About the races - Hall of Fame
Memorial of Tomasz Dul
(held during the season inauguration)
Tomasz Dul (born in 1950, died in 2005)
His star shone forth after winning the Derby in 1989 on Krezus, trained by Mirosław Stawski. He is able to prepare horses during training like no one else. He didn’t overuse the whip in races. He was able to win comfortable by a nose, e.g. Oaks on Królowa Śniegu, riding with great sensitivity and stoically. Starting from the late ’80s and until his tragic death of 25 February 2005, in a car accident, he was the most popular jockey in Służewiec. Then, the audience used to call very often: “Come on Dulu, the king of track”!
He made his debut in Służewiec in 1967, but then he had long breaks, when he worked in, among others, the house factory. He didn’t win the first race earlier than in 1978. His real career began three years later and he received the title of jockey in 1983, winning the 100th race on Knieja, trained by Andrzej Walicki.
After leaving the Walicki’s stable, he worked 8 years for Stawski and Dorota Kałuba, winning the Derby on her horses three times (1997 – on Mustafa, 1998 – on Arctic and 2000 – on Dżamajka). He worked in the stable of Maciej Janikowski for the last two years (won the Derby in 2004 riding Montbard, when Królowa Śniegu was moved from the first to third place for crossing).
In addition to five victories in the Derby, he won the Prime Minister Stakes six times and the Great Warsaw Race three times. In 2000, he set a record of winnings in Służewiec in a single season – 139, which will probably never be beaten. He worked for three seasons in the stable of one of the Sheikhs in Abu Dhabi and he is the only Polish rider who has raced on UAE tracks. ?Tomasz Dul was undoubtedly, next to Jerzy Jednaszewski and Mieczysław Mełnicki, one of the greatest jockeys in the history of Służewiec.
He passed the trainer exam a month before the tragic consequences of driving into the vicinity of Warka (he wanted to do a favour to his colleague from the stable and bring her children after winter holidays). He planned to end his riding career in a year or two years and to start his career in training. “The King of the Track” was bid farewell at the cemetery in Pyry by the crowd of his fans and a horse decorated with the mourning colours.
Memorial of dr Aleksander Falewicz
(the first hurdle race of the season, the first half of May)
Aleksander Falewicz (born in 1924, died in 1996)
He graduated from veterinary school in 1951 in Warsaw. He was very active in many fields related to horses – not just racing, but also in sports. He headed the Polish riding team for the Olympic games in Rome and Mexico, also ran a sports stable in Służewiec, where the great trainer Dorota Kałuba started her adventure with horses. He was in charge of the Selection Department in the early ’60s, and he was the head of equine hospital in Służewiec for the next two years.
His widow, Mrs. Barbara Falewicz, talks about Aleksnder Falewicz. ‘My husband continued the family tradition. His father, colonel Falewicz, ran the stable on the Pole Mokotowskie before the war. He trained such wonderful horses as Wisus, the winner of the Derby in 1936. His father-in-law had a stable in Służewiec by 1949. Aleksander went through all levels of riding. He won a total of 160 races, including as many as 146 hurdle races and steeplechase, due to be too heavy to take part in flat races. He started in the Great Pardubicka Steeplechase three times. Once he was second, once he was fifth and once he did not complete the race. The horse he rode was killed on the most difficult obstacle, i.e. taxis. ?My husband first began to train horses in Kozienice, where in 1956 he became the stud deputy director responsible for sports and racing. As a trainer, he was ranked high in the championship. In 1957, the St. Leger was won by Viareggio trained by him, then Cedric won the Derby in the next season, rode by Arkadiusz Goździk, and two years later, Donna Aqui, rode by Jerzy Jednaszewski, won the Great Warsaw Race. Then my husband was the manager of the Selection Department, and later of the equine hospital.
We left for Vienna in 1971. My husband trained horses for 18 years. From among the horses he trained, Henrykus won the Derby in Austria in 1982. In 1989, we moved to Munich, where Alexander was a trainer for five years. In total, as a trainer, my husband won 1364 races. He died two years after retirement’, ends Barbara Falewicz.
