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Stagehand (horse)

Sire Sickle
Dam Stagecraft
Grandsire Phalaris
Damsire Fair Play
Gender Stallion
Foaled 1935
Country United States
Color Bay
Breeder Joseph E. Widener
Owner Col. Maxwell Howard
Trainer Earl Sande
Record 25: 9-3-6
Earnings $200,110
Stagehand is a thoroughbred racehorse out of Stagecraft by Sickle. He was born around 1935 in the United States, and was bred by Joseph E. Widener.
Major wins
Empire City Handicap (1938)
Santa Anita Handicap (1938)
Governors Handicap (1938)
Narragansett Special (1938)
Santa Anita Derby (1938)
American Champion Three-Year-Old Male Horse (1938)
Horse (Equus ferus caballus)

Stagehand (foaled 1935 in Kentucky) was an American Thoroughbred racehorse who is the only horse to ever win the Santa Anita Handicap and the Santa Anita Derby in the same year.

Bred by the prominent horseman Joseph E. Widener, Stagehand was sired by Sickle, who was a son of the influential English sire Phalaris. His dam was Stagecraft, a daughter of U.S. Racing Hall of Fame inductee and Leading broodmare sire in North America Fair Play.

Maxwell Howard of Dayton, Ohio purchased Stagehand for $8000 and raced him at tracks on the U.S. East Coast as well as in California. Trained by former jockey and future Hall of Fame inductee Earl Sande, Stagehand was winless at age 2, but matured into a champion at 3. He began his 3-year-old campaign with a second-place finish in a 7-furlong race for maidens and then won three one-mile races in a row.

Next, he tackled stakes horses in the Santa Anita Derby for 3-year-olds on Feb. 22, 1938. Stagehand won by a half-length over Dauber, with Sun Egret third.

Just 10 days later, in the March 5, 1938 Santa Anita Handicap, Stagehand was up against older horses, and was assigned just 100 pounds to carry. Champion jockey Nick Wall brought the colt from three lengths back to overtake and beat Seabiscuit (who was burdened with 130 pounds) by a nose while setting a new track record in winning California's most prestigious race. As of 2007, Stagehand remains the only three-year-old to ever win the Santa Anita Handicap. His upset win in the "Big Cap" made him the only horse ever to win the Santa Anita Handicap and the Santa Anita Derby in the same year.

From his 15 starts in 1938, Stagehand won eight, finished second twice, and was third three times. His performances earned him 1938 U.S. Champion Three Year Old Colt honors.

Stagehand raced at age 4 in 1939, with his best result coming in the Widener Handicap when he finished third to winner Bull Lea. Retired to stud duty, he had modest success as the sire of several stakes race winners. His last foal was born in 1953.



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