posted on 3/15/2012 3:34 pm
On a spring day in May of 1986, a colt by the trotting sire
Baltic Speed was foaled in Cream Ridge, New Jersey. He would change the
trotting world forever. That sibling, named
Valley Victory, was bred by Valley High Stables (Bill Weaver) and sold as a
yearling for $60,000.00 to Arlene Traub of New York City on the advice from
horseman Pat Waldo.
Valley Victory went into training as a 2 year old, he became very sick and was
rushed to the University of Florida clinic in Gainesville, Florida. There is where
he successfully recovered from surgery.
After his recovery, he learned his early lessons from trainer John Dokey,
before being sent north to trainer Steve Elliot. Despite starting late, the colt still earned $225,724.00
on his way to a Breeders Crown Victory at Pompano Park in a track record time of
1:58.1F with Hall of Fame driver Bill O’Donnell in the bike.
In his 3-year-old
campaign in 1989, he teamed up with the Magic Man again to win his first seven
(7) starts. This journey included wins in the double heat Yonkers Trot in
1:59.3H and 1:58.3H respectively. His performance at the Meadowlands however, in
his New Jersey Stakes final, is what legends are made of. He won that race
overcoming all odds from an almost impossible position. Tragically, just before
his highly anticipated appearance in the Hambletonian, he took very ill and
never raced again.
His racing career
consisted of 14 starts with 11 victories and one (1) second place finish. His
total earnings of $485,307.00 on the racetrack are outstanding and his record
of 1:55.3 seems pedestrian by today’s standards. There is no doubt that he was
way truly ahead of his time.
In the fall of
1989 Tony Pedone, a prominent horse owner, had a vision about keeping our
trotting stallions in North America instead of exporting them to Europe. He approached George Segal about purchasing
Valley Victory as a stallion. They made an offer to buy Valley Victory from
Arlene Traub to stand him in stud in New Jersey.
His first crop in
1991 produced the likes of Hambletonian winner Victory Dream, Bullville Victory,
and Armbro Monarch. In 1992, he followed
up with Donerail, and two great fillies named Lookout Victory and Lifelong Victory.
It became even better in 1993 with Mr. Vic, Dancers Victory, Act of Grace and
both the Hambletonian winner and runner-up Continental Victory and Lindy Lane. The following years produced Yankee Glide,
and Muscles Yankee. The legacy of Valley
Victory undoubtedly lives on through the offspring of his sons and grandsons. The
anxiously anticipated first crop of Muscle Hill will sell this fall.