Courtesy of Richard
[ex-Foig-a-Ballagh] br c 1841 (Sir Hercules - Guiccioli, by Bob
Booty). Sire Line Pot8os.
Bred in Ireland by George Knox of
Brownstown House, Kildare, from a mare bred by Mr Blake he was
a full brother to the Champion Sire
Birdcatcher (ch c 1833). He
was purchased by E J Irwin in July of 1842. He ran under the
name of Foig-a-Ballagh which is said to mean "Take yourself off! bag and
baggage!". Standing a hair
under 16 hands he was said to be a well-made horse, full of
courage, with great
power and a fine temper.
In his three year old season
he paid a forfeit for all his engagements prior to the St
Leger, including the Derby, due to a bad curb. Winning the
St Leger handily "by a length" he went on to annex the Grand Duke Michael Stakes,
the Cesarewitch, and finish second for the Cambridgeshire the
same year. In the stud he got a number of good winners,
including Leamington (br c 1853) who twice won the Chester Cup
and was later a leading sire in America, The Hadji and Master
Bagot. Following the 1855 season was sent to France. There he
got the superb filly Fille de l'Air (ch f 1861) who won the Oaks
Stakes and in France the Prix de Diane and Grand St Leger de
In 1843 he
finished 3rd for the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster, won
by Mr Salvin's The Cure (br c 1841 Physician), with Mr Osbaldeston's One Thousand Guineas winner Sorella (ch f
1841 The Saddler)
placing 2nd, beating Colonel Anson's Oaks winner The
Princess (ch f 1841 Slane), Lord Westminster's Fanny
Eden (br f 1841 Touchstone),
Brunel (br c 1841 Velocipede)
and 4 others.
In 1844 he won
the Great St Leger at Doncaster (£2475), beating The
Cure by a length, The Princess, Mr Meiklam's Ebor
Handicap winner Godfrey (br c 1841 Inheritor), Mr John
Scott's Bay Momus (b c 1841
Bay Middleton), Mr
Hampson's Liverpool Cup winner Lightning (br c 1841
Sheet Anchor), the Duke of Richmond's Chester Cup winner
Red Deer (b c 1841 Venison) and 2 others. At the same meeting won a
1000 sovs match from Mr Collett's Cesarewitch and
Chester Cup winner Corranna (b c 1839 Hymen) by 6
lengths "in a trot". Won the 1000 sovs Grand Duke Michael Stakes at
Newmarket First October in a canter, beating Red Deer,
Lord Exeter's Merope (b f 1841 Voltaire), Colonel Peel's
Zenobia (b f 1841 Slane) and Lord G Bentinck's
All-Round-My-Hat (b f 1841 Bay Middleton). Won the £1175 Cesarewitch at
Newmarket Second October, beating Mr Dawson's
Lightning, Sir J Hawley's Venus (br f 1840
Lord G Bentinck's Discord (b c 1837 Mulatto), John O'Gaunt (ch c 1838 Taurus), Semiseria (br f 1840
Voltaire), Ionian (b c 1841 Ion), The Emperor (ch c 1841
Defence) and 18 others. Finished 2nd for the £1105
Cambridgeshire at Newmarket Houghton, won by Lord
Stradbroke's Evenus (b c 1840 Alpheus), beating Mr
Payne's Walpole (b c 1841 Clearwell), Ma-Mie (b f 1839
Jerry), Newcourt (b c
1840 Sir Hercules),
Croton Oil (b c 1841 Physician), The Cure and 12 others.
At the same meeting collected a 150 sovs compromise from
a 500 sovs match against Mr Salvin's
Hawthorn (br f 1838 Muley Moloch) and paid a half forfeit to Lord G
Bentinck's Naworth for a 200 sovs match.
In 1845 finished
2nd for the 500 sovs Emperor of Russia's Plate at Ascot
Heath, won by
Lord Albemarle's The Emperor (ch c 1841 Defence),
beating Alice Hawthorn and Lord G Bentinck's Cowl (b c
1842 Bay Middleton),
the latter going lame at the last turn.
||Babette (ch f 1849), dam of
Cambridgeshire winner Bathilde (ch f 1858
Stockwell), the latter
dam of the stallions Lincolnshire winner Tomahawk (ch c 1871
Thormanby) and Stewards'
Cup winner Lowland Chief (ch c 1878 Lowlander).
||Fashion (br f 1853), dam of
Nagroda Iwna winner Hirondelle (bl f 1864 Seahorse).
||Garnish (br f 1855), dam of
Chester Cup winner Our Mary Ann (br f 1865
||Rachel (b f 1856), dam of
Manchester Cup winner Dunsany (ch c 1862 Claret).
||Conquete (b f 1860), won
Furstenberg-Rennen, dam of Nagroda Derby winner Concorde (b f
1878 Vermouth) and Nagroda Liry winner Korona (b f 1885 Kaiser).
||Fille de l'Air (ch f 1861),
bred by Count Lagrange at Dangu in Normandy, was thought "one of
the finest movers ever seen on the turf". She won the Woodcote,
Criterion, Molecomb, Queen Alexandra and Oaks Stakes in England
and the Prix de Diane and Prix Royal Oak in France, dam of Reine
(b f 1869 Monarque), winner of the One Thousand Guineas and Oaks
Stakes, the latter the dam of Poule d'Essai des Poulains winner
Regain (b c 1880 Mortemer).
|Other Notable Offspring
Goldfinder (ch c
1848), owned by Mr W Palmer, won the Chester Cup.
Lucio (bl c 1849),
won the Ascot Stakes.
Barrel (ch c 1851),
owned by J Saxon, won Gimcrack Stakes.
Ethelbert (ch c
1850), sire of Isoline (ch f 1860), 2nd dam of the mighty
Isonomy (b c 1875 Sterling).