Jump to: navigation, search

Detroit City (horse)

Detroit City
Sire Kingmambo
Dam Seattle Victory
Damsire Seattle Song
Gender Gelding
Foaled 2002
Country USA
Color Grey
Breeder Edward J Kelly
Owner Terry Warner
Trainer Philip Hobbs
Record 20: 12-1-0
Earnings £420,035
Detroit City is a thoroughbred racehorse out of Seattle Victory by Kingmambo. He was born around 2002 in USA, and was bred by Edward J Kelly.
Major wins
Triumph Hurdle (2006)
Anniversary 4-Y-O Novices' Hurdle (2006)
Cesarewitch (2006)
Greatwood Handicap Hurdle (2006)
Boylesports.com International Hurdle (2006)
Agfa Hurdle
Horse (Equus ferus caballus)

Detroit City (5 April 2002 – 24 November 2007) was a thoroughbred racehorse, most famous as a two mile hurdler. He won five Class 1 races including the 2006 Triumph Hurdle, he also had success on the flat in the Cesarewitch Handicap. The grey died in November 2007, aged five, following a fall at Ascot. He was trained by Jeremy Noseda until his hurdling career began when Philip Hobbs took over. Six of his seven wins over hurdles came with Richard Johnson as jockey.




Detroit City's racing career began in 2005 on all weather, he made his debut in January 2005 finishing ninth in a one mile two furlongs maiden.[1] A month later he won a one mile four furlongs maiden at Wolverhampton and followed this with two handicap wins over the same distance. In May he returned to turf but was disappointing finishing fifth and sixth in his first two runs. He won a one mile six furlongs handicap at Nottingham in June and was then entered in Bahrain Trophy where he finished second.

After his first season of hurdling he returned to the flat in October 2006 for the Cesarewitch, in a field of 31 he won by a length from Inchnadamph.[1]


Detroit City made his hurdling debut in December 2005 in a juvenile novices hurdle at Warwick. Following an eighth place in that race, he went on a succession of wins. He won two juveniles over two miles one furlong before travelling to the Cheltenham Festival for the Triumph Hurdle. At odds of 7/2 he went into the race as favourite and the bookmakers were proved correct, he outstayed stablemate Fair Along to win by five lengths.[2] He concluded the season with the Anniversary 4-Y-O Novices' Hurdle at Aintree, he won by eight lengths becoming the first horse since Pollardstown in 1979 to complete Triumph Hurdle/Aintree Hurdle double.[3]

After the Cesarewitch success, Detroit City switched back to hurdles again with a run at Cheltenham in the Greatwood Handicap Hurdle. With no pacemakers he set the pace himself and despite carrying top weight won by 14 lengths, the Racing Post described it as a "stunning performance".[4] Following the race he was made favourite for the Champion Hurdle. He returned to Cheltenham a month later for the Boylesports.com International Hurdle and won, beating Hardy Eustace by a length. The success in a field of only four failed to impress the Racing Post who said he still had "plenty to prove" to justify being favourite for the Champion Hurdle.[5]

Detroit's preparation run before the Champion Hurdle came in the Agfa Hurdle at Sandown, he won beating Straw Bear by one and 3/4 lengths. He arrived at Cheltenham on the back of eight consecutive wins but was attempting to defy the poor record of five year olds in the Champion Hurdle, 71 horses of that age had tried since the last five year old winner, See You Then in 1985. He began the race as 6/4 favourite but struggled from the beginning eventually finishing sixth of the ten runners, Racing Post noted it was a "huge disappointment".[6] He ended the season with a run in the Aintree Hurdle but finished tenth out of ten finishers.

Over the summer of 2007 Detroit City had a wind operation, a back problem and stomach ulcers were also treated.[7] He began the 2007/08 season with the Ascot Hurdle, moving up in trip to two miles and four furlongs. After jumping the second fence his back end collapsed, jockey Richard Johnson held his head down as he thought the horse may have broken a leg on landing but it would later be revealed a heart problem was the cause. Detroit City died on the track in the arms of Johnson.[8] Afterwards Johnson paid tribute to the horse calling him "probably the best hurdler I've ridden".[8]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Detroit City Race Record, RacingPost.com, Retrieved on 12 March 2009
  2. JCB Triumph Hurdle, 17 March 2006, RacingPost.com, Retrieved on 12 March 2009
  3. The Sportsman Anniversary 4-Y-O Novices' Hurdle, 17 March 2006, RacingPost.com, Retrieved on 12 March 2009
  4. Greatwood Handicap Hurdle, 12 November 2006, RacingPost.com, Retrieved on 12 March 2009
  5. Boylesports.com International Hurdle, 9 December 2006, RacingPost.com, Retrieved on 12 March 2009
  6. Smurfit Kappa Champion Hurdle, 13 March 2007, RacingPost.com, Retrieved on 12 March 2009
  7. Detroit City slicker after his summer break, Daily Telegraph, Retrieved on 12 March 2009
  8. 8.0 8.1 Loss of Detroit City overshadows Hardy Eustace's win, Times, Retrieved on 12 March 2009


Premier Equine Classifieds


Subscribe to our newsletter and keep abreast of the latest news, articles and information delivered directly to your inbox.

Did You Know?

Modern horse breeds developed in response to a need for "form to function", the necessity to develop certain physical characteristics in order to perform a certain type of work... More...

The Gypsy Cob was originally bred to be a wagon horse and pulled wagons or caravans known as Vardos; a type of covered wagon that people lived in... More...

Archaeological evidence indicates that the Arabian horse bloodline dates back 4,500 years. Throughout history, Arabian horses spread around the world by both war and trade.... More...

That the term "Sporthorse" is a term used to describe a type of horse rather than any particular breed... More...