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TIMELINE


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BLAST FROM THE PAST


SUN CHIEF: Top Pacer

SUN CHIEF

Sun Chief, one of the Dominion's top pacers in his heyday, is to be retired from racing. He had more than his share of bad luck after reaching five years of age.

During the last two seasons, Sun Chief failed to return to his earlier good form, his failure to do so being due, no doubt, to his being involved in more than one accident in races.

Sun Chief commenced racing as a 2-year-old in the 1958-9 season, and met defeat only once in six starts - in the NZ Sapling Stakes. That season Sun Chief won the NZ Golden Slipper Stakes, the Canterbury Park Juvenile Stakes, the Timaru Nursery Stakes, the NZ Welcome Stakes and the Oamaru Juvenile Stakes.

At three years Sun Chief won four races, including the NZ Champion Stakes and the Great Northern Derby in 3.14 1/5. Sun Chief was also narrowly beaten in the NZ Derby by Stormont after meeting with interference.

Sun Chief commenced his 4-year-old season on a winning note in the Louisson Handicap, a success which brought him right into favour for the NZ Cup that year. His prospects of success in the big event were further strengthened when he beat a strong field in the Hannon Memorial Handicap by a length and a half. Sun Chief made a game effort to win the Cup at four years, but was caught and beaten in the last furlong by False Step - an out-and-out champion.

Sun Chief won the final of the Dunedin Festival Cup as a 5-year-old, his sole success at that age. Since then, Sun Chief has raced removes below his best form, but last season he managed a fourth in the NZ Cup won by Lordship.

Sun Chief is a handsome bay horse by My Chief from the Dillon Hall mare, Jenny Dillon, a direct descendant of the imported mare Bonnie Jenny. In all, Sun Chief won £12,360 in stakes in the Dominion, the result of 12 wins and 14 placings in 62 starts. He also won a substantial amount in Australia.

Credit: NZ Trotting Calendar 1Apr64

 
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