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TALK OF THE DAY.

*#* Don't forget bhe Trotbing meeting at Carisbrook to-morrow (Friday). There are capital acceptances, and if the weather is fine bhe sport will be very enjoyable.

* # * The Melbourne mail is not in time for this Week's issue, consequently we are withoub our Melbourne correspondent's latest advice as to the V.11.C. meeting to commence on Saturday. His latest letter gave Wild Rose as a good thing for the Newmarket Handicap, and I shall not attempt to improve on that as a tip, but I have a strong belief that Tirailleur will run a good horse in the Australian Cup.

*y* This Friday's sales of blood stock in Dunedin are sure to attract attention. Wright, Stephenson, and Co. are putting up Mr Firming's yearling brother to Gipsy King, Mr Brown's yearling by Sir Garnet — lona, Mr Rutherford's stallion Artillery, Mr M'Gregor's Breadalbane, and Mr O'Donnell's Knockhaspic, and four lots on account of Mr M. Allan — viz., the stallions Captain Webster and Young Diomedes and two trotters. And at 11 o'clock the Mutual Agency Company will offer at the racing stables at St. Clair five high-class yearlings bred at Warringbon, and also the Hon. G. M 'Lean's horses in training. It is to be very sincerely hoped that this announcement does not mean that the honoured president of the Duuedin Jockey Club meditates giving up racing.

*** The Hon. G. M 'Lean's yearlings above referred to were brought into town on Tuesday and temporarily lodged at Power's stables, where many sporting men were afforded the opportunity of inspecting them. The filly out qf Lady Emma is a real beauty. She has size and very high quality to recommend her, and already looks like a racer. The Dione colt has the brand of St. Clair indelibly fixed on him— being a youngster of great substance and as nice a colt as one could wish to see ; and the other St. Clair, the colt out of Lady Gertrude, is one that it is hard to find a fault with. Some folk profess to see in him a resemblance to Bpulanger as that horse was at the same age. The other two to be submitted are also worthy of their pedigree. I regret that lack of time prevents mo describing them at length. They are worthy of the closest inspection, and those who attend the sale will agree with me that a better lob of yearlings has not been seen in Dunedin. At the same time there will be offered a yearling filly by Rubezahl out of Hippona. This youngster, the property of Mr J. Dobbin, is also well worth attention. *t* At Saturday's meeting of the D.J.C.'s

Committee it was decided to grant the application of Mr J. R. Mackenzie, jun., that his disqualification be removed. It is so long ago as July 31, 1886— h0w time flies !— that the trouble arose The meeting was a special one hold at the Forbury on the very last day of the season. The openiug event of the day was a hurdle handicap of 25sovs, a mile and a-half, for which there started Andy, 9.10, Mayboy 9.10, Fishhook' 9.7, Peter Flat 8.12, and Warcpa 8.10. Mayboy and Peter Flat were the favourites. Peter, ridden by Boyle, fell at the first hurdle and gave his rider a shaking. Andy subsequently ran off, and then Fishhook and Mayboy led till half a mile from home, where sharp brought the outsider along, and he won with the greatest of ease, paying dividends of L 3 15s 6d and L 4 17s. Warepa showed such skill in jumping and such speed in galloping that everybody at one asked what the deuce he could be. He was evidently no new chum. Inquiries were made, with thrs result that the committee undertook a searching investigation, and in the first week of the succeeding September the conclusion was arrived at that Warepa was Problem, and the horse was very properly disqualified for ever. It was for his connection with the affair as nominator of the horse that Mr Mackenzie came under the ban. He has now undergone what we may regard as an adequate punishment — more than five years and a-half— and I think the committee arc not making a mistake in removing the disqualification. The moral effect of the sentence is quite as great as it would be if the committee had proved implacable. * # * There was excellent racing at Egmont last week. The Hurdle Race on the first day was taken by Rough, who they say 19 a fairish kind of horse, but no wonder. Viola was leading at less than half the distance when she jumped over the fence of the course and stopped. Next day Rough was pub up a stone and Viola was kept at the same weight as on the first day, which it may bo suggested was harcl/ up to Mr Henry's form in handicapping, and the mare won, as might have been expected. Cingalee, who paid the thumping dividend of L 74 8s in one of the hack hurdle races, is said to be a daughter of the Anteros horse, The Governor, who ran third to Sir Modred and On Dit in the Dunedin Cup. St. Katherine's penalty in the Sapling Stakes was no trouble to her. She must have had at least a stone in hand, as on the second day she conceded 141b to Variety, who met her on level terms in the (Sapling Stakes, and the latter could only gain third place. We may conclude that this St. Katherine is a capital advertisement for Stonyhurst, and there is every prospect of her developing into a good three-year-old. The Egmont Handicap is said to have been one of the best two-mile races ever seen in the colony, in that no less than six horses participated in the finish, and the time is the fastest yet made on the course. Whisper has at last proved that she can gallop two miles, but it must be remembered that she had a very moderate weight considering the lack of stayers among her opponents, and therefore, while pleased to see Mr Hunter win, I do not know that one can say that his mare has added very greatly to her reputation. It was a good race that she ran, but I fancy we could find m her lengthy career at least as good a one without much trouble. Mr Henry's handicapphig and Mr Powell's starting at this meeting were ou the whole remarkably praiseworthy, and I am pleased to hear that the public expressed their opinions in that direction. Down south we arc apt to forget the best work of our officials, and think only of their worst.

