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SPORT AND PASTIME. The Turf.

[Br Lochiel.]

RACING FIXTURES. „-August.l4., -August .l4. 16, .and 18— C.J.C. Grand Rational. M_eeting. J With • the finish of the season racing matters in the colony are suffering from the "doldrums." Interest in the Grand National meeting has been stimulated by the closing of acceptances, and, as the" withdrawals in the principal events have been few, a fairly large proportion of'the early speculators are felicitating themselves on thei prospect of getting a"~rvin'fQr theh" money. Nineteen horses are,. still engaged in the Steeplechase, so that there is good reason to believe a large field will contest the prize. The withdrawal of Haydn, who made his first appearance at the winter meeting at Riccarton five years ago, did not come as a surprise, as .it had been freely reported that the Auckland veteran was an unlikely starter. Kiatere, Sol, Slow Tom, and Swimmer — a quartette which is likely to furnish the winner — still remain in. Other candidates who will possibly be "in the hunt" are Eurus, Irish, Waiwera, and Rongoa. The principal defection in the Hurdle Race, for whictf' twenty-two still figure in the list, has been Lxmoor, who was thought a lot of in some quarters. The other noteworthy withdrawals are Hautapu, Auratus, Black Kcvnard, and Wai. kato. Kremlin has been well backed locally, and it is coriiidently expected that he will give a good account of himself He will, however, have formidable opponents in Shrapnel, Cuiragno, and Hydrant. The Winter Cup possibilities . are on the perplexing side, despite the fact that there are several modorate3 in the list. Kremlin (if he starts), Waikato, Lyrist, Maui, and Rose Madder are quite capable of furnishing th% lending division at the end of the mile journey. Gold Crown, Maui, and Ailsa are regarded as certain representatives of the Porirua stable at • the Grand National meeting. , The Taldhurst team for the Australian Jockey Club's; spring meeting will consist of Porcelain, Isolt. Huascar, and Boniform. Business transacted on the Grand National double — the Steeplechase and Hurdles— during the vveek included the following :— SOO to 20 Kiatere and Kremlin, 500 to 15 Kiatere and "Shrapnel, 500 to 14 Sol and Shrapnel, 500 to 12' Eurus and Cuiragno, 500 to 12 Slow Tom and Shrapnel, 500 to 12 Slow Tom and Cuiragno, 500 to 10 Phaetontis and Shrapnel. Included amongst the young stock to be sent from the stud farm at Waikanae for sale in Wellington at Cup time is :» chestnnt yearling by Finland from La Gloria- half-sister to Charente, dam of Nonettier-a two-year-old by Conqueror from Spun Gold, a bay yearling by Conqueror — Success, a couple by The -S&iofr and Clovelty from Contend and •Sombre respectively,' a bay by Conqueror .jjrrAloreze; a full brother to the PoriruaIfrained' William 1., and a bay by St iHbans from Sirathspey. La Gloria one of the matrons at the farm, slipped .Jmn foals to Finland last week. Four 3& her companions, Ringlet (Castor— Succes3 (The .Oflicer— Content) Jfelhi (St. Andrew^-Delf t), were booked 3* go South thi£jw«Jk to visit St. Am££ose. Ringlet W-Bnlbul are in foal JJS Conqueror, and the other two to the English horse Kilcheran. Delhi <»s half-sister to the Sir Lancelot gelding Eawain. b 8 £rA l serious accident occurred at f lem-OTgton'-one- morning last week. Whilst JEerefcongi*. *nd-Gambler 11. were worksßg strongly together, Teretonga shied .