Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Born at E. P. Taylor's Windfields Farm in Oshawa, Ontario, Canada, The Minstrel was the son of legendary sire Northern Dancer out of the mare Fleur, who was a daughter of Victoria Park. He was a half-brother to the 1970 English Triple Crown champion, Nijinsky II.
A powerfully built and beautiful chestnut colt with four white-stockings and a gentle disposition, The Minstrel was purchased at the 1975 Keeneland yearling auction by a group headed by the flamboyant British racing enthusiast Robert Sangster (1936-2004). Shipped to England, under trainer Vincent O'Brien and ridden by champion jockey Lester Piggott, the horse entered only three races as a two year old, but won them all.
In 1977, The Minstrel won major races at racetracks in England and Ireland. His win in the Epsom Derby, the most prestigious race in the United Kingdom, brought Sangster and his partners into the racing limelight and he soon became one of the world's leading racehorse owners. In addition to the Epsom Derby, The Minstrel won the Irish Derby Stakes and the Ascot Two Thousand Guineas Trial and in his most impressive race against the best horses around, he won the grueling one and a half mile King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes. His performances earned him England's Horse-of-the Year honors for 1977.
After owner Robert Sangster's affair with Jerry Hall, the wife of Rolling Stones lead singer, Mick Jagger, he claimed that Jagger had threatened to do what The Godfather had done in the film and put The Minstrel's head in its owner's bed.
By the end of his brilliant career, out of his nine starts, The Minstrel won seven races, and finished second and third one time. He was re-acquired by Windfields Farm and syndicated for $9 million to stand at stud in Maryland. After the sale of Windfields Farm's Maryland division in 1988, The Minstrel was sent to Overbrook Farm, in Lexington, Kentucky.
The Minstrel died in 1990 and was buried in Overbrook Farm's equine cemetery in Lexington.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details