Oil on canvas, 20” x 24”
Signed, inscribed, dated 1947
$12,000. – 15,000.
Of all the successes trainer Hirsch Jacobs had (3,569 winners in 43 years of training), Stymie was perhaps his greatest. Claimed as a 2-year-old for a mere $1,500, the colt went on to win $918,485, more earnings than any other horse at that point in history.
Stymie, bred by King Ranch trainer Max Hirsch, was born in 1941 on the ranch in Texas. Hirsch Jacobs claimed him in his third race in June 1943. Jacobs must have seen something in the colt as the trainer did not get a win out of him until his 15th start. By the time Stymie turned 4, however, he was coming into his own. In 1945 Stymie won nine major races, including the Brooklyn Handicap, and was named champion older male of the year. He went on to win back-to-back Met Miles (both times coming from last), the International Gold Cup against King Ranch’s Triple Crown winner Assault, and many other races.
Richard Stone Reeves, who painted the champion racehorse here with his trainer and co-owner, remembers Stymie as, “the ‘people’s choice’ wherever he raced, and racing fans came in droves to watch him run. I was one of his most ardent admirers and particularly liked his proud and finely made head which he always held high whether standing or running.” — Richard Stone Reeves, Belmont Park; A Century of Champions
Linda Carroll and David Rosner recently co authored a book on Stymie titled Out of the Clouds; The Unlikely Horseman and the Unwanted Colt Who Conquered the Sport of Kings.