Memorial of Jerzy Jednaszewski
(first decade of June, a race for horses prepared along the side path to the Derby)
Jerzy Jednaszewski (born in 1930, died in 2009)
Great jockey, then a trainer, and after retirement, first a member and then chairman of the Technical Committee. He was called diminutively “Jerzyk” by track frequent visitors. He was not only a great sportsman (he won the Great Warsaw Race 8 times, the Derby 5 times and the Great Europe Stakes twice in Cologne), but also one of the biggest personalities in the history of horse racing in Służewiec. He was always bursting with energy, humour and he was distinguished by cheerfulness.?He was born in 1930 on the track at Polna Street. His father, Marian Jednaszewski, was then a jockey in the stable run by Michał Molenda, father of Stanisław Molenda, one of the best trainers in the history of Służewiec.
In January 1946, he began working as a stable boy for the trainer Stanisław Ziemiański, father of Bogdan Ziemiański. The first time he took part in the race was not earlier than in May next year because my father thought that he had to first learn to ride well. He gained his first victory after two months, but it took him 10 years to win the 100th race and get the title of jockey. Even as a jockey candidate, he won the Derby in 1957 riding on Pearym. As a first-time jockey, he also won in the Great Warsaw Race on the same horse.
He was a class jockey, with an elegant silhouette and international fame. In 1974, he signed the contract and left for work to Germany, where, riding on Windwurf, he won the race for the Great Europe Stakes in Cologne in the next two seasons. He won 757 races in his career, being successful on tracks in Poland, Germany, Austria, Hungary and Czechoslovakia. He got the title of champion in Warsaw twice (1960-1961). He completed his riding career in the 1977 season, winning the Great Warsaw Race on Dersław, trained by Stanisław Molenda. He started working as a trainer next season. He debuted splendidly. Pawiment was the winner of the Great Warsaw Race, of which he had the fondest memories. It was a close shave for him to win in the 1988 Derby, when prepared by him Iluzjan was defeated by Diablik by a nose in he winning post after the battle from the start.
Jerzy Jednaszewski ended his trainer career in 1994. Later, he worked in the Technical Committee, first as a judge, and then as a chairman.
Memorial of Bogdan Ziemiański
(held in the second half of August during the annual Arabian Day)
Bogdan Ziemiański (born in 1930, 2009)
Great jockey and trainer, the son of a well-known rider and trainer Stanisław Ziemiański, the father of trainer Krzysztof Ziemiański.
He started his riding career in 1946 in Lublin. He moved to Służewiec during the same season and won 20 races there. He got the title of jockey in 1949. His biggest success was the victory in the Derby in 1966, riding on Ataraks. Moreover, he won the Oaks three times. In 1971, Dalila, ridden by him, won the race from place to place, beating the Derby winner Daglezja and the subsequent St. Leger winner Bostella. He equestrian practice in Hungary, for two years, also raced on tracks in Sweden, so he then good contacts, especially with breeders of Arabian horses and trainers who are willing to send him to training them in Służewiec.
The best Swedish Arabian of Mr. Bogdan was Millennium, which won the Europa Stakes in 2003. ?He started to work as a trainer in 1976 and continued it until the last weeks before his death, which occurred on 2 February 2009. He trained such brilliant horses as Duplikat (he won the Prime Minister Stakes in 1977), Dżudo (first in the Ruler Stakes and St. Leger and second in the Derby in 1980) and Vilnius, which was best over short distances (born in 1981) and which won 14 times, including twice successes in the Criterium.
Bogdan Ziemiański was a well-known and popular figure among the regulars at Służewiec track, and his colleagues and associates valued him for his modesty and kindness. He was also known for his extraordinary care of the horses, and therefore, he gained the trust of many owners. In an interview, he said: ‘There are different horses and you have to treat each of them individually. You can not do anything in a conventional way. A gentle mare cannot work as much in training as a sturdy and strong horse. I treat horses in the same way as people’.
