salt spray rose


Grey Leg in his racing days and some years later at stud.

Sired by 1885 Princes of Wales’ Stakes winner Pepper And Salt, out of Quetta, Grey Lag was born in the United Kingdom in 1891 as “a dark liver chestnut with white flecks in his coat, and even at age four, his legs were still liver-colored, while his body was spotted and flecked with patches of liver and grey, giving him a roan appearance that was considered ‘most attractive.’ By the age of ten, he was snow white, with some brown flecking. He had, it was said, ‘the gentlest of dispositions.’”

His full-brother Cayenne won the 1894 Criterion Stakes, half-brother Frontier, by Orme, won the 1898 Dewhurst Stakes and 1899 King Edward VII Stakes and half-sister Helm, by Morion, the Yorkshire Oaks and the Coronation Stakes. In Germany Helm produced the 1906 Deutsches St. Leger and 1907 Grosser Preis von Baden winner Hammurabi

Grey Leg ran in three races in a span of just 14 days as a juvenile, where he was placed in the first two before breaking his maiden in the Two Year Old Plate at Newmarket. 
The following year, 1894, he won at distances between 5 furlongs and 1¼ miles. He ran in 13 races and won five of them, including the Champion Stakes at Newmarket, Portland Plate at Doncaster and the Suburban Handicap at Epsom.
At the age of four he won the New Biennial Stakes and the All-Aged Stakes.
“At the close of his racing career he was taking to Islington and presented as a Hunter Improvement Stallion, winning a Queen’s Premium. Many a grey hunter and hack trace back to Grey Leg, but he did leave a mark in the racing world, having sired a number of modest winners of minor races from mostly less-fashionably bred mares, one of which became second dam of Rose Prince. Several classic winners and top French runners descend from Grey Leg through his daughters.”
All in all, he retired with a record of 28: 12-7-0 and earnings of £6,644.

During his many years at stud, he stood at different places, for a while at the Compton Stud in Dorsetshire.
He sired the “best tempered, best constitutioned, and soundest” Senseless, Bass Rock and Quelpart who both were sent to South Africa as stallions, Grey Plume who became a notable sire in France, 1915 Hopeful Stakes and Caterham Plate championne Silver Spray, Barrier who produced Indolence who in turn produced Prince Rose who sired Princequillo, Grey Lady - daughter of the bad tempered Vampire and half-sister to Batt and 1899 Triple Crown champion Flying Fox.

“Although a good racehorse, it would be hard to classify Grey Leg as a successful sire; none of his offspring won notable races, and he never came close to entering the leading sires lists. But his contribution to the breed through the (usually) distant descendants of his daughters, many of which carried his grey coat, can’t be denied.”

In 1916, Grey Lag was put to sleep and was buried in the garden of Captain Ernest Tanner at Newmarket.

Photos’ source: X