08/02/2002 11:00PM

Cigar, Serena's Song get their day

Email

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Cigar and Serena's Song, two of the dominant horses of the 1990's, will be inducted into the Thoroughbred racing's National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame Monday.

The two modern-day equine heroes will join trainer Grover "Bud" Delp, the late jockey Jack Westrope, and Noor as the 2002 inductees. The induction ceremony will be held at the Fasig-Tipton Sales Pavilion on East Ave. beginning at 10:30 a.m.

Charlsie Cantey, a veteran racing commentator and stakes-winning trainer, will deliver the keynote speech.

A mediocre horse on turf, Cigar flourished when transferred to the dirt by Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott. Cigar, a Maryland- bred son of Palace Music, reeled off 16 consecutive victories, from Oct. 28, 1994, through July 13, 1996. In 1995, Cigar went 10 for 10 - including eight Grade 1 victories - capped by a victory in the Breeders' Cup Classic at Belmont Park.

Cigar's winning streak equaled the modern-day record, set by Citation from 1948-50.

"His consistency was really remarkable," said Mott, who trained Cigar for Allen and Madeleine Paulson. "He showed up when he wasn't necessarily at his best."

Cigar was a two-time Horse of the Year and handicap champion and retired as the richest Thoroughbred in racing, with earnings of $9,999,815.

When Serena's Song retired, she was the richest distaff earner in history, but has since been overtaken by Spain. Serena's Song, owned by Bob and Beverly Lewis, was an 11-time Grade 1 winner and was voted the 3-year-old champion filly of 1995.

Trained by D. Wayne Lukas, Serena's Song beat males in the Jim Beam Stakes and Haskell Invitational. She had a record of 18-11-3 from 39 starts and earnings of $3,283,388.

In a career that began in 1962, Bud Delp trained more than 3,500 winners and won stakes with 68 horses. He was best known for conditioning Spectacular Bid, who was champion at 2, 3, and 4, and won the 1979 Kentucky Derby and Preakness.

Delp, who turns 70 next month and who still trains on the Maryland circuit, also trained stakes winners What a Summer, Calipha, Truly Bound, Include, Sunny Sunrise, and Dispersal.

Westrope was the leading jockey in America in 1933 when he rode 301 winners from 1,224 starts. He rode for 26 years before suffering a fatal injury in spill in the 1958 Hollywood Oaks. Westrope won 2,467 races from 17,497 mounts.

Noor won 12 races from 31 starts from 1947-50 and defeated Citation four times in 1950. Bred in Ireland by the Aga Kahn, he placed in the Epsom Derby before being purchased privately by Charles Howard. He was trained by Burley Parke.