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NOTES AND COMMENTS

(By Sir Bedivere.)

The new totalisator house at Marton, which was used for the first time this week, is a building of amply sufficient proportions, and, generally speaking, the arrangements in connection therewith were satisfactory. Two improvements might, however, well be effected. In the first place, the machine itself is badly situated, for its position causes a congestion of the public immediately in front of the races leading to the ticketselling windows. In order to avoid this and at the same time to allow of the machine, as at present, being plainly visible to patrons of both the inside and outside enclosures, the club might consider the advisableness of extending that portion of the building in which the machine is placed Bft or 10ft in front of the totalisator house proper. It would then be necessary for those who wished to note the fluctuations of the market to stand further back. The other suggestion I havo to make is that each ticketseller should be provided with a complete set of tickets. "When two sellers have to remove tickets from the same set their hands are constantly getting in one another's way, and they are thus .unable to work with the desired expedition. The officials of the Marton Racing Club are already talking of building a new grandstand, for they fully recognise that the present structure is both inconvenient and far too small. The proposal is to erect a much more commodious building, to be faced with concrete steps on terraces, at a higher "elevation than the present one. A big improvement could also be effected in connection with the stewards' stand. Apart from the structure being far too small, its front is parallel with the straight of the racing track, tho consequence being that one's left-hand neighbour" is ( continuously obscuring one's line of vision. All theso details cannot, of course, be attended to at once, but the club is going ahead by leaps and bounds, and it may be taken for granted that in the near future its appointments will be quite in keeping with the times. Mr. T. Cameron was asked last week as to how the Taratahi-Carterton Racing Club had <been able to induce him ' to agree again to fill his old position at the starting barrier, tn reply he said that tin's was the first he had heard of his reappointment and that he did not in any case intend to accept the same. He had, as he had announced last season, definitely determined to retire from the ranks of professional starters. The Sk Leger will be decided on the Town Moor at Doncaster on Wednesday next, and unless Lomond, who went amiss prior to the Derby, should be himself again (which is improbable), we may make a shrewd' guesa that Jaegar will start favourite. Tagalie will have another opportunity to redeem her character, and if ~ the going should happen to be fast it will be conclusively determined whether those who have made excuses for her recent defeats on account of her alleged inability to act other than on the ground, were talking wisely. The King's colt Pintadean is said to have improved since he ran fourth in the Derby, and may therefore prove dangerous, but the American representative Sweeper H. evidently cannot stay, and may, therefore, safely be discarded. Sysonby, Preferment, Prince Beppo, Cutmint, Cylgad, and Hall Cross are among the other three-year-olds engaged. The 1 race is run on a course shaped similarly to most of our own, but of about a mile and seven furlonga in circumference. It thua starts from a point on the bottom turn about a furlong distant from the winning post. Photographs of the start, the winner returning to scale, and in the weighing enclosure may usually be purchased in Doncaster on the afternoon of the race. In having arranged to give away £32,800 in stakes during the present season, tho Canterbury Jockey Club has seen the Auckland Club's rise and gone one better. The sum referred to represents an average endowment per race of £410, and as many important special weight and w.f.a. events have had their values increased, breeders of high-class stock are to receive greater encouragement than ever. This is as it should be. It ie yearly becoming increasingly difficult to purchase Well-bred sires and mares in England, and without a correspondingly greater inducement at this end, breeders would cease to import them. The result would inevitably b© that the standard of our horseflesh would gradually deteriorate. What a pity, apropos of the above paragraph, that those who are continually advocating the further reduction of metropolitan racing in favour of country sport do not recognise the paramount importance of frequently replenishing our studs with the best blood obtainable in England. The member for Taumarunui (Mr. C. K. Wilson) is, if report be true, one of those, for it is said that, in view of the unlikelihood of Mr. George Hunter's Bill being brought on for discussion this session, he has been seeking support for a private measure of his Own to bring about a, redistribution of permits. Now this is precisely what everyone with insight into the affairs of the lurf is most desirous of avoiding. It is not a question of town versus country, nor is it necessary at this juncture to defend the preponderance of racing in the most thickly populated centres by submitting thaf the modern practice is after all only in accordance with democratic principles— the greatest good to the greatest number. There is no desire amongst sportsmen, whether resident m cities ,or elsewhere, to deprive any isolated district of its annual race meeting. They differ from Mr. Wilson, however, in so much that ,tnev are able to foresee, as Mr. Wilson an j. * nen ds apparently are not, the dire consequences that would follow upon a greatly wider distribution of such permits as are available. It is only the big .clubs that are in a position to offer big stakes in- connection with classic events; .it is only on account of these well-endowed classic events that buyers are induced* to give big prices for yearlings, and it" is only because wellbred and well-grown. yearlings command substantial figures that studmaaters are willing, at great cost,' to import highclass sires and dams in order to produce them. Hence the immediate effect o£ a further curtailment of the dates allotted to big racing institutions would be the deterioration of the standard of our ■ racehorses ' and of' the sport in which they are the principals. These racehorjses of a diminshed. standard of excellence would, in due course, become the sires and dams of a still poorer class of animal, for it has long been established that, outside the British Isles, the thoroughbred quickly deteriorates unless his blood is frequently replenished with the aid of imported stock — from which in turn the farmer would have to select sires to mats .with his half or coarser

bred mares. Mr. Wilson's proposed measuie would thus have an evil effect upon every class of light horse in this country, and instead of again being in a position, if necessary, to supply eight or ten thousand satisfactory remounts for war purposes, we should find ourselves possessed of a host of underbred, 111-shapen, and unsound crocks which would die off like flies if ever called upon to undertake a task for which they were totally unfitted. Counterfeit. Autumnus, and Brown Owl are again daily attendants at the tracks. Counterfeit, says the Riccarton correspondent of the Canterbury Times, has been getting through useful pacing without showing any ill effects, and there may stfll be hope that the brilliant daughter of Treadmill will train on. Autumnus has been showing slight symptoms of lameness, but since Thursday he 'appears to be improving. Yesterday he moved veTy freely in his work, and walked out apparently sound after being rubbed down. It would appear as though there were some chance of Autumnus being seen .out at the Wanganui and Hawkes Bay Spring fiitures after all. ' Mr. E. J. Watt has, says "Martindale," secured the services of W. M'Lachlan as first jockey for the season, during which, with ordinary luck in training, Mr. Watt will be strongly represented at the big metropolitan meetings here and in Melbourne. Next week hie horses Midnight Sun, Theodore, Royal Scotch, and Kildonan will join those others he owns in training in Sydney and Melbourne. Among those in New Zealand is the two-year-old named Jason, said to be a particularly smart customer; but Mr. Watt is leaving him behind in favour of Athenic, a handsome Traquair colt who is being trained at Randwick by Harry Rayner, with a couple of other youngsters^ — a fine- filly by Prudent King ,and a very promising colt by Charlemagne 11. j Some well fancied horses have dropped, ! out of the New Zealand Cup. The following twenty-two in all have been scratched:— Miscount, Cheddar, The RoVer, Shuja, Sea Queen, John, Birkline, Alpheus, Royal Arms, Formulate, Gnome, Bon Reve, Carolus, Bellah, Julian, Mount Victoria, Grandee, Aurana, Gipsy. Bill, Oakum, Gay Soult, Neriene.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/EP19120907.2.172

Bibliographic details

Evening Post, Evening Post, Volume LXXXIV, Issue 60, 7 September 1912

Word Count
1,516

NOTES AND COMMENTS Evening Post, Volume LXXXIV, Issue 60, 7 September 1912

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