Jockey Club: seven grand prizes that left a mark and the emblematic winners of the San Isidro race

Jockey Club: seven grand prizes that left a mark and the emblematic winners of the San Isidro race

The second step of the Argentine Triple Crown will have its 140th edition next Saturday in San Isidro, a racecourse that opens its doors to celebrate, above all, its 140 years of life with a special event, with recreational and musical activities for the whole family from 11 o’clock. For sporting purposes, the Jockey Club Grand Prix (G1) is the oldest classic on the calendar, in honor of the mother institution of national horse racing, and its history -which also passed through the National and Palermo- contains endless unforgettable days, with great champions who left their mark since that initial edition in 1883, a year after the foundation of the club and passing through three tracks.

Here are seven iconic winners from the San Isidro grass race:

Fort de France

He was the winner of the centennial Jockey Club, in 1982, where he had a particular partner, Marina Lezcano, the only jockey who achieved a victory in a national Triple Crown race. And on that occasion, in his second success in that race that he had obtained four years earlier with Telescopic, he had an extra ingredient for the rider: the horse set the world record for the 2000 meters on grass, which stood for more than two decades. . With a difficult temperament, the colt went long in the first elbow of Palermo in the Nacional, losing all his chance, and shortly after he went on to breed, a stage that he completed both in Argentina and in Brazil. “Although his character betrayed him, Fort de France was the horse with the fastest speed of all the ones I ran”, confessed Marina, after retiring from the profession.


He was the first winner of the Jockey Club in San Isidro, in 1955, and that same season he won the Triple Crown, inaugurating a small list of those who achieved the three gems combining successes on sand and grass. “When I ran him, he gave me the feeling that he calculated the chances of his rivals advancing, as if he measured them; he was one of the best horses I rode, ”Juan Pedro Artigas, his rider, recognized at the time. Tatán’s projection was international: on the tracks he also won twice in Uruguay and once in Brazil, and as a player he began to shine in these lands and completed his days in the United States, where today he remains in the genes of some champions .


He comfortably dominated the 1980 Jockey Club, which marked the return of the grand prize to San Isidro after the reopening and definitively. “El Indestructible” or “El Caballo de Acero”, as he was recognized for his ability to compete more frequently than other foals did, proved to be precocious and a singular strength to compete from short to longer distances. , with a plus of handsomeness when it was necessary. “Together with Team, they were the two best horses I trained in my life,” confessed Néstor Yalet, his caretaker, years before his death. Mountdrago transcended the tracks: he had hundreds of winning sons and his grandchildren also stood out, including Refined Tom, the last Triple Crown winner.

Refined Tom

He is the last winner of the Argentine Triple Crown, in 1996, driven by Jorge Valdivieso. Two and a half years after his victory by a length and a half in the Jockey Club Grand Prix, he returned to the country from his journey through the United States and showed a great level, reaching 10 conquests. “La Biznaga reserved it because there was no great interest in buying it, although it was for sale. He didn’t stand out for anything. He had the physique of a sprinter, he had a big haunch, a big neck, a wide forehead… He looked like a jerk, although he later showed that he had the qualities of an athlete”, described Roberto Bullrich, his trainer, who gave him chocolates at the stud but he could not go near to saddle him on race days because the horse would get angry. In the stud farm, with fertility problems, he had just three calves, all females, and the two that made it to the ring were winners. They ended up cloning him to produce polo ponies.

Village King

The 2017 Jockey Club was the first of four grands he won, by half a head. At the end of that year he was taken to the United States, where he won in New York with the colors of his Argentine owner, Carlos Felice. Before returning to the slopes in Argentina in 2020, he underwent two special surgeries -one in Kentucky and the other in Buenos Aires- and his reappearance was successful. He was removed from the tracks last December after winning the Carlos Pellegrini by nine lengths, the largest margin achieved in that race since the reopening of the San Isidro racetrack. “It seems to me that people are going to take dimension of his campaign over time. His farewell was a gift to the public, which due to the pandemic had not been able to see him from the stands in any of his previous successes since his return to the country, ”contextualized his owner. His first offspring will be born in 2023.

hi happy

Undefeated in the country in six races, one of his four Group 1 celebrations reached him at the Jockey Club in 2015, with a devastating run over. Horse of the year in Argentina that season, a tendon injury changed his destiny in 2016 and he was sent to the United States by his breeder and owner, the La Providencia stud farm, after discarding the initial plan of being shipped to to Dubai. On American soil he overcame his health problems and became a five-time G1 champion at Belmont Park, one of the New York racecourses. After completing his campaign with eight victories he returned to the country to be a stallion and his first sons will be able to start competing at the end of this year. “He won on the grass and in the sand, even in the United States running closer to the top than here. The most important thing that he had was that with the jacket he put his heart, ”said Altair Domingos, his usual rider in these lands and already retired from the profession.


He was awarded the Jockey Club in 2004, in the first of the seven seasons in which he was on the track and included a stint in the United Arab Emirates. He closed his campaign with 11 wins and eight of those were in grand prix, including the 2006 Carlos Pellegrini, the test that marked the retirement of Jorge Valdivieso escorting him on Puchet’s chair, and the 2007 Latin American in Maroñas (Uruguay), which was the first achieved by the Argentine delegation as a visitor in that itinerant race. In 2010 he was the protagonist of an unusual event: he returned to compete after going to the stud farm and serving nine mares. Pablo Falero guided him in his beginnings and then suffered him as a rival: “What was extraordinary was his validity. I have never seen a horse that maintained its running ability with age.”

Melissa Galbraith
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.