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Hyperion (horse)

Hyperion (6)
Sire Gainsborough
Dam Selene
Grandsire Bayardo
Damsire Chaucer
Gender Stallion
Foaled 1930
Country Great Britain
Color Chestnut
Breeder Edward Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby
Owner Edward Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby
Trainer George Lambton
Record 13: 9-1-2
Earnings £29,509
Hyperion (6) is a thoroughbred racehorse out of Selene by Gainsborough. He was born around 1930 in Great Britain, and was bred by Edward Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby.
Major wins
New Stakes (1932)
Dewhurst Stakes (1932)
Prince of Wales's Stakes (1933)
Chester Vase (1933)
Epsom Derby (1933)
St. Leger Stakes (1933)
Timeform rating: 142
Leading sire in GB & Ireland
(1940, 1941, 1942, 1945, 1946, 1954)
Leading broodmare sire in Britain & Ireland
(1948, 1957, 1967, 1968)
Horse (Equus ferus caballus)
Last updated on January 7, 2007

Hyperion (18 April 1930 - 9 December 1960) was a Thoroughbred racehorse and an outstanding sire. Owned by Edward Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby, Hyperion won £29,509 during his career. His victories included the Epsom Derby and St. Leger Stakes.

Hyperion was by the Triple Crown winner and good sire Gainsborough, and his dam, Selene, was by Chaucer. Selene was also the dam of the good sires Sickle (in the US), Pharamond (US), and Hunter's Moon (Argentina).[1]

Hyperion was one of the smallest horses to ever win classic races, but he had a good action and beautiful temperament.[2] He stood just 15 hands 1½ inches, with a girth of 68 inches, and measured 7¾ inches below the knee.[1]

He was retired to stud when he was five years old and became a phenomenal success.

An important stallion, he sired the winners of 752 races[2] and was the leading sire in Great Britain & Ireland six times, counting amongst his progeny Aureole, Sun Chariot (1,000 Guineas, Oaks and St. Leger Stakes) and Pensive, winner of the 1944 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. Hyperion's daughters foaled the winners of 1,196 races and £1,131,346.[2] He was also the damsire of Nearctic, who in turn sired Northern Dancer, the 20th Century's greatest sire.

In Australia and New Zealand, Hyperion's descendants have exerted a profound influence on the racing and breeding industry. This influence was introduced via Hyperion's foreign based sons and also by his imported sons, Empyrean, Helios, High Peak, Red Mars, and Ruthless, as well as paternal grandsons.[3]

Lord Derby commissioned equine artist Martin Stainforth to paint a portrait of Hyperion.

A lifesize statue modelled by John Skeaping in bronze of Hyperion, stands at the front of the Jockey Club headquarters on Newmarket High Street. From 2009, his skeleton can also be seen in the National Horseracing Museum (also in Newmarket), lent by the Animal Health Trust to replace the skeleton of Eclipse (currently undergoing DNA analysis).


  1. 1.0 1.1 Leicester, Sir Charles, “Bloodstock Breeding”, J.A. Allen & Co, London, 1969
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Ahnert, Rainer L. (Ed. in Chief), “Thoroughbred Breeding of the World”, Pozdun Publishing, Germany, 1970
  3. de Bourg, Ross, “The Australian and New Zealand Thoroughbred”, Nelson, West Melbourne, 1980, ISBN 0 17 005860 3

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