Mad Hatter (horse)
|Breeder||August Belmont, Jr.|
|Bellerose Stakes (1918)
Pimlico Autumn Handicap (1919)
Minneola Handicap (1919)
Latonia Championship Stakes (1919)
Yorktown Handicap (1920)
Bowie Handicap (1920)
Jockey Club Gold Cup (1921, 1922)
Metropolitan Handicap (1921, 1922)
Toboggan Handicap (1923)
Suburban Handicap (1924)
Queens County Handicap (1924)
|U.S. Champion Older Male Horse (1921)|
|Last updated on September 20, 2006|
Bred by August Belmont, Jr., he was sired by the great Fair Play, the sire of Man o' War, out of another Rock Sand mare, Mad Cap. He was foaled one year earlier than Man o'War and was a full brother to Belmont Stakes winner Mad Play.
Trained by Sam Hildreth and ridden most of the time by the great jockey Earl Sande, Mad Hatter was known as much for his erratic temperament as for his racing ability. Sande was one of the few jockeys that understood Mad Hatter, especially in his later years.
Late to mature, Mad Hatter was lightly raced and won the Bellerose Stakes as a two-year-old.
At three, he won the Minneola Handicap easily, having only been to the post twice before and never at more than a mile. Then he lost to Sir Barton in the Maryland Handicap at Laurel Park Racecourse, placing second after running fractions of :22 2/5, and :46 3/5. Sir Barton beat him by two lengths.
After winning the inaugural Latonia Championship Stakes over a muddy track by 8 lengths, Mad Hatter went on to Pimlico Race Course in November in the Pimlico Autumn Handicap, beating Sir Barton, who placed a distant third, twelve lengths behind him.
Mad Hatter continued to win graded stakes races as a campaigner with a repeat win of the Jockey Club Gold Cup in 1922, the Toboggan Handicap in 1923, and the Suburban and Queens County Handicaps in 1924.
Fertility problems were reported for Mad Hatter. His brother, Belmont Stakes winner Mad Play, was completely sterile. However, out of 177 foals, Mad Hatter sired 23 graded stakes winners such as The Nut, Cocked Hat, Cresta Run, and the champion filly Snowflake.