Mary Cunningham Stephenson LeBlond sponsored the first Jay Trump Timber race at the 1966 High Hope Steeplechase, named in honor of her “Cinderella Chaser,” the great Jay Trump. After more than 40 years, this remains one of our signature NSA (National Steeplechase Association) sanctioned races. It is with great pride, and fond memories of the late Mrs. LeBlond, one of our most cherished supporters, that we present The Jay Trump Timber Race.
Jay Trump was purchased for $1,250 as a 3 year old in 1960. His rise to prominence began in 1963 with his first victory in the Maryland Hunt Cup, which he followed by sweeping Maryland’s Triple Crown of Timber racing in 1964 (the My Lady’s Manor, the Maryland Hunt Cup and the Grand National).
In 1965 Jay Trump was sent to England to prepare for Aintree’s Grand National. In that historic race Jay Trump defeated a field of 47 horses, becoming only the second American horse ever to win the world’s foremost steeplechase. Jay Trump returned to the United States to win his third Maryland Hunt Cup in 1966, after which he was retired to Mrs. LeBlond’s farm near Cincinnati.
The courage and heart that enabled Jay Trump to win 15 races from 23 starts over 5 seasons provided him with a long life as well. This wonderful ‘chaser died at age 31 and is buried at the finish line of the High Hope Steeplechase at the Kentucky Horse Park. Every year during the High Hope Steeplechase, friends of High Hope remember this brave hero and the colors he carried, by placing yellow roses in black silk on his grave.