(1932 - 1953) Inducted 2019
Heroic - Herowinkie
Image Source: Australian Racing Museum
Trainer: Jack Holt
Owner: C.B. Kellow
Race record / Prizemoney: 52 starts, 18 wins, 16 seconds, 9 thirds / £28,619
Hall Mark was a small, courageous chestnut racehorse. Outstanding at two years, and Australian champion at three, he won the 1933 Australian Jockey Club Derby, Victoria Derby and Melbourne Cup. His Cup win was often described as ‘one of the gamest ever’ as he ran with an injured foot.
Foaled at Tarwyn Park, New South Wales in 1930, Hall Mark was the son of champion racehorse and sire Heroic and mare Herowinkie, both owned by Australian cyclist Charles B. Kellow. The chestnut’s training later commenced under Jack Holt in the bayside Melbourne suburb of Mordialloc.
The colt first raced in spring 1932, narrowly beaten at Flemington at his second start. The following autumn, at his sixth start, he broke through for his first win, in the Orrong Handicap at Caulfield. In Sydney he won his next three races, including the AJC Sires’ Produce and – carrying a 10 pound weight penalty – the Champagne Stakes.
Hall Mark resumed racing as a three-year-old, winning the weight-for-age Underwood Stakes at Williamstown and running third in the Memsie Stakes before his AJC Derby victory. Second to Palphar in the Caulfield Stakes, he turned the tables on that horse to win the Victoria Derby in race record time.
Three days later, on the morning of the Melbourne Cup, Hall Mark was lame with an inflamed hoof, a doubtful starter.
He responded to treatment but in the final stages of the race, as he reached the front, the hoof split and bled. Apprentice jockey Jack O’Sullivan nursed him to the line defeating veteran Shadow King. The press spoke of courage, brilliance and sheer grit. The public applauded the bravery of the little colt.
Fit again by autumn 1934, and returning to racing, Hall Mark dead-heated with Limarch to win the VRC St Leger and then beat the same horse in the King’s Plate. At the age of four he won six big races including the 1935 Caulfield Stakes and AJC Doncaster Handicap.
At five years there were two further wins.
He retired in 1936 with a career tally of 18 wins (including the dead-heat) and 25 placings from 52 starts.
On Kellow’s death in 1944, the moderately successful thoroughbred sire Hall Mark was sold to Burnside Stud in Ingham, Northern Queensland. For the next nine years, he was predominantly used to sire working horses. In this capacity he had an enduring influence as a progenitor of the emerging specialist breed, the Australian Stock Horse.
“He was a weed to look at, but a mountain of power to ride.” Jim Pike
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