Thoroughbred Heritage
Thoroughbred Sires
of Horses that Jumped
Darley Arabian Line

Billy Barton

Kentucky-bred Billy Barton started his racing career on the flat in Lexington at age 2; sent to Cuba, he won a number of races, including the Cuba-American Handicap, the Cuban Derby, the Cuban Grand National Handicap, in all his flat racing wins amounted to $43,040 "before he turned cunning and refused to try," periodically refusing to leave the starting post. Retired from the flat track at age 5, he was purchased by Howard Bruce, who was master of the Elkridge Foxhounds in Maryland, with the intent of hunting him, after gelding. He proved to be a successful chaser--when shipped to England to contest the Grand National at Aintree he "astonished everyone by his terrific leaping, for he jumped in post and rail style, and cleared each fence by a good few inches, which differed considerably from the broad jumping, scratching-through-the-top method employed by a horse...negotiating brush fences with a ditch on one side or the other." In the U.S. he became the top timber horse of the late 1920s, breaking course records and winning an unprecedented number of top timber races: he won the Maryland Grand National twice, the Virginia Gold Cup, the Pennsylvania Hunt Cup, the New Jersey Hunt Cup, and the Maryland Hunt Cup, setting a course record in the latter race that stood for several years. His first attempt at Aintree resulted in second place in 1928, the disasterous year when only he and the lucky winner, Tipperary Tim, finished--Billy Barton had fallen, but was remounted. In his second try in 1929 he fell when he landed on a downed horse during the second circuit. He was retired from chasing after an injury prevented him from training on for the 1930 Grand National, and he was shipped back to the U.S. where he served as a hunter for his owner for a number of years, as he had prior to the start of his 'chasing career. Billy Barton was linebred to St. Simon: his sire, Huon, was a German-bred son of Epsom Derby winner Ard Patrick (grandson of St. Simon), imported into the U.S. His damsire, St. Savin (by St. Simon), got the 1918 American Grand National winner St. Charlcote.

©Patricia Erigero 2001 -2005. All Rights Reserved.