*** At this time last year I gave a condensed history of the Dunedin Cup meetings to date, referring to leading incidents in connection with the racing in general. Those for whom such notices are written will not ask me to go over the same ground this year, but they and others may be pleased to scan a review of the contests for the Dunedin Cup, which was first run when many who are now bearded men were mere infants. The first race of the series was, as everyone knows, rim in 1874, in March, when Lurline won. The question that backers had to fa.cc that year was as to which of the four in Redwood's all-powerful stable would be the selected one. There was Lurline at 9.9, Calumny (entered as Mr Nosworthy's) nt 8.12, Parawhenua (Mr Watt's) at 7.6, and Spritsail at 6.5. All these had accepted, and though it was generally supposed that Lurline would be the ultimate choice, there was sufficient uncertainty on the subject to make backers a little anxious. However, at 10 a.m. on race day both Calumny and Spritsail were withdrawn, and then Lurline was rushed to such an extent that she started at 5 to 4 on, for few placed any faith in Parawhenua. The trouble beforehand had been as to whether it would be Lurline or Calumny. Templeton 6.12 was second favourite at the start at 4to 1. When the flag fell after two false starts Templeton jumped away first, and he led past the stand with Earl of Lynne second and Lurliue third. They compassed the whole round in that order, but entering the last round Earl of Lynne caved in. Lurline then went on in second place until the turn into the straight, where Mason took her up and challenged Templeton. A splendid race resulted for a short distance, but the mare had most left in her, and won by two lengths and a-half ; Atlas (ridden by Stuart Waddell) a good third, and Parawhenua fourth. The latter pulled up lame.

*#* In 1875 Mr Redwood's Ngaro was the favourite, and many inclined to the chances of Traitor, who was said by a sporting writer of the day to bo a roarer, and Templeton, then a four-year-old, was admitted to be in such splendid condition that he was sure to be dangerous, even though 8.12 was a very stiff burden for him. At the start the betting settled down to 3 to 1 Ngaro, 4- to 1 Templeton and Traitor. Mr Delamain declared to win with Templeton in preference to Hercules. From a good start the previous year's impostor, Earl of Lynne 6.12, was the first to move, and he led Ngaro and Hercules past the stand. Half a mile further on Ngaro had usurped the lead, Hercules lying second to her. They led into the straight, but Wattie took Templeton along smartly at that stage, and was at the head of affairs a mile from home, just in front of Right Bower and Hercules, the favourite having suddenly dropped out. Half a mile from home Right Bower got pretty well on terms with Templeton, and Atlas was third. Castaway slipped into the ditch just as he commenced to make his run. At the last bend there was a brief gtruggle between the leaders, but Templeton soon conquered his opponent and was landed a winner from Right Bower by four lengths. Right Bower was ridden by T. Cotton, and Bob Ray was up on Traitor, who finished third. Atlas was fourth, and then followed Hercules and Earl of Lynne, the favourite being absolutely last.

*** M f Delamain was also successful in 1876, his three-yeur-old Pungawerewere 7.0, ridden by Rowland, getting home first in a big field of fairly-good quality. She had been fancied a bit sometime before, but was imagined to be under a cloud. The betting at the pqs.t was 3 to 1 Fishhook 7.5, 5 to 1 Tattler 7.3, and 8 to 1 King Philip 8,0, Ten to 1 could be had about anything else. Mr Redwood started Guy Fawkes and Amohia. At the start the lead was taken bp Merry Monarch 6.6, with Amohia

and Punga close up. Merry Monarch kept in front all the way round, but at the entrance to the straight Punga had dispossessed Amohia of second place, and Guy Fawkes was looking dangerous. Half a mile from home Punga had disposed of Merry Monarch, and King Philip was second, with Right Bower 7.3 coming up fast. At the home turn the order was Punga first, Right Bower second, and Guy Fawkes third, and then ensued a bit of a struggle, bub Punga soon sebtled tho pretensions of the opposition and won easily by a length from Right Bower, King Philip just beating Guy Fawkes for third place.

