The handicaps for the two principal events of the Auckland Racing Club Winter Meeting made their appearance during the week, and they appear to be up to Mr Evett's best form. Having a rough lot to
deal with, he has seneibly commenced on a light scale, and with list <Hb in the Great Northern Steeplechase, the owners of the top weight, Guy Fawkes, have no reason to growl; in fact, I think he reads as well aa anything engaged. With 61b between them, Guy Fawkes and Belle should be well brought together, while I don't think that MiBS Griffiths is by any means badly used with lOst. Of the others, Whalebone to me appears -the best, and 9st 71b ought not trouble him after the way he shaped at Takapuna on Monday last. In the Hurdles, Guy Fawkes and Shotover occupy the pbst of honour with list ?lb each-, and the better of the two will require some boating should they ccc the Jiost. The acceptances for both events are due on Tuesday next. I have it on excellent authority that if he is passed as sound, the stallion Captivator, got by the English Derby winner Caractacus, will pass into the hands of the New Zealand Stud Company. Mr T. Hawkins Smith, who has a large station on the Clarence River, New South Wales, and who owhs the horae, passed through here e7i route to England a few days back, and a deal was made with him to secure Captivator, but the particulars have not yet tt an spired. The Winter Meeting of the Takapuna Jockey Club was a fitting conclusion to a thoroughly successful season. The weather was perfection, the attendance the largest seen on the course, the fields large, and the racing of an interestlrigdescription ; so that it is almost unnecessary to state that all went as merrily as the proverbial marriage bell. The gatherings of the Takapuna Club, it may be safely eaid, are the most popular outside of the Ellerelie course, and if the racing track is only enlarged by the time the next season comes round, the Club can fairly rockon on achieving even a greater success than they have in the past. Guy Fawkes's victory in the Wanganui Steeplechase on Monday proves him to be a better horse than eomo imagined. In Erebus tad The Drnid there were two very fair performers behind him, and aa he carried the decent impost of list, and won as he liked, it may be safely concluded that he is capable of accomplishing much better things in first-class company. Guy Fawkes was ridden by Edgecombe, who gives every promise of blossoming into one of our very best cross-country riders. The rising two-year-old half-brother to Trenton (by Antorou) ■ is being broken-in by George Wright. He is a very handsome well-grown colt, and judging by appearances he should develop into a racehorse. A pleasing feature of the Dunedin Winter Meeting was the success of Mr G. G. Stead's colours, that gentleman by the aid of Marion annexing the two leading events of the first day's racing. Marion is a four-year-old daughter of Maribyrnong and Peeress, and firet saw the light of day at Mr W. Walters's stud farm at Papakura. I learn from Wanganui that Salvage has had to be destroyed by the aid of a friendly bullet, owing to his leg having been broken by a kick irom another horse. ' Salvage 1 was presented to Mr S. Powell by the late Mr R. H. Vallance some few weeks previous to the letter's death, and made his debut at the racing game in the Wellington Cup of 1882, carrying the colours of his breeder, the Hon. W. Robinson, but he suffered a head defeat at the hands of Hilda. He won the Great Autumn Handicap some months later on, and during the noxt Beason hie owner made him a great "pot" for the Dunedin Cup, bun he was bowled over by the little-thought-of Adamant. Salvage will be best remembered by local turfites as winning the Auckland Cup of 1883, and the little " ins and outs " of bis victory would form an interesting chapter for New Zealand turf history. Mackay, the winner of the Royal Stakes at Randwick on Monday last, waa recently known as Silver King, and has won several races in country districts. He is the property of Mr H. Gxenham, tho ownor of Cerise and Blue, who purchased him a short time ago at Mudgee(N.S.W.) after winning a Selling Race. I notice that Mackay was made a warm favourite for the principal event at Canterbury Park several days ago, but he suffered a bead defeat. Mr Oxenham, however, was recompensed later in the afternoon by winning the May Handicap with Ellington, a son of Marvellous. .
