Monday, August 2, 2010

Famous Sportsman

Jock Whitney was certainly born with the proverbial silver spoon jammed firmly in his pie-hole. He had the cliche Uber-WASP pedigree which included Mayflower passengers and Presidential cabinet members as his ancestors. Jock rowed crew at Yale and shortly after graduating inherited a boat load of money upon his Father's death and later inherited more when his mother died.As they say, he made money the old fashioned way...he inherited it...
He parlayed some of these funds into a traditional sportsman's pursuit: Horse racing. He rode in England's Grand National in 1929 and boasted 4 entries in the Kentucky Derby in the 1930s.
In addition to his prowess as a rider and breeder, Jock was an excellent polo player.My research indicates he was a 4 Goal player which means he knew what he was doing.

During World War II Whitney served in the OSS and was captured by the Nazis. He effectuated a fairly daring escape when the train on which he was being taken to POW camp was strafed by Allied fighters.
His life included much financial success and he was a generous philanthropist. He served as U.S. Ambassador to the U.K. ,an aspiration he described in his Yale yearbook.
Throughout his life he was involved in horse breeding and racing and he had the financial muscle to do it well. There are many other interesting facets of Whitney's life including his dabbling in Broadway and Hollywood productions, cavorting with famous and infamous broads of the day and his coining of the term "crew-cut"....but it is his career in equestrian pursuits which make him notable as a Sportsman.
Finally, for you Tradophites and Prepophiles...Jock was quite well turned out in sportswear in these shots....tweeds, riding kit, white bucks,straw boater etc.


old polo said...

Great brief on a great horseman and individual. Thanks.

Beth Dunn said...

Love the look!

Anonymous said...

There are others who fall into the same general category - Archibald Rutledge comes to mind. Not sure about his sartorial interests though.

Best regards,


Main Line Sportsman said...

Thanks Anon...I think I have read some of his stuff in Sports Afield compendium.

JMW said...

Yep, Whitney left quite a legacy in Lexington. The Headley-Whitney museum is beautiful.