*#* In 1877 there was first the rush on to Maroro 7 1, another of Mr Redwood's lot, who, however, eventually started at an outside price, the owner declaring to win with Puriri 7.1, and another incident of note was that Right Bower pub his shouldpr oub in the race at a stage when he was beginning to look dangerous. The betting at the posb was 3 to 1 agst Templeton 9.3, 6 to 1 King Philip 7.7 and Fishhook 7.12. The latter was riddeu by Derrett. Danebury 7.11 was the first to make the running, bub after going half a mile Hippocampus 7.1 (ridden by Tommy Allen) was showing the way, with Danebury second and Fishhook third. Coming to tke straighb Fishhook passed Danebnry and ran up alongside of Hippocampus. It was at the end of the first mile that Right Bower meb with his mishap. Half a mile from home Fishhook and Hippo still led, with Templeton making a vain effort to overhaul them. Nearing the last turn Fallacy put on a splendid spurt, bub she fell away again a furlong from home, and Fishhook having the best of Hippo in the straight was landed a winner by two lengths, with Fallacy a fair third, and Templeton fourth. This Fishhook had always been regarded previously as a non-stayer. Dead Heat, sire of several recent winners, was in that field.

*** In 1878 the date of the meeting was brought forward to the last clay of February, for the sake of getting better weather. Hippocampus 8.3 was the great pot beforehand, but a couple of days or so before the race Tcmpletou 9.3 came with a rattle that evidently foreshadowed business, and the latter started most in demand at 2 to 1, being ridden by his then owner, Bob Kay. The stable also started Titania 7.3, but she was at 12 to 1. Templeton and Chancellor were first away, but Templeton being steadied Mr Goodman's horse went on in front with Titania second. The latter, evidently bent on forcing the pace, was loading at a mile from homo, with Chancellor, Templeton, and Hippocampus following. Half a mile from home Titania was still in front, bub Templeton was let out immediately afterwards and took the lead, closely followed by his stable companion, Ariel, and Longlands. This order was preserved all the way home, Templeton winning by three-quarters of a length from Titania, with Ariel third. Longlands was fourth, Chancellor fifth, Hippocampus sixth, then Unknown, Bribery, and Cloth of Gold. It was on the following clay that Templeton won the D.J.C. Handicap with 10.0 up. *** There was a great amount of betting in 1879, as may be judged by the following i sentence in the Daily Times of the 27th February: — "Early last evening Titania was backed for a good deal of money and she soon displaced her stable companion, Templeton, who receded to 7to 1 without takers. Later on Sinking Fund came with a rush, and in the space of a few minutes jumped from 100 to 8 to as short a price as 5 to 1, he being backed to win several thousands ? " Where should we'*look for one thousand to-day P At the last Mr Ray declared to win with Templeton 9.9, and the old horso started first favourite. When the flag fell Sinking Fund 6.10 (who ran in bandages) at once went into the lead, and he kept it all the way round, entering the final mile with a length's advantage of Chancellor, with Camballo aud Nemo almost together behind the leaders, and Templeton last. At half a milo further on, however, the old horse had run through his horses, and passed all but Sinking Fund. Mata 7.8 now also came with a rush, and speedily disposed of all but Ray's pair. Ab the home turn Mata had beaten Templeton, and then Sinking Fund went at Mata. A splendid race ensued, ending in a dead heat, Templeton being third and Nemo, Camballo, and Fishhook following in that order. As everybody knows, the dead heat was afterwards run off, and Mata won by a neck. Clifford rode Mata and Webster was up on Sinking Fund. *#* The seventh Cup was Mata's second. Ho and Titania, the latter being weighted at 7.4 and Mata at 8.9, were spotted as the good things of the handicap directly the weights appeared, and they maintained their positions to the fall of the flag, though at the last moment they were not in equal demand, Titania having advanced to even money, while Mata was quoted ab 3 to 1 and paid 5 to 1 on the totalisator. There was a capital start. Libeller 6.5 made the running for six furlongs and was then headed by Titania, who drew away as they entered on the last mile. Ab the back of the course the field momentarily closed up with the exception of Longlands 7.12, but before reaching the distance post five of the 10 were done with, and the final struggle was left to Titania, Mata, Betrayer, Foul Play, and Grip. Titania led into the straight, but Mata gradually drew up on the outside, and Derrett at the same moment calling on Foul Play, this horse joined issue, and an exciting race ended in Mata getting home by a head. Wattie rode the favourite to the best advantage, and she was, 1 think, fairly beaten, though the excuse was afterwards made that she had been made nervous by a sudden blast of the band just as she was brought on to the course. The public were by no means pleased at the result. They had at the finish gone Nap on Titania, ifcbeing mostly stable money that was on Mata, and the crowd felt so bad that there was not a cheer when the winner was declared weight.