I notice that Mr E. Mitcbelson's three Musket colts taken to Australia by MrW. E. Dakin have been nominated for the A.J.C» Champagne Stokes, run nexc Autumn. The Leolinus —Lure colt, who haa been named Whakawai, is also entered for the event in Mr Mitchelson's name.
Those who follow the doings of the Australian two-year-olds during the now dead eeason with the view of picking the next V.R.C. Derby, certainly have a very arduous task set them. The performances of the different youngsters have been of such an erratic nature that it is a difficult matter to get anything like a correct line aa to the real merits of the several cracks; and at present the great three-year-old race bears an unusually open appearance. In referring to the matter, "Augur" baa the following anent the leading youngsters, and his remarks will doubtless be perused with interest:—Acme, in the spring, flashed upon the scene like a brilliant meteor, and, after she emerged from the Hummer retirement insisted upon by her owner, she still further added to her reputation by running five furlongs in the fastest time on record; though with reference to the lm. l£s. returned I am informed that the Hawkesbury timekeeper first stated that the time was lm. 3£a , but was induced to alter it by the holders of private watches, who declared that the correct time was lm. lis. Acme did not maintain her reputation at Kandwick, and some of her fondest admirers lost faith in her. Is it possible that the descendants of Chester are non-stayers ? There can bo no doubt as to their ability to get over the ground at a wonderful rate, but they do not shine over courses beyond six or seven furlongs. First Chester certainly ran a great race with Nordenfeldt in the V.R.C. Derby, but fJralla and Monte Christo have failed to distinguish themselves when long courses have had to be compassed. Yet I don't despair of seeing a veritable wonder some day claimed by Chester. He was an excellent stayer himself, as he proved in the V.R.C. Derby, Melbourne Cup, and other races. Vespasian, the eiro of Blairgowrie, on the contrary, was only a miler, and it is possible that his eon may prove one of the same kidney. Blairgowrie is a much more stylish colt tban his stable companion Ohoeham, but the build of the latter is more to my liking for a Derby horee. Cheshatn ran badly enough at the A.J.C. Autumn Meeting, but I've not forgotten the gameness he displayed when he won the Aecotvale Stakes at Flemington. The Hon. James White has Philip Augustus, Trident, Acme, Volcano, and Tamarisk in his Derby string, and it would be a wide man who could select the best of these. Volcano, being a gelding, will have the advantage of a 51b. allowance, which will help him materially. Philip Augustus is a grand fellow to look at, only requiring time to mature, and Acme and Tamarisk are both flyers, but as a Derby horse I prefer Trident to any of these. He is not so free a goer as his brother Navigator, but in the hands of a vigorous horseman he is an extraordinary finisher. Of the Hon. W. Long's pair, Maddelina and Crossfire. I perfer the fatter for a Derby, firstly, because she is an even-tempered animal, and, secondly, because she has proved her ability to stay. It was a performance of great merit to win the Free Handicap an she did at Randwick. My Lord, who has also been added to Mr Long's string, ran like a "waster" after he was purchased. . Among the Victorian-bred two year old* Jhe'best undoubtedly are The Nun
