Inductees to the Delaware Park Wall of Fame
Delaware Park Racecourse was constructed and opened in 1937 and has enjoyed a long and successful history in the horse racing industry. Last year, the Delaware Park Racecourse unveiled its Delaware Park Wall of Fame for the first time, with the inaugural inductees being Willie Shoemaker, Henry Clark, Jane and Henry Lunger’s Christiana Stables, William Du Pont Jr. and Kelso. This year, five new inductees have been selected under the same criteria, consisting of a non-participant, horse, owner, trainer and jockey. These names will be inducted into the Delaware Park Wall of Fame to bring honor and pay tribute to their contribution to horse racing.
The new inductees consist of R.R. Carpenter, Chris McCarron, Damascus, Virgil “Buddy” Raines and Foxcatcher Farms. Each one of these inductees deserves a place on the Delaware Park Wall of Fame, as they have not only left their mark on horse racing history, but on the Delaware Park Racecourse.
Damascus was a wonderful racehorse, sired by Sword Dancer and owned by Mrs. Edith Bancroft. During his racing career, he was trained by Frank Whiteley and was seen in action at Delaware Park in four racing events. Named the 1967 Horse of the Year, Damascus won twenty-one of his thirty-two career starts, of which his victories included the William Du Pont Handicap, the Preakness Stakes, the Jockey Club Gold Cup, the Belmont Stakes, the Woodward and the Travers. He retired from racing in 1968, with career earnings of over $1.1 million. Jockey Chris McCarron started his career in 1974, and by the time he retired in 2002 he had won 7 141 races, including the Breeders’ Cup Classic, Preakness Stakes and the Kentucky Derby. He won many stakes races and was awarded the 1980 Eclipse Award, plus leading jockey awards a few times over. In 1989, he was inducted into the Saratoga Springs Racing Hall of Fame.
Trainer, Virgil “Buddy” Raines is honored for his sixty-five years as a top horse trainer, who trained outstanding horses such as Open Fire, Cochise, Greek Money, Masked General and Everget. He also found himself in the winners’ circle many times, including the Saratoga Cup and Preakness Stakes. R.R.M. Carpenter is remembered for his time on the Delaware Racing Commission, as he was chairman from 1971 to 1989 and Foxcatcher Farms was owned by William du Pont Jr., who built and opened the Delaware Park Racecourse. During his time as racehorse owner, Foxcatcher Farms raced many spectacular horses under their silks, including Berlo, Fairy Chant, Rosenna, Chevation, Rosemont and Parlo.
All the inductees bring back fond memories of their time at Delaware Park Racecourse, and their dedication to the sport of horse racing. They will now be immortalized with the first inductees and those who are to follow.