* # * Sir Modred, the winner in 1831, was the first three-year-old to secure honours in this race. He met a particularly poor field and started at level money, though one of the totalisators on the ground paid a dividend at the rate of 3to 2. He was leniently handicapped, for a Derby winner, at 7.10, and the horses that at their best might have made him race had gone out. I refer to such cattle as Le Loup, Virginia Water, and Grip, whose owners thought the weights too heavy on these horses. Sinking Fund had died, and Titania gave birth to a foal after the entries were made. Sir Modred had a narrow escape from serious injury a week or two before the race, having fallen over a dog while exercising on the course, but he was not hurt, and on the day ho completely paralysed the betting. When Mr Dodsou lowered the flag Lady Emma (then a three-year-old) rushed to the front and led On' Dit aud Sylvanus past the stand, with Sir Modred fourth. This order was preserved the wholo way round, the only incident being that at the bottom turn On Dit momentarily closed on Lady Emma. No change was made till nearing the straight for the last time. At that point On Dit disposed of Lady Emma. She had no sooner done this than Sir Modred was given his head for the first time. H[e shot pasl'Sylvanus and L.m.ma as though they had been standing still ; challenged and boat On Dit in the space of 100 yd s; and ran home the easiest of winners by a length. The Governor boat Emma on the post for third place, Sylvanua was fifth, and.

Fishhook and Volunteer, who had been last all the way, walked in. It was the poorest Cup race ever seen on the course.

*** For the 1882 Cup the top weight of 9.8 was clapped on to Mata, this being due to his having won the V.R.C. Handicap with 8.7, but Mr J. Stepheuson, the horse's then owner, scratched him as soon as the weights appeared. I remember with particular distinctness the race that year, oue reason being that in the review of the handicap which I wrote for the paper I was then employed on I selected Lady Emma and Chancellor as the best treated horses at the weights, and they finished first and third, while I included Libeller (who ran into second place) among the dangerous members ; and then at the last moment I was choked off the mare after seeing her pull up apparently in distress after a training gallop, four days before the meeting. The weights in those days were issued in November, but there was very little betting in that year till the approach of the deciding day, and then there was a rush for the mysterious Mataku and Mr Walters' pony Libeller, who started equal favourites at 2 to 1 each. The Dauphin 7.11 and Mataku 7.9 (the latter ridden by Derrett) made the running for a mile and a distance, when Mataku shut up, leaving The Dauphin to go on in front with King Quail at his heels. The Dauphin in turn had had enough of it at half a mile from home. Lady Emma shot past them all like a flash of lightning and won hands down by three lengths from Libeller, while Chancellor was a good third, and Adamant, Poet, and King Quail close up. The time was the fastest on record. Lady Emma ran in the nomination of Sir Hercules Robinson, but it was understood that she had then become the sole property of the Hon. G. M'Lean, whose success provoked loud and hearty cheering. *** Sir Modred with' 9.6 was top weight in the handicap for the Cup of 1883, and he, Vanguard 7.10, and Somnus 7.9 were the first favourites at 100 to 12 each in the earliest betting list I can find, while Lady Emma was also backed at 100 to 10. Cheviot likewise came into demand, but the public were subsequently tempted by Bundoora's win in the Chrisfcchurch Cup to select him as the best thing in the race, and at the time he went amiss, three or four days before the race, he was the most marketable goods at 2to 1. Thefavourito at the post was Welcome Jack. The startling changes that had taken place in the betting market had a sequel in a sensational race, as we all remember. Adamant led past the stand in front of Welcome Jack, Sir Garnet, and The Jilt, but rounding to the right White took Jilt to the front, and she led at a great pace till the horses had gone a mile and a-half. When she was done with Adamant was left in the lead, and there he kept. Sharp, then quite a little boy, had received orders to let nothing patss him at any stage of the race if he could help it ; and, though weakened by a dose of physic he had surreptitiously taken, and as sick as a dog, he carried out his orders and stuck to his work with the pluck of a bulldog, with the result that the six-year-old son of Traducer and Ada got home by three-quarters of a length from Salvage, with King Quail a fair third, The Poet fourth, and Lady Emma fifth. The victory, though by ('some called a fluke, was nothing of the sort. On the day the race was run Adamant was the fastest horse at the weights, and if the race had been run over again later on in the day Adamant would have started first favourite. His success was due to Cotton's training and Sharp's riding, and the only suspicion of luck he had was that King Quail was interfered with, which I do not think affected the result. That was Sharp's first ride of any importance. To-day he is recognised as one of the best race-riders in the colony.

