Goodbye, Phar Lap, Goodbye!
Sung to the tune Wearing of the Green
Phar Lap was a champion thoroughbred racehorse who has become an Aussie icon. He dominated Australian racing, winning the Melbourne Cup and other premiere races. He travelled overseas and on March 20, 1932, Phar Lap won the the Agua Caliente Handicap in Mexico. It was the world's richest horse race at $US 50,000 and he won it in track-record time.
This achievement came within 24 hours of the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Together they were hailed in newspapers as Australian success stories.
Phar Lap was foaled on 4 October 1926 in New Zealand. Phar Lap was purchased for only 160 guineas ($US 336.00) by American owner Dave Davis. Trainer Harry Telford brought Phar Lap to Australia as a two year old where he was trained and started his distinguished racing career.
After a sudden and mysterious illness, Phar Lap died in America in 5 April 1932. There has been much speculation at the time and continues today, over whether Phar Lap was purposely poisoned. At the time of his death, he was the third highest steaks-winner in the world.
Phar Lap's remarkable heart now resides at the National Museum of Australia in the nation's capital, Canberra. His heart was 6.2 kg (13.7 lbs.) compared to a normal horse's heart of 3.2 kg
You all know a mighty racehorse,
With that well-known jockey,
No doubt he was a wonder —
And when he crossed the ocean
There's no doubt that all we Aussies
Tom Woodcock should be mentioned,
But what about the owners —
I was talking to a friend of mine
"Well, I really can't believe it,"
When Australia heard the news
Now that we have lost him,
We got the news in Melbourne,
But, along with dear old Carbine,
Well, I trust that all who loved him