■feSJtfefek, sand track into the gutter ■tkat <lmdes-;fchaf- track -from the tan, and in. struggling along he 'shattered one of his shoulders. Under directions from Teretonga's owner," the track ranger at once procured a , gun and shot the horse. Teretonga ' was by Sou'Wester. He was sent'-from New Zealand a few months ago, and was nominated for all the big races t>f- the winter and 6pring. Up- to the- time of his dsath he had not carried. Tsiljs in Australia., ' ■Considerable interest centred in flic/Appearance . of .Kremlin and 'Shrapnel' in their-firstr essay over the hurdles at Riccarton, as both horses have great reputations, and something excellent in -the way of jumping was expected when they set out for a schooling task on Saturday. However, their exhibition (says the correspondent of a Christchurch -paper) proved somewhat disappointing, for neither horse gave a finished display. Their trainer expressed his disappointment, and attributed it to the hurdles being much lower than those tb*yi'.,% re " ?*^ to 1 schooling over, and so we. may expect something better from them! at their. next attempt. * •Mr. Laing, Foxton,-has a cou-pla^-of "well-grown- Soults, who were three years Tola .this, week. Both (writes "Sir Geraint."') ai« v brown, without any' white markings. The gelding, from Aida ia a half-brother to Swordfish. He is- lighter built and will be in racing trim before the brother to Lass o' Gowrie, who is one of tho massive sort. The latter is being given plenty of time to mature, and if looks go for anything should keep np the reputation of the Soult family. The names of Glenlora Park and Glen Gowrie have been claimed for them. They aje in charge of Jt 'Middleton, who comes from the South Island. Mr. Laing informed " Geraint " that Lass o' Gowrie was in foal to Advance. According to a Sydney paper, the withdrawal of Sweet Nell from the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups lends colour to to the report that that mare has done racing. Though she failed when fancied by her connectione, Sweet Nell won V.R.C. Encourage Stakes, Nursery Handicap, Flemington Stakiss, Sire's Produce Sfcttes, and'S.A.J.C. South Australian Stakes in her first season, , and thus gave great promise. Her form at three-year-old was. very consistent, for such races as Caulfield Guineas, Caulfleld Cup, V.H.C. Oaks, and A. J.C. Autumn Stakes, were captured, and Sweet Nell ran second in the A.J.C. and V.R.C. Derbies, and Grantham Stakes, and third in the V..R.C. St. Leger and Sydney Cup. Subsequently she appropriated A.J.C. Wycombe Stakes, and C. B. Fisher Plate, which completed her winning record. Pretty Polly, out of twenty-four starts during her racing- career to date, has won twenty-two races, of the value of £37,300. As a two-year-old and a four-year-old she was never defeated, winning nine and four races respectively. As a three-year-old she won seven times out of eight starts, and this year, as a five-year-old, she has won twice out of three starts. >Mr. S. Green, the owner of Gladsome, has completed the purchase of a property in the Warrnambool district, which he intends to convert into a stud farm. Mr. J. Crozier, formerly of South Australia, will act as manager of the establishment. •It is 'Mr. Green's intention to buy an English stallion, and included amongst the mares who will be located at Warrnambool are Gladsome, Independence, Air 'Motor, Bright Beauty, and two fillies by Simmer, which he bouirht in Sydney in April last. So much ha* been said and written about Spearmint's Grand Prix victory that the eubject has become almost stale, tut in view of' the divers opinions which have been expressed as to the precise merit of Major Loder's colt as. »■ race-

