Looking Back

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

Cigar recorded his final victory when defending his title in the Woodward Stakes-G1 at Belmont Park, his first race since finishing second in the Pacific Classic-G1 at Del Mar. It was the Maryland-bred’s 15th stakes win (11 Grade 1s) and set him up for a bid for a second Breeders’ Cup Classic-G1, his final start.

However the long campaigns seemed to finally catch up with “America’s Horse” as he lost three of his last four starts after winning 16 straight over nearly two years. In his final two races he missed by a neck to Skip Away while giving weight in the Jockey Club Gold Cup-G1, and was third in a tight photo in the Breeders’ Cup Classic-G1.

Cigar topped the Thoroughbred Racing Communications poll of leading racehorses every week for two years. Allen Paulson’s 6-year-old retired as the richest Thoroughbred in history with earnings of $9,999,815 and was a lock to retain his title as Horse of the Year.

  • The public was invited to help celebrate the 250th anniversary of the arrival of the English stallion Spark and the filly Queen Mab at Belair Mansion and Belair Stables in Maryland. The two horses – gifts from Lord Baltimore to his esteemed friend, Maryland Gov. Samuel Ogle – were the first documented English Thoroughbreds in the new world when they arrived at Belair in April 1747.

  • T. V. Commercial, a holdover from Windfields Farm’s glory days, died of natural causes at Northview Stallion Station at age 31. The pensioner had been a fixture in Cecil County, Md., since 1972, the year he arrived at Woodstock Farm.

    The sire of 28 stakes winners including noted sire It’s Freezing, T. V. Commercial stood his final season in 1988. He spent his entire Maryland stud career in Woodstock Farm’s stallion barn, and was moved to the main stallion barn at Windfields to accompany Northern Dancer when that farm closed its doors in 1989. Northern Dancer died in the fall of 1990.

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