and Dividend, who are quite second-raters ; but the New South Wales bred Kenneth and the New Aglaos belong to Victorians, and th« batter of the two may perform Creditably; but even they ate a lottg way from first-class?, ftttti 1 despair of seeing the V.R.& Derby Stake kfeptin Victoria^ uL'leSa th' Ore is BOmothing in the dark division capably of overthrowiug the New South Wales phalanx. From " Sir Launcelofc'e l! notes I learn thai) he has been interviewing MartiniHenry'syearlingsister and Nordenfeldt'sfull brother purchased at tho last New Zealand Stud Company salo by tho Hon. W. Robinson. The eood looks of the pair seem to have made a \)ig impression on my confrere, and ho "enthuses" thus:— Having seen both Wood Nymph and Elfin, I can safely say that as regards make and Rhape, they are not in the same street with Engagement, and it looks go lor anything ehe should break tho spell which has so far httnj* Over the members of the weaker sex belonging to the famous Juliet family, and should place many victories to the credit of the " white jacket and black and gold rash.*' "How like his half-brother, Sardonyx," was the remark I made to the Hon. W. Robinson, when I was ushered into the presence of Enfilade*, the yearling son of Musket and Gnyi. Like his game little ha}f.-brothef, he is brown in colour, with d white star on his forehead, and his near hind fetlock is white. As, however, he stands at present a little over 15 hands, he will be rather bigger than Sardonyx, who was one of the gamest horses thai ever looked through a bridle, t have never seen Nordenfeldtj and therefore cannot compare him with his younger brother, Enfilade ; but Musket I have soon, find Enfilade ha* just the propelling power the old horse possessed, while through his dnm he inherits that quality which his sire lacked, He moved round tho purldOck in faultlbL-s style, and I was immensely pleased with him—in short, he is a perfect gentleman from the tip of his nose to the butt of his tail. At a special meeting of the Invercargill Racing Club, charges made against certain stewards and the handicapper (Mr H. Howells) by Mr C. Raines were considered, when a vote of confidencein the handicapper was passed and Mr Raines was disqualified from training or racing on the Invorcargill racecourse either as owner or in any other way interested in any horse. This season the Hon. James White has already won upwards of £12,000 in stakes, to which large Bum the chief contributions camefrom two St. Legers.two Derbies, Richmond Stakes, Maribyrnong Plate, Cham pion Race, Summer Cup, Tattorsall's Cup, and Anniversary Handicap. In addition to these there are, of course, many smaller races, and it is quite possible that such a list of victories for one season is unprecedented in the annals of Australian racing, I notice that Mr S. T. florsfall, wellknown to Aucklanders as the owner of King Quail, annexed the Selling Race at Moonee Valley (Melbourne) the other week. This was by tho aid of Navy Blue, a four-year-old daughter of Hornby, who won the Canterbury Derby in 1879. On being submitted to auction, Navy Blue was purchased by Mr E. Weekes for £65. Mr W. E. Dakin, who left for Now Zealand a little over a fortnight ago (writes "Augur'1) had returned with threoyearling colts, tlie property of Mr E. Mitcholson, a New Zealand sportsman, who has determined to try his fortune on the turf of Australia. The youngsters are all by Muakot, and one, Franter, is a eon of Pungawerowere, whom I saw win the Dunedin Cup. The other is from the imported mare Rosette, by Lord Lyon from Rouge Rose, by Thormanby. This colt is bred like a racehorse, for hie dam is by the Mre of the great English colt Minting from the dam of Bend Or, winner of the English Derby. Nothing better than this could be desired. It is an interesting fact, however, that up to the present time Musket's best sons, MartiniHenry, Trenton, Nordenfeldt, and Matchlock, have all been sons of Australian-bred mares. The other colt's dam is L'Orient, another important mare, by Knight of the Crescent from Egyptian, by Touchstone. On breeding grounds alone Buch youngters are a distinct acquisition to Australia, and I hope Mr Dakin may be successful in annexing some of our rich stakes with theso Maorilanders.