horse, it may not be uninteresting to quote- the ideas of one of the leading trainers "in Francs, who writes to an English writer as follows :— " I do 1 not think the French three •year-olds are good, in fact, far below the average of many years. past. They are for the most part all on top of one another, so to speak. Prestige stands' out by himself, and had he run in the Grand Prix I think h© would have won by many lengths. Spearmint, so far as I could see, was all out, and had to be whipped to win his race. Should Pretty Polly come over to meet Prestige on the 15th July in the Prix dv President de la Republiquc, it will be possible to obtain a moro definite line as regards the three-year-olds. Personally I have always found old mares, say between four years and five years, most unreliable for trial gallops at home, though they invariably give their true form in public. No doubt Spearmint is a fairly useful colt, but he is not so eood as his alleged trial with Pretty Polly makes him out to be." It has transpired that the stories of the Derby winner's wonderful trial with the mare were chimerical, and it has been advanced with some show of reason that had he been trained in any other stable, where there was nothing of Pretty Polly's transcendent ability to take him along and reveal his true capacity, he might never have been heard of as a classic winner. This is, of course, pure conjecture, and for the moment it is sufficiently clear that Spearmint has indubitably shown himself to be not only the best'colt of his year, but perhaps the most remarkable bargain of ail time. A great deal of interesting matter could be written round the Ascot Gold Cup, which k said to have been originated by the Duke of Cumberland, the hero of Culloden, who' so far back as 1772 instituted a cup to be raced for by fire-year-olds here over a four-mile course. In 1807 it was raised to the dignity of the Gold Cup, and for a very long period it has been highly esteemed by owners, not only on accpunt of its intrinsic value, but because it is one of the unwritten laws of the English Turf that no horse has indubitably set the seal on his fame until he has secured this race. Tho victories of marei, have been singularly few and far between, and in a period of half a century only three members of the gentler sex have won it, riz., Brig-antine, Apology, and La. Fleche. That Pretty Polly would ha-ve secured the coveted prize twelve months ago had she been able to run has always been accepted as certain, though doubtless th« rietv may be modified after this year's sensational race, when (according to late. English papers to hand by this week's mail) tho Cup furnished one of those remarkable surprises which have from time to timo distinguished it. When Throwaway won two years ago people were incredulpus, and it was considered on all hands that the victory of Mr. Alexander's horse was a fluke. What will be thought after the downfall of Major Loder's redoubtable maro this year it is impossible to say. Everybody seemed (says one writer) to be too atupified to realise that a catastrophe nad somehow occurred. This expression is permissible where Pretty Polly is concerned, for she had never previously been beaten in England, having achieved s. triumphant and unbroken, series of successes extending over three seasons. Almost universal regret was expressed that she 'should at last, have received a check in the zenith of her career. Odds were, of course, "freely laid on her, though many supported Bachelor'a Button (the winner) on account of the extended prices. The race was run' at a tremen'dona pace, St. Denis settling down well clear of Cicero and Achilles, witli Bachelor's Button waiting behind Pretty Polly. A little further on St. Denis was five or six lengths in front of Cicero and Achilles, of whom Lord Rosebery's horse became whipper-in immediately they had turned on to the old course. Soon afterwards Achilles deprived St. Denis of the lead, and was followed into the straight by Bachelors Button and Pretty Polly. A quarter of a mile from home Achilles was done with, and excitement reached a high point as the favourite made her effort to overhaul Bachelor's Button. For a few strides it looked as though sue would win easily, and then Dillon has suddenly to take up his whip. It was at once seen that the mare was in difficulties, and with Bachelor's Button struggling on in the most dogged style he won by a length. People seemed too disappointed at the result to make any demonstration, but to give honcmr whero honour ia due, Bachelor's Button has now (says the writer above quoted) unquestionably shown himself to be about tho best stayer in training, and well worthy to rank with many of the famous Cup horses of ths past. It is no exaggeration to say that alt sporting America mourna the death of Mr. James Keene's Sysonby, America's great thoroughbred, which died recently at Long Island, in the presence of his owner, who was much attached to the animal. According to files to hand by this week's mail, Sysonby had been suffering constantly during the hist two months, and the poor animal was in great agony for hours before he passed away. He died from the worst form of septic poisoning. The veterinary 6urgeons found that Sy«onby's lung 3 and kidneys were twice as large as those of an ordinary racehorse, and this explains tha stamina and conrage that marked his running. The first announcement that Sysonby was ill, and that his racing career was at an end, was made on 21st April, and it waa then stated that the great racer would be withdrawn from all the rich stakes in which he was entered. When the horse was first taken ill skin disease, only was suspected, but it was later ascertained that Sysonby was suffering from an incurable blood disease, that had been communicated to the unfortunate beast by an attendant. The horse had a slight abrasion on the side of the mouth, and the attendant, in rubbing the animal's mouth with a sponge, had introduced thb poison into the wound. This was not discovered until the disease had secured so strong a hold that it was impossible to check it. Sysonby was a bay colt, four years old, by Melton — Optime, by Ormc, and was imported from England with his >dam while still unborn. He was foaled at the Cattleton stud in 1902, and attracted the immediate attention of his owner and trainer by his fine proportions and general marks of thoroughbred quality. The horse had a career of but two years, find started fifteen times, winning fourteen races, and coming in third once. Hia winnings amounted to £35,630. Mr. Keene refused an offer of £30,000 tor the racer, which, was insured for £20,000. As a two-year-old Sysonby made his first start on 14th July, 1904, and won a five and one-half furlong event for maidens by ten lengths, pulled up. Aa a three-yeai-old he won every time he started, and captured otakes with the greatest ease. Sysonby's only defeit was in the Futurity Stakes, at Sheepshead' Bay, on 27th.August, 1904) when Artful and Tradition finished in front ot him. The last race run by Syeonby was the Annual CJiampion Stakes, at Sheepshead Bay, two miles and a quarter, in which he beat Oweau and Broomstick, she only other starters. . Wher- the dam of Sysonby was put up at a sale at Sheepshead Bay ■ Mr. Keene and Mr. James B. Haggin had a spirited bidding match for the mare; but Mr. Haggin stopped when he had reached tho £1200 r.iark, and Mr. Keene won the prize witb a bid of £1300. For a long time after the form of Sysonby became known to his owner and trainer it was kept quiet, but something invariably happened to frustrate the plans, and instead of going in at 10 to 1, as desired, Sysonby'B performances in the preliminary work, which became known to the "clockera," sent him to the post a 2 to 1 favourite.

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Permanent link to this item

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Bibliographic details

SPORT AND PASTIME. The Turf., Evening Post, Volume LXXII, Issue 30, 4 August 1906

Word Count
2,560

SPORT AND PASTIME. The Turf. Evening Post, Volume LXXII, Issue 30, 4 August 1906

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