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Silver Charm – Lewis Estate

Our 25th anniversary recognition of racing champion Silver Charm is part of an ongoing effort to support the Race Track Chaplaincy of America, partial beneficiaries of the estate of Silver Charm’s owners, Bob and Beverly Lewis. Penny Chenery counted the Lewises among her dearest friends and Secretaria.com is honored to lend its assistance to this worthy cause by overseeing the sale of select artifacts from the Lewises’ personal collection of racing memorabilia.

The majority of artifacts that will be made available for auction pertain to Silver Charm, the popular gray colt who nearly became Thoroughbred racing’s 12th Triple Crown champion. These historic items are targeted to be auctioned on behalf of the Chaplaincy at a later date. In the meantime, private inquiries are welcome, and interested parties can contact information@secretariat.com for details.

 

RACE-WORN WINNING SILKS OF 1997 KENTUCKY DERBY WINNER SILVER CHARM

The original winning silks worn by Silver Charm’s jockey Gary Stevens in the 1997 Kentucky Derby are the prized gem in the Lewis collection. In the 123rd Run for the Roses, the courageous and competitive colt won by a head in a thrilling finish, defeating a talented field of 13 runners including Captain Bodgit, arch-rival Free House and future prominent stallion Pulpit.

The green and yellow nylon racing silks with matching cap — paying tribute to the colors of the Lewises’ alma mater, the University of Oregon — are a veritable piece of racing history. The silks are in excellent condition displaying typical signs of wear commensurate with race-worn use while retaining an overall vibrant appearance. The lower hemline bears the brand label of the manufacturer Fast Colors Unique Sportswear out of Monrovia, California. Adding to the silks’ impeccable provenance, the silks have been signed in black marker along the lower hem by the champion’s Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert along with the personalization “Silver Charm.”

Silver Charm went on to win the Preakness, and narrowly missed sweeping the Triple Crown, finishing second by 3/4 of a length in the Belmont Stakes. In a Hall of Fame racing career spanning 24 starts Silver Charm won over $6.9 million and was named champion 3-year old colt. Now residing at Old Friends Farm in Lexington, he remains as popular as ever, holding the venerable distinction at age 28 of being the oldest living Kentucky Derby winner.

 A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own the authentic winning Kentucky Derby silks from one of its most beloved champions.

 

ORIGINAL COVER ARTWORK, JUNE 7, 1997 BELMONT STAKES EDITION DAILY RACING FORM 

This original hand-colored sketch by the acclaimed artist Pierre “Peb” Bellocq served as the colorful cover for the Daily Racing Form’s June 7, 1997 Belmont Stakes edition. The popular gray colt Silver Charm, having previously won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, was seeking to become American racing’s newest Triple Crown champion.

The image humorously depicts a circus-themed Silver Charm walking a “Triple Crown” tightrope as his connections, jockey Gary Stevens, trainer Bob Baffert, owners Bob and Beverly Lewis and New York Racing Association executives Terry Meyocks and Kenny Noe hopefully look on. Caught in the safety net below are a group of former turf stars who fell short in their Triple Crown quests including Middleground, Tim Tam, Northern Dancer, Majestic Prince, Spectacular Bid and Alysheba. Silver Charm would ultimately join his failed comrades when finishing a heart-breaking close second to Touch Gold in the “Test of the Champion.”

Since his arrival from France in 1955 artist Pierre Bellocq has come to be known to generations of admirers by his familiar nickname “Peb.” His illustrative career spans several decades, with his imaginative work most notably appearing in the Daily Racing Form, where his caricatures have emerged as a true institution in Thoroughbred racing. Now 95, and residing in New Jersey, Bellocq paints occasionally while enjoying retirement.

The art piece is signed and dated by the artist and double-matted in a simple silver frame that measures 21″ x 18” in total. Being the original artwork used on the cover of a national publication that chronicled a high-profile moment in racing history, and viewed by thousands globally, this piece is a very rare and significant offering.


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