At a meeting of tho Committee of the ." Victorian Agricultural Society a quostion interesting to breeders arose. The members ' were asked to determine whether a horse, the produce of a mare which left England 9 in foal, but foaled in Australia, was im ported or colonial. It was decided that it 1 was Australian. Another moot point was 3 also discussed. This was, who should be s considered the breeder of a foal whoso dam I had been sold previous to its birth; and it ■ was determined that the owner of the mare at the time the foal was born should be re- ' garded as (he breeder. The members of J tho Committee took the common sense view ' of each case, and determined accordingly. t The owner of Old Joo, tho Liverpool • Grand National winner, gave tho wholo of 1 tho stakes, some £1,200, to Skelton, the , jockey, an even £1,000 to Mulcaster, and [ £20 to every man in the stable. Tho horse [ was originally disposed of by tho gentleman ; who had him for the small sum of £30. He r is remarkably well-bred, being by Barefoot, who was by Touchstone's grandson Lord i Clifden, from Stockings, by Stockwell from r Go Ahead by Melbourne; and Spot, the | dam of Old Joe, was got by Chevalier . d'lndnstrie, also a grandson of Touchstone, : from Truth, by the Libel, and thus it will ; be seen that the subject of these remarks is ; inbred to that celebrity Touchstone. 1 Mr R, Howett, the English racing man, who was recently on a visit to Australia, was, on his arrival at Nottingham, near to which town is his place, the Woodbird Manor Stud Farm, interviewed by ' a representative of the "Nottingham Guardian." Mr Howett's reminiscences and 1 opinions of what he saw on Australian racecourses are interesting as coming from one who has been connected with the turf from a boy. "Horse-racing," hesaid, "in Australia, is nothing like that seen on English racecourses. The prevailing idea is that a jockey's duty is to ride hard from start to finish. They race all the journey, and have, so to speak, no idea where the winning-post is." Mr Howett thoroughly agrees that Mr T. Hales is the best professional horseman in Australia, though lacking the finesse of modern English jockeys. Colonial steeplechase jockeys, however, are more to the visitor's liking, as " they ride with more skill, and in dashing style. Moreover, they have something to ride at." After expressing his astonishment at horses running " barefooted " on hard ground, Mr Howett entered into a comparison of the Australian racehorse with his English prototype. He considered Sheet Anchor a nice horse in Australia, but in England he would only rank as a second-class handicap animal, and would be beaten easily. The English racehorses were much better-looking, whilst the Australian was not so fine, nor had It the length and liberty of action which English sportsmen were accustomed to look for, As to trainers, he told many of them that they worked their horses far too severely. A week before a race trainers did three times more work than was allowed at English training quarters, and consequently horses often look jaded, light in the neck, andoverworked when brought out to run. Referring to Australian horses being sent to run in England, and vice versa, he expressed his belief that Australian horses would not be successful if run in England, because they would not be acclimatised ; but.on the other hand, he admitted that English horses in Australia would not by any means carry all before them. He thinks that if it were possible to put a thousand English horses into Australia, fit and well, to run in a month's time, there would not be 50 sound ones amongst the lot. They could not stand the hard ground. Australian horses, the writer added, had all got better legs and feet. Few English horses in Australia, except those imported in their infancy, had woii many races ; but the produce of English sires and mares bad been wonderfully successful. Mr Howett speaks in the most
laudatory terms of the various Australian stud farms. The foals and yearlings, he thought, as a ruie, better than those he found in England. The most extensive stud farm he ever saw in his life was Mr Andrew Town's. Referring to the last Melbourne Cup, he remarked that the scene just before the race was one of the grandest he ever witnessed in racing. Amongst so many P9ople, estimated from 110,000 to 140,000, he never saw a drunken or disorderly person.
During the last English racing season, the fabulous sum of £446,427 8s was won in races and matches, so it is no wonder that thoroughbreds fetch fancy prices in the old country when such an' enormous sum is annually devoted to prizes. Of the £446,427 8s the two-years-olds won £165,424 15s ; throo-yeura-oldf, £145,512 16s ; and four-years-olds and upward, £135,489 17s During the year 2031 different horses ran at 119 meetings held "under the rules of racing," and 810 of these won races. The numberof starters in all theraces was 10,342. The horses which won most money were : The Bard £9,183 9s, Bendigo £4,451 15s, Bird of Freedom £4,757, Gay Hermit£4,939, Kendal £4,053, Melton £11,435, Minting £7,396, Modwena £5,492, Paradox £7,352, Philosophy £6,514, Saraband £6,833.
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TURF GOSSIP., Auckland Star, Volume XVII, Issue 124, 29 May 1886
TURF GOSSIP. Auckland Star, Volume XVII, Issue 124, 29 May 1886
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