56| Richard Stone Reeves (American, 1910-2005)



Signed, inscribed, dated ’82

Oil on canvas, 24" x 32"

$50,000 - $70,000

Signed, inscribed, dated '82

"This unique painting by Richard Stone Reeves was commissioned by Mr. and Mrs. Louis E. Wolfson shortly after their brilliant Triple Crown Champion, Affirmed, was retired to stud at Spendthrift Farm. Not only did all three of these great horses raced in the colors of Harbor View Farm, but Harbor View was also the breeder of Exclusive Native and Affirmed. Raise a Native was purchased by Lou Wolfson as a yearling and went undefeated in his two-year-old season, and was voted the American Champion two-year-old Male. One of the most influential sires of his time, Raise a Native sired 74 stakes winners which included Kentucky Derby winner Majestic Prince, the breed-shaping sire Mr. Prospector, as well as Alydar-who was the great rival of Affirmed. Exclusive Native sired an additional Kentucky Derby winner in the great filly, Genuine Risk. Affirmed was a champion at 2, 3 and 4, and Horse of the Year at 3 and 4. His battles with Alydar are legendary, with their Belmont Stakes being arguably the greatest race of all time. Following the pattern of his sire and grandsire, Affirmed also enjoyed success as a stallion, siring multiple champions, among them the great race mare, Flawlessly. This extraordinary painting depicts an amazing dynasty that has had a lasting impact on the American Stud Book" - John Williams

Chapter 6 of Richard Stone Reeves' book, The Golden Post is entirely dedicated to the profound impact that Raise a Native, Affirmed and Exclusive Native had on American Thoroughbred breeding. The chapter is titled: "The All-Americans: Vintage Years for the Bloodline which Bears the Stars and Stripes" and contains a full-page color illustration of the above work on the verso. The caption that accompanies the illustration reads: "UNIQUE TRIPLE - father, son and grandson all at stud on the same farm. From the left, Raise a Native, Affirmed and Exclusive Native are led out at Spendthrift Farm, Kentucky." The introductory paragraph Reads: "By repute the only true American bloodline is that of the Kentucky-based stallion Raise a Native, the most influential of all US dirt track sires."

His first generation is comprised of Native Dancer and Raise You, both pure-bred American. The second generation is Polynesian, Geisha, Case Ace and Lady Glory-American all the way. The eight great grandparents are Unbreakable, Black Polly, Discovery, Miyako, Teddy, Sweetheart, American Flag and Beloved?all bred and born in the U.S.A. with the exception of Frenchman Teddy who, having acquired his green card at the age of 18, stood as a stallion in North America until his death.

This is the bloodline that bears the stars-and-stripes, and immediately behind that third generation there lurks Whisk Broom II, John P. Grier, Ultimus and Man o' War-some of the best and toughest U.S. racing blood. Raise a Native was born to carry Old Glory and there ought to be a stereophonic sound system for visitors as they approach the stallion box occupied by the 24-year-old emperor of Spendthrift Farm. From 'The Halls of Montezuma, to the shores of Tripoli...'"

In this important work Richard Stone Reeves memorializes the best of the Thoroughbred industry - from the Wolfsons as owners to Spendthrift as breeders, and from racehorses to stallions, the Unique Triple and their connections epitomized excellence.

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