*** The Cup of 1884- also furnished a sensation. Sou-wester had openly run a trial for it which seemed to place the race at his mercy. I never liked the horse very much, bub at 6.10 he was starting with apparently a stone to spare, and there is not the least doubt that he would have won but for his misf ox-tune. His starting price was 2 to 1, while Nonsense 8.6, with whom the Hon. W. Robinson had elected to win in prefcrenceXto Vanguard 8.8, was next in the quotations at 5 to 2, and 6 to 1 Avas obtainable about Lady Emma 8.5, who proved to be the winner, and Tasman 9.5, then a five-year-old, and ridden by Derrett. Lady Emma was smartest away, but being steadied as they passed the stand the lead was taken by Digby Grand 6.7, Hazard 6.2, and July 7.4. The last-named was ridden by White, while Maurice O'Connor, who might have turned out a good horseman, was on Hazard. At the back of the course Sou-wester slipped into the ditch, and lost a lot o£ ground, oue chronicler estimating this as 150 yds. It was hardly so much as that, but still there Was a big lot of ground lost. But he went after his field with such determination that on reaching the stand, a mile from home, he was among his horses, of whom the leaders were Nonsense and Vanguard, this pair seemingly going well within themselves. At the old Leger post Lady Emma went past Hazard, who had been lying third, and also got Nonsense in difficulties, and ,then the mare tackled Vanguard, and this pair raced along the back stretch three lengths clear of everything else till they came to the half-mile post. Here Vanguard compounded, and a quarter of a mile further on there was nothing in it but Lady Emma, with July making an unexpected effort to collar her. He and Sou-wester made further rushes in the straight, but they could not catch the mare, who ran hoftfe an easy winner by a length and a-half from July, with Sou-wester six lengths away third, and Hazard, Hippodamia, Poet, and Nonsense following in order. The time was two seconds slower than Adamant's the year before.

*#* Vanguard was the hero of the 1885 race, and a very easy task he had. They say that the Hon. W. Robinson had such faith in Derrett's ability to get the favourite home that he gave no orders, merely reminding the jockey that he must win. The compliment to Derrett's judgment was not misplaced, as he performed his task with tho greatest skill. The story of the race may be told in a few words. Minerva was the first to move, and as they ran past the stand after going a distance she was a length in front of July, the great Trenton, whose ability was at that time not fully discovered, lying last. Vanguard was here steadied, and as they stretched round to the back of the course he brought up the rear. At a mile from home Minerva was still leading, with Captain Webster, going great guns, second, Vanguard still last. A furlong further and Vanguard was commencing to cut down his opponents, of whom Captain Webster was the first to succumb. Half a mile from home Minerva was just in front of Poet, and Vanguard seventh out of 10 starters, but now galloping. Nearing the quar ber-mile post Trenton had settled Minerva, and then Vanguard also ran past the mare. Once in the straight Vanguard tackled Trenton, and after the semblance of a struggle, for Trenton was not lit, he caved in, leaving Vanguard to run home an easy winner by over a length. Minerva was a fair third, Adamant fourth, and then followed The Poet, Captain Webster, and July, Lady Emma comiug next, and Major George's pair (Nelbon and Wapiti) last. *** Come we now to Nelson's raco, so often referred to that its leading features arc known to everybody. Ou paper Nelson seemed to be

