interesting stories of Woodwards past.
By New York standards the Woodward Stakes can't compare in tradition to races such as the Travers, the Alabama or the Champagne; it's only been around since 1954 not a century or more but what the Woodward lacks in years it makes up for with champions. Two of racing's most dynamic champions of the 20th Century dominated the Woodward in the 1960's and 1970's...they had charisma, talent, and legendary determination.
Even those who don't follow racing have probably heard of five-time Horse-of-the-Year, KELSO (1960-1964). See clips of KELSO in the following Woodwards: 1961 (featuring CARRYBACK), 1962 (featuring JAIPER), 1963 (featuring CARRYBACK and NEVER BEND) and probably the most thrilling Woodward of all....the 1964 (featuring GUN BEAU).
By the time KELSO was deep into retirement in 1976, another superstar gelding had emerged to whom he was often compared: FOREGO...the giant and three-time Horse-of-the-Year (1974-1976). See clips of FOREGO in the following Woodwards: 1974 (featuring ARBEE'S BOY), 1975 (featuring WAJIMA), 1976 (featuring HONEST PLEASURE and DANCE SPELL) and 1977 (featuring J.O. TOBIN). Like KELSO before him, FOREGO dominated the Woodward (winning four Woodwards in four attempts) and three of the Horse-of-the-Year trophies...and like KELSO, nagging injuries eventually lead to his retirement to a contented life on the farm; and in another similarity FOREGO also died at 26-years-old just like KELSO did.
Other legendary Woodward stories include the 1980 running with SPECTACULAR BID as the only entry and the 1967 Woodward - a race to remember.
On September 30, 1967, the career paths of superstars BUCKPASSER, DR. FAGER and DAMASCUS crossed at Aqueduct in a race for the ages...the race was so hot that the eventual winner of this race would take Horse-of-the-Year honors! That race will forever go down in racing history as it was and still is the only match up EVER between three eventual Horses-of-the-Year.
This feature runs the gamut from geldings, superstars, walkovers and, of course, the most shocking Woodward upset: SECRETARIAT's loss to PROVE OUT in 1973 (includes a short interview with rider, RON TURCOTTE, looking back as to what may have contributed to "BIG RED's" shocking 4-length loss, clips of SECRETARIAT and the ENTIRE Woodward Stakes from start to finish).
This great piece of racing history can be yours!
AS AN ADDED BONUS...two priceless segments are included after the main feature ends:
1) NASHUA, the 1955 Woodward Stakes winner, with vintage film footage of him when he ruled supreme in addition...NASHUA is shown at 30-years-old retired at Spendthrift Farm with his long-time groom, Clem Brooks
2) "FOUR FOR FOREGO" - an unheard of mini feature that showcases FOREGO's, impressive, "never-to-be-equaled", accomplishment of winning four STRAIGHT Woodward Stakes from 1974-1977 all in their ENTIRETY from gate to wire taken directly from the New York Racing Association's film archives. The ONLY other horse to even come close is KELSO who won three straight Woodwards from 1961-1963. No future horse will ever even come CLOSE to matching this insurmountable feat. Watch and ENJOY!
|Format(s) Available:||DVD And VHS|
|Category:||U.S. & Canadian Flat Racing|