Tropics is a riches to rags and back to riches story.
Bred in America, he is a closely related to a number of useful horses and was expensively sold both as a foal and as a yearling, initially for $280,000 and then for $700,000.
He began his career on the track for one of the world’s top racing operations, Godolphin, which is owned by Sheikh Mohammed al Maktoum of Dubai.
Then the wheels came off. He failed to even make it to the racecourse for Godolphin and in October 2011 was resold for just £2,625.
It was another 11 months before he made his debut on the track, little more than three months short of his fifth birthday. Many top horses have already had a full career and been retired to stud by that age.
Tropics responded superbly to the patient handling of his new owner-trainer, Dean Ivory, and in his first nine starts only once finished out of the first three, four victories culminating in his success in the Sky Bet Dash at York in late July 2013 which saw Ivory pocket a first prize of £31,125.
After a win in Listed race company at Newmarket, he brought his 2013 season to a triumphant end in the Group 3 Bengough Stakes at Ascot – the first Group race victory of Ivory’s career.
The Ivory string was laid low with illness and suffered a slow start to 2014 but, following four disappointing performances, Tropics produced a top notch effort to beat all except the brilliant Slade Power in the Group 1 Darley July Cup at Newmarket.
He followed that with a second victory in the Hopeful Stakes at Newmarket, but was a disappointing 14th in the Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock Park.
Next he went back to Ascot for the Group 3 Bengough Stakes but could only finish fourth. He then contested the QIPCO British Champions Sprint on heavy going and ran a fine second to Gordon Lord Byron.
In 2015, Tropics continued to be a tremendous flagbearer for Ivory, finishing a neck second to Muhaarar in the Darley July Cup at Newmarket.
He led a high-class field all the way that day until the shadow of the post, when Muhaarar, who was receiving 6lb, grabbed him. The winner went on to extend his winning run in Group 1 sprints, winning four in succession.