Kentucky Derby trophy may race to $150K

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – The Kentucky Derby Trophy is horse racing’s most desired prize, and on June 25, horse racing’s “Run for the Roses” will be sold at auction in West Palm Beach, Fla. Auction Gallery of the Palm Beaches Inc. (AGOPB) will sell at public auction the 1991 Kentucky Derby Trophy won by Calumet Farms “Strike the Gold.” The trophy from the Palm Beach Estate of B. Giles Brophy is certainly the gallery’s most recognized lot to be offered to date.

Kentucky Derby trophy

Made by New England Sterling and weighing in at 62 ounces, the Kentucky Derby Gold Winners Trophy is believed to be the only solid gold trophy awarded annually to the winner of a major American sporting event. It is created from a brick of 14 carat gold, and the horse-and-jockey finial is made of 18 karat gold. The presale estimate is $100,000 to $150,000. Photo courtesy Auction Gallery of the Palm Beaches.

Gallery President Brian Kogan commented, “Having the trophy for auction is like having a very special and one-of-a-kind jewel. There is only one trophy made for the breeders of the horse and no additional copies are made.” The auction will begin at 6 p.m. at AGOPB’s gallery, located at 1609 South Dixie Highway, Suite 5, West Palm Beach.

The Kentucky Derby Trophy is believed to be the only solid gold trophy awarded annually to the winner of an American sporting event. It is a created from a brick of 14 karat gold and the horse and jockey finial is of 18 karat gold. The trophy is made by the New England Sterling; it weighs 62 ounces and measures 16 3/4 inches tall.

To complete the trophy by April, craftsmen begin the process during the fall of the previous year and work hundreds of hours. The entire trophy is handcrafted with the exception of the horse and rider that are both cast from a mold. The horseshoe, fashioned from 18-karat gold, had pointed downward on each of the trophies since 1924. Strike the Gold went on to place third at the Belmont that same year and had a racing career with winnings totaling more than $3.5 million before being sold to the Jockey Club of Turkey for breeding. The trophy carries a pre-auction estimate of $100,000 to $150,000.

Additionally, the June 25 auction will include a selection of English, American, European and Oriental antiques; English, American and Chinese sterling silver; fine art, bronzes, ivories, chandeliers and sconces; and jewelry from estates and individuals in South Florida and the Palm Beaches.

book canterbury

This Regency-style book canterbury has a rectangular top with gadroon edge above the divided V-shaped well, raised on bamboo-shaped legs with conforming cross stretcher. The piece measures 33 1/2 inches tall by 35 3/4 inches wide by 15 3/4 inches deep and carries an estimate of $400 to $500.


This article originally appeared in Antique Trader magazine

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More than 350 lots will be offered, including an impressive English George IV sterling salver by Robert Garrard London 1816, 20 3/4 inches in diameter and weighing 126 ounces; a late 19th century French Fountainbleu porcelain figural clock adorned with a classical lady with wreaths and bocages of exotic flowers standing almost 30 inches high; a superb Chinese white jade vase with cover subtly carved with rooster mask; a 284-piece Coalport China service in the “Hong Kong” pattern; a natural yellow fancy diamond ring weighing 2.4 carats; an American 18th century mahogany Chippendale inlaid extension dining table; and a 1947 Seeburg Symphonola jukebox.

Telephone, absentee, and live Internet bidding is available for bidders with established credit. For more auction details contact the gallery at info[at]agopb.com or visit the firm’s website. For condition reports, contact Leslie Baker or Brian Kogan at 561-805-7115.

antique gold brooch bee form

Estimated at $1,000 to $1,500, this pair of bee brooches are made of 18-karat gold. The bee on the left features ruby eyes and diamond accents on the wings. The bee on the right features a pearl body accent, ruby eyes and platinum wings.

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