the deadest of dead birds. He had won the J Auckland Cup with 7,8, putting up the colonial record for two miles and a-quarfcer to even four minutes ; with 8.4 he had won the Wellington Cup, two miles, hard held ; and with his {penalties be had but 8.5 to cany. Moreover, he was meeting a field that but for the presence of Mr Marshall's pair would have been called miserably poor. Lady Emma was played out ; J natty little Hermitage was scarcely class enough ; and Patrician had just previously failed to stay the Midsummer Handicap distance. The bookmakers, then waning in influence, saw no chance of getting a cut in to save themselves about Nelson (who had been constantly in demand for about six weeks) unless one of Mr Marshall's pair came to the rescue. And of this pair, hopes were chiefly centred on Derringer. Necklace was one of those that Nelson had already " downed " in the Auckland Cup, but Derringer was imagined to be a good one, and there is little doubt that his party had backed him. Personally, as already explained in these columns, I preferred Necklace of the two on the day, but those of the public who will not lay odds on went for Derringer, and the race was regarded as a match between him and Nelson. We know the result. Necklace made the pace; Derringer was never able to get hear the front ; and a most exciting run up the straight ended in Nelson getting home by a nose after a magnificent finish. Nelson's backers were mighty uneasy when they saw Brown at work on him at the foot of the straight, and well they might be. It was the first time in" the season that Nelson had been asked to race ; and no one could say how he would stand pinching. But he took the whip like a Spartan, and answered Brown's repeated calls on him with great gameness. We saw two good jockeys and two splendid horses at work that day, and really I cannot say with whom the honours rest — whether with Nelson and Brown or with Necklace and Sutherland — but there can hardly be any dissent from the opinion that two better horses than these have never started for the Dunedin Cup. *.** Spade Guiuea's Cup in 1887 was a onehorse race. There was nothing to trouble her, and although her then owner, Mr Drake, seemed to be relieved of anxiety when she got home, it may be doubted whether he a.t any stage of the race had the least cause to be fidgety. Hisbig-quartered, lop-eared mare had previously won the New Zealand Cup with 6.10up, defeating Nelson 9.10 and Lochiel 8.2, and on that performance she was entitled- to be deemed a stayer under a light weight. None of those opposedjto her had that reputation, and if it had not been for her defeat in the Midsummer Handicap when carrying 7.12, the same weight as she had at Dunedin, it is doubtful whether the redoubtable Alf would have got anything about his mare from the betting market. The race was barely interesting. Quibble 6.9 made the pace, and for over a mile and ahalf he showed the way, with Rubina second, but half a mile from home these three were abreast. Nearing tho home turn Huxtable let Spade Guinea go, and she at once assumed the lead. Quibble shut up at once,' Patrician struggled on a few strides further, but also collaj^sed ; and the end of it all was that the favourite won easily by two lengths from Rubina, with Hermitage next. »She did not race again at the meeting.

*** In 1888 also the Cup fell to the first favourite, this being that really good colt Gipsy King, who started at 3 to 2 in a field of nine, carrying the top weight, 8.4. The public that year were not only successful in picking the winner, but they all spotted the next best, for Springston, who was placed second, went out second favourite. The race, however, was by no means a gift to the winner. He was pushed, though not to the extent of being put into difficulty, and if it had been known beforehand that Springston was good enough to lower the record — which the result showed was the case — there would have been a more liberal price obtainable about the Otago-bred colt. It will be remembered that the first to show in front after the field were under way was Tetford 8.0, while Brewer 6.8 and Springston 6.13 lay second and third after going out of tho straight the first time. After a mile had been run at a pretty hot pace Springston was found in front, with Brewer, Tetford, and Gipsy King close up. As they went on in the last round Gipsy King ran into second place, and he allowed Springston to lead him by a length until in a line for home, where there was a good set-to between the pair. This lasted until about 50yds from home, when Gipsy King had Springston settled, but the favourite had to keep going, and when he was landed first past the post by three-quarters of^ a length he had not a great deal to spare. The resuscitated Artillery, who was then in much the same condition as Crackshot was this year, gained third place, but I think it was only on sufferance. St. Clair was fourth, Quibble fifth, and then followed Snapshot, Brewer, Tetford, and Torrent. It was a good performance of Gipsy King's, but not so meritorious as his victory in the D.J.C. Handicap with 9.2 the next day.

*** Calamity overtook the plungers on the 1889 Cup. It was reckoned such a good thing for Dudu 8.5, who had won the Wellington Cup, that odds were betted on her in the machine, and there were not a few good judges who figured it out beforehand that there would be nothing to make her extend herself. She came down here very well to all appearance, and finished absolutely last ; and when she, won at a mile and a-half the next day, there was a great amount of dissatisfaction. Since then, however, Dudu has shown that she is not so reliable as we took her to be ; it has been pretty well proved that she cannot stay two miles in good company ; and not a few think that Mr Cutts was unjustly suspected in connection with the incident referred to. There were seven starters for the race in question. Occident 6.3 took the lead as soon as the flag fell, and in the first mile Lardner took him along two or three lengths in front of Dudu 8.5, with Vandal 6.7 third and Manton 8.10 at the head of the others. Dudu was steadied, allowing Vandal to take second place as they came into the straight, but as they entered on the last round she was again second, while Occident appeared to be coming back to his horses, and Sultan 8:0 was improving his position. Duclu collared Occident at the six-furlong post, and Sultan went up to Vandal, the leaders going on in two pairs. Thus they travelled to the quarter-mile post, where Dudu suddenly collapsed and appeared to have broken down, for everything in the race passed her. Meanwhile Sultan drew up to Vandal, and passing him galloped into the straight with a slight lead. The race was then over, as Sultan was never again challenged, but ran home an easy winner by over a length. Occident finished a poor third, St. James was fourth, Manton fifth, Enid sixth, and Dudu last.

