Looking Back

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

50 years ago
• Things were happening in Cecil County, Md.
“While heretofore the fastest-moving commodity in the county seat of Elkton was marriage licenses, the time is rapidly approaching when the Thoroughbred horse could become Cecil’s leading product,” wrote Joe Hickey.

“A visit to the Chesapeake City area is a revelation, for few realize the tremendous expansion that has been made in so short a time.”
Hickey noted the breeder who pioneered the territory was Allaire duPont, whose well-appointed Woodstock Farm dominated the countryside. “The mistress of Woodstock has the contagious form of enthusiasm and it has spread freely throughout her section of the country.”
Among those moving stables into the region were Pittsburgh mining magnate Leonard P. Sasso and E.P. Taylor, who put Canadian racing on the map and was in the process of building a training center in Maryland.
A top 2-year-old of 1961 for Mr. and Mrs. Harry Lunger, Cyane was  retired to stand as a sire in Maryland, and later Virginia.• Mr. and Mrs. Harry W. Lunger’s Cyane, among the best 2-year-olds of 1961, was going to stand his first season at his trainer Henry S. Clark’s Bowling Brook Farm in Middleburg, Md.
Cyane’s greatest triumph came in the 1961 Futurity, in which he defeated Jaipur and Sir Gaylord. A week later, the son of *Turn-to was sidelined by a hairline fracture of the right fore ankle. He returned to win a stakes at 3 (the Dwyer), but never quite equaled the promise which he had shown at 2.
The announcement was a bit premature, as the next month it ?was noted Cyane would stand at Merryland Farm in Hydes, Md. But by 1965 he was indeed at Bowling Brook, where he stood for three seasons before moving to Blue Ridge Farm in Upperville, Va.
Cyane had a long and successful career at stud, siring 48 stakes winners (11 percent of his foals). His most renowned son was $716,426-earner Smarten; his best daughter was two-time Delaware Handicap winner Obeah, Mrs. Lunger’s homebred mare who produced champion Go for Wand.
• Two of Maryland’s greatest race horses were inducted into the National Racing Museum’s Hall of Fame. Gallorette, bred at the late William L. Brann’s Glade Valley Farm, and Sagamore Farm’s Native Dancer, Maryland’s premier stallion, were among the four horses elected. The others were Calumet Farm’s Armed and Twilight Tear. Native Dancer received the greatest number of votes.
• Glade Valley Farm stallion Martins Rullah was rapidly developing into one of the nation’s most promising freshmen sires. Through early August, he had three winners from five starters (from 15 foals), with the other two finishing in the money. The 8-year-old stallion, who stood at the farm in Walkersville, Md., appeared on the cover of The Maryland Horse.


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