On his return to Cambridge Stud, Hogan received a pedigree in the mail and knew he had found his new stallion.
On pedigree Hogan was sold. Sir Tristram was by the Champion English Three-Year-Old Sir Ivor, from the Royal Charger sire-line, out of the Round Table mare Isolt. His dam carried the impeccable bloodlines of Princequillo, My Babu, Feola, Lavendula, plus Isolt's third dam, Selene, was the dam of the great Hyperion.
The colt's race record was less spectacular, although his owner, US Ambassador to Ireland Raymond Guest, regarded his French-trained colt highly enough to set him for the still-unachieved Kentucky-Epsom Derby double.
Unable to return immediately to Europe, Hogan asked the British Bloodstock Agency to inspect the horse, their report being even less flattering than the horse's race record.
The experts didn't like his rear end at all. Hogan though recalled the words of his father, an Irishman and a good judge, who told him: 'no horse is perfect: put up with faults behind the saddle - don't give away too many up front.
When he received a description of his front end, and finally viewed him, Hogan knew he was right to confound the experts by buying Sir Tristram.
But buying 'Paddy'-Sir Tristram - was only the first hurdle. A fire at the farm in England where Sir Tristram was quarantined saw him narrowly escape from the flames; then a well-aimed kick by a mare during the subsequent confusion nearly finished his stud career before it began.
On arrival Sir Tristram's ill temper and some shareholder rejection caused Hogan more than a few headaches.