*t* The Cup of 1890 somewhat resembled that of 1886, that is in that there was a poor field but a splendid finish as between two of the starters. lam talking of the great race we saw run by St. James 7.12 and Occident 9.4. And yet in one important respect there was no similarity between the two incidents. Nelson and Necklace were a match on their merits ; whereas in regard to the other pair Occident ouKht to have won by half a furlong. The race is hardly worth describing, but it may be as

well, since we have all the others, to bring this also to recollection. Ixion 6.12 was first to move, and for the first mile the order was — Ixion first, St. James second, Don Caesar 6.7 third, and Occident last. As they began the last mile Occident had headed Don Cresar, and at the back of the course St. James went up to Ixion. Occident began to put on the pace when about four furlongs from home, and at the quarter-mile post he and St. James aud Ixion were abreast. St. James led into the straight : then Occident dished Ixion and went after St. James ; and an exciting set-to ended in_ what was as nearly a dead heat as could be without actually being one, the judge's verdict being " St. James by a nose." This result was mainly owing to White's superb horsemanship and an error of judgment on the part of Occident's rider, who did not come as soon as he was told to do.

*** Last year White again rode the winner, his mount this time being on Freedom, who was handicapped at 8.3. Cruchfield 7.8 was in front as they raced past the stand, but Assyrian King 6.5 took command a little further on, and led all the way round till a mile had been covered, when Prime Warden took charge, Cusdin being dissatisfied with the pace. Entering the last mile he was just clear of Assyrian King, after whom followed Cruchfield, Occident, Hilda, and Freedom in that order. Assyrian King cried a go at the five-furlong I post, and Freedom moved up into a good I position half a mile from home. Hilda gave it up at the quarter-mile and Prime Warden also i collapsed. Cruchfield was then left in the lead with Occident second, and thus they turned for ! home, but Freedom was then asked for his effort, and he made it so gallantly as to jump to the front and lead the way to the post, which he reached first by a length and a-half. Cruchfield was two lengths behind Occident ; and then came the beaten lot, Hilda, Prime Warden, and Assyrian King. The time was 6sec slower than Gipsy King's. *,* The Cup this year was captured by the horse that was favourite from the time the weights" appeared till the morning of the race, and yet it caused more interest than usual, for Merrie England's followers were very sweet upon the brown horse's chance, Cruchfield had strong support, and Crackshot's recent gallops had gained him many friends. Thus it came about that Occident's party, who were quite confident all along, got a very fair price in the machine, the fact being that most of them had their bit on before the day of the race; while Merrie England's supporters had held off till the last gallops were over, aad then had to go to the totalisator or stand off. The money went on to Merrie England so briskly at the finish, that he quite knocked Occident out as first favourite. The result was a complete take-down for many good judges. I must say that I did not like the look of Merrie England when he came out to do his preliminary, for he sweated profusely and seemed a bit dull in his movements; but still I thought he would run a good horse. And so he did. Not good enough, however, to win, nor to be dangerous. It was about six furlongs from home that Derrett made the first call on him, and he was soon among his horses, but Occident and Cruchfield were going strongly along the back stretch and showing no signs of coming back to him, wherefore Derrett had to start riding Merrie England in grim earnest, and the effort was maintained to the home turn. Before reaching that point it was evident to everybody that he could never win, but he was ridden right out and would have taken third place if he could have got it. Those who backed him may be quite assured that they got a square run for their money. That may also be said about every horse in the race, though most of them eased up in the straight when their chances of catching the leaders were absolutely gone. The finish was entirely confined to Occident and Cruchfield. They were pretty well together when the last turn was rounded, Ross having saved Cruchfield for a special effort at that point, but Occident immediately responded to Sharp's call and j soon ran out of danger, though he was kept j going all the way home, and probably had nob so much to spare as some seemed to think. He could not, indeed, have gone very much faster, I should say, considering that he cut the record. That he was able to do this was the result of his splendid condition. He was, probably, never s i fit before, and Waddell must have felt rewarded for all his pains when he saw his pet bounding along in such a determined fashion. Sharp also deserves praise for his excellent riding of the horse. He seemed to me to display extraordinarily good judgment all through the race. Cruchfield also was turned out very fit, and it may nob be unprofitable to remember that he got to the winning post very nearly if not quite as fast as Gipsy King did when the latter put up the old record. Occident was bred in Tasmania by Mr John Field, and imported to Dunedin by his present owners, Messrs Stephenson and Hazlett, who are to be congratulated on having at last won a Dunedin Cup after many failures. The win was a highly popular one, the owners, the trainer, [and the jockey coming in for many hearty congratulations, while the public expressed their feelings by a loud cheer as "weight" was declared. *** "Vigilant" of tho London Sportsman has been discussing the chances of next season's three-year-olds in the leading classic events, and he concludes as follows :— " As the result of my inquiries, coupled with what I have concluded from personal observation, I now think that a fair handicap between the eight leading candidates for a mile to a mile and a-half race would be as follows :— st. Ib. st.lb. Ormo 9 10 Goldfinch 8 12 LaFleche 9 0 Gantlet 8 8 Flyaway 8 13 Rueil 8 7 El Diablo ... 8 12 Galeopbis 8 7 From the above it will be seen that so far as the Two Thousand and Derby are concerned I have a decided preference for Orme, who should make sure of each event if he keeps Avell and progresses in the right way. As regards the Oaks, I must confess to being somewhat divided in opinion. It is so desperately near a thing between La Fleche and Flyaway on public form that they pose as rival beauties, and if the last-named is specially reserved for the ladies' blue riband, instead of being sent to compete for the Derby and for Mr Leigh's reported LIO.OOO to LIOO yearling wager, she is very likely to clip the wings of Baron Hirsch's unbeaten filly. For the present, at any rate, I shall give preference to neither, but divide my winter vote between La Fleche and Flyaway, giving the former a ' plumper ' for the One Thousand Guineas, m which event Mr Leigh's heroine has no appointment." , „, „ V* As showing the extent to which those who draw horses in sweeps are liable to be called upon by owners of horses in Australia, a New South Wales paper says that a man named Field, a blacksmith on Maneroo station, drew St. Albans II in Tattersall's big sweep on the A.J.C. Summer Cup. Almost _ simultaneously with the receipt of the wire informing him of the result of the drawing, he got another telegram from St. Albans IPs owner threatening to scratch the horse if he was not 1 laid L2OOO to nothing. Field went down to

