Description: FREDERICK WOODHOUSE SNR, (1820 - 1909), FALCON: WINNER OF THE 1864 ADELAIDE CUP, 1865, oil on canvas on board
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signed and dated lower right: Fred Woodhouse / 1865
48.5 x 61.5 cm
Private collection, Adelaide
Deutscher and Hackett, Melbourne, 31 August 2011, lot 110
Private collection, Sydney
The inaugural Adelaide Cup was held on Thursday April 1864 in front of the largest number of spectators to have ever gathered for a horse race in the colony. The governor with all of Adelaide society was in attendance and the grandstand became so full that a carpenter had to be employed at the last minute to prop it up with extra timbers unbeknownst to the spectators above.
The Cup was run over two miles and twelve horses contested the race with Falcon, 'an immense horse, with a tremendous stride',1 running out the winner. Mr P. Dowling, from Melbourne, owned the horse and his success continued with the second placed horse also carrying his distinctive maroon coloured silks. The settling meeting was held at the Globe Inn on Rundle Street and Mr Dowling was awarded the considerable sum of £1,042.5 s for first place.
Falcon, sired by Warhawk and out of May Queen by Forester, led a very successful racing career. He won many major races in addition to the Adelaide Cup. These included the 1863 Ballarat Handicap and Great Centre Handicap, 1864 Melbourne Helter Skelter Stakes, Autumn Handicap and Derby Stakes, 1865 Grand Stand and Trial Stakes and the 1866 Free Handicap. He was placed widely, including 3rd in the 1866 Melbourne Cup.
1. South Australian Register, 22 April 1864, p. 2