It is with deep regret that I have to inform followers of the Indian Turf of the untimely death – from the dreaded Covid-19 pandemic that is ravaging the land – of Mr. Haroon Saleem, proprietor of the defunct Harsal Stud & Agricultural Farm in Meerut (Uttar Pradesh). He passed away late on 23rd April in a hospital in Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh), where he had relocated after disposing of his business interests in his home town of Meerut.
Starting off with the Dil Aram Stud, on the Mawana Road, he managed the career of Al Marzouk (Roccamare*-Grenadine*), winner of 18 races and runner-up in the Indian Turf Invitation Cup. The hardy bay sired some useful progeny, most notably Furioso, who almost won the Indian Derby of 1981, knuckling under to Track Lightning, Christoffe and Happy Landing with the margins being a head, a head, and a head! Earlier, Furioso had won the Indian 2000 Guineas at Mahalakshmi. Producing such a good horse was a notable feat for a small stud farm with limited resources.
When his brother-in-law, Col. Farook Bijly, took over the management of the Dil Aram Stud, Haroon Saleem established the Harsal Stud on a separate plot, also on the Mawana Road, and stood a speedy son of champion Everyday II* in the shape of Every Time. The handsome grey, a product of the Dashmesh Stud, had won 12 races from 25 starts, including the Sprinters’ Cup, before retiring to stud. Every Time sired numerous excellent handicappers such as All The Time, Pushy, Rollerball, Running Bangle, Treasure Gift, etc.
The genial and ever-smiling breeder also imported the superbly-bred Dahyah[USA] in 1997 but fertility issues scuppered his stud career. As a result, the farm became uneconomical and was wound up around 2007-2008. A most generous host, Haroon Saleem will be much missed by his family and friends. R.I.P.