?Memorial of Fryderyk Jurjewicz
(held during the Derby Gala, the Rzeczna Award until 2010)
Fryderyk Jurjewicz (born in 1871, died in 1929)
Breeder and organizer of horse racing in Poland, long-standing president of the Society for the Encouragement of the Horse Breeding in Poland (1910-1923). He headed the Board of State Studs in the Ministry of Agriculture and National Patrimony. The Great Warsaw Race was called with his name during the interwar period.
When the German troops became the threat for Warsaw in 1915, stables and most stud farms began to be evacuated deeper in Russia (at the time of the Polish Kingdom, our stud farms and stables operated within the breeding and racing organizations of Tsarist Russia, and the Polish horses successfully competed on tracks in Petersburg or Moscow). Some horses from racing stables found refuge on the Kołomiask track in St. Petersburg, where they continued to participate in organized horse races, and studs were scattered around the land of Russia. Fryderyk Jurjewicz, who was also the vice-president of the Racing Society in Odessa before the war, started a large-scale action aimed at bringing all Polish horses back to the track in Odessa. He leased the track for the Polish purposes and organised horse racing in exile for 4 years surrounded by the Tsarist Russians, Ukrainians, Bolsheviks, Germans, Austrians, White Guards, French intervention body and Bolsheviks again. This gave employment and chances of survival to many workers of the Pole Mokotowskie and Polish stud farms, and above all kept our breeding offspring.
At the same time there was a huge shortage of food supply, lack of feed and total historical turmoil in Russia. On 6 April 1919, when the French intervention body finally decided to leave Odessa, Jurjewicz decided to leave the city and go to Warsaw with his all “belongings”. Joining the Division of General Żeligowski, with over 250 racing horses, the fleet went to Poland through troubled areas of Ukraine and Romania. After more than two months of wandering, on 28 June 1919, as many as 252 racing horses headed by Juriewicz arrived in Warsaw on the Mokotów Track. As the track itself suffered little damage during the war, despite the fact that horses were hugely exhausted, the first horse racing was held in postwar Warsaw on 7.09.1919.
Memorial of Jerzy Elias
(hurdle race, held in the last decade of July or at the beginning of August in recent years)
Jerzy Elias (born in 1924, died in 1999)
Called “associate professor” in the racing environment. He started his career in Służewiec in the early ’50s. As a student he participated also in the hurdle races, but he suffered a serious accident in the flat race. He returned to the track as a veterinary surgeon and began to work in the equine hospital. Then he became a scales judge, but he passed into Służewiec legend as an unusual starter. He had an international license as the only one in this profession.
In the book “Żokej”, co-written with Wojciech Zielinski, Mieczysław Zieliński, who celebrated his 60th anniversary of work at the races, describes Jerzy Elias as follows: ‘He made the whole show of the starts to races. Beautifully dressed in a coat and hat, and sometimes in the cylinder – with the inherent binoculars in hand – he was driving a stylish carriage to start. There he used to became a totally different person. He distanced himself from the jockeys, whom, after all, he knew well. There were no colleagues. Here, they all were not on first-name terms with each other. He became equally strict and fair to all. Its elegant dress was supposed even to more emphasize the distance.
Once jockeys started up from the rope and the horse had to be kept to the last minute. There were no false starts. Impatient rider just had to hang on the ropes.’ When a machine with starter boxes appeared in Służewiec in 1975, he invented the so-called “matriculation”, or exam, which all the horses prepared to debut had to pass. His achievement passed into legend when as many as 11-year-old horses were aligned in the starter machine within just 12 seconds.
The Służewiec story describes also an event that occurred during the start to the Derby in 1982. Upon a signal of the “associate professor”, all the horses started except Otmar, before which the door did not open. Jerzy Elias could have regarded him as left at the start, however his innate sense of justice did not allow him to do so. He made an instant decision and the horses, which already ran a few hundred meters, returned again to start. This time they all started and .. the Derby winner was Otmar.
Jerzy Elias died suddenly during a beautiful day race in May 1999.