Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Panton, Thomas (1731-1808)

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PANTON, THOMAS (1731–1808), sportsman, born in 1731, was son of Thomas Panton, who was master of the king's running-horses at Newmarket. A sister, Mary, married in 1750 Peregrine Bertie, fourth duke of Ancaster. Thomas Panton the younger lived as a country gentleman at Fen Ditton in Cambridgeshire, and was high sheriff for that county in 1789. He kept foxhounds, and is said once to have killed a fox close to the Rubbing House at Newmarket, after a twenty-five mile run without a check. The time, unhappily, is not recorded. His chief reputation was gained as an owner of racehorses; he was a member of the Jockey Club in 1753, within a few years of its foundation, and figured conspicuously on the turf until his death. That he enjoyed a good character may be assumed from the fact that the author of that scurrilous book ‘The Jockey Club’ (1792) could find no harm to say of him. ‘Tommy Panton's address’ is one of the ingredients prescribed in the poetical squib ‘A Receipt to make a Jockey.’ He won the Derby in 1786 with Noble. His best horse probably was Feather. He died on 29 Nov. 1808 at Newmarket.

[Black's Jockey Club and its Founders; Post and Paddock by H. H. Dixon; Ann. Reg. 1789, 1808; Gent. Mag. for 1808.]

J. A. D.