British horses held off a large-scale French onslaught - seven out of twenty entrants - to fill the first two places in the 1959 Derby filmed by VISNEWS at Epsom June 3.
British horses held off a large-scale French onslaught - seven out of twenty entrants - to fill the first two places in the 1959 Derby filmed by VISNEWS at Epsom June 3. Sir Humphrey de Trafford's Parthia, ridden by W.H. Carr, beat F.dalgo, ridden by J. Mercer - Carr's son-in-law - by a short head. Third place went to Baron Guy de Rothchild's French horse Shantung.
This year's Derby - the 180th. - was the richest to date. Sir Humphrey de Trafford received GBP36,078 in prize money, plus inestimable stud fees.
The Queen, Prince Philip, Queen Mother and Princess Margaret drove down the course from Tattenham Corner to the Royal Box. All keen horse lovers, they must have been a little disappointed that the Queen's horse Above Suspicion was not placed.
Contrasting with the morning suits and 'toppers' of the Royal Enclosure were the shirt sleeves and singlets of the general public. This was Derby Day at it's best. Hot June sunshine blazed down and the race finished with a classical struggle, Shantung coming up from last place to third in the last few yards.
Baron de Rothchild lodged a complaint that Shantung had been bumped. This was supported by his jockey who could not identify the culprit. It was the only cloud on a perfect day. The punters and small backers had a perfect day - both Parthia and Fidalgo had starting prices of 10-1.