the nearest office and laid the wager by telegram. The horse ran second, and soon after the race he got a second wire from the horse's owner saying he had had bad luck, and asking Field to wire to Tattersall requesting him to deduct L6OO from his cheque by way of recompense for St. Albans running such a good race. Bigger men, however, than St. Albans IPs owner practice the bleeding business freely, and as the Catechism teaches us to order ourselves reverently to all our betters there can't be very much harm after all in doing as they do.

*** The Palmerston people are said to have been incensed at the action of the Central Taieri Club in claiming to be allowed the use of the 17th March as a race day, but really I do not see that they have a solid grievance, for the day is not theirs either by discovery or by conquest or by priority of possession. Last year the Palmerston races were held on the 12th March ; in 1890 on the 11th ; in 1889 on the 14th ; in 1888 on the 27th ; in 1887 on the 11th. That is as far back as it is necessary to search, for five years is a generation as the term applies to racing clubs. The claim of Central Taieri to the coveted date is also not a strong one so far as reasons are to be found without sinking. The only shadow of a right I can discover is that this club seems to in some way aspire to be a successor to the Tokomairiro Club, which for three years past has raced on St. Patrick's Day. My reason for supposing this to be the basis of the claim is that when the Central Taieri Club was to all appearance on the point of turning up its toes the alternative to the happy despatch was that it should shift to Henley and try Boxing Day if the Tokomairiro Club did not want that date. Finding that the Toko Club was practically defunct, and Boxing Day therefore vacant so i'aras the Taieri was concenied,,Ceutral Taieri came to life again, and now seemingly wants not only Boxing Day but Toko's other disused date as well. If this is the only reason for claiming the 17th of March it is a poor one. Both Palmerston and Central Taieri have in fact no valid right to the date in question— it is unfortunate that both should set up a demand for it simultaneously—and the Dunedin Jockey Club's Committee probably did as wise a thing as it was open for them to do in delivering the Solomonic judgment recorded — viz., telling them that they both could have it. There is no principle involved, and in the absence of any real arguments on either side what could be done but Suffer the rivals to settle it themselves by practically decreeing that the one who can make the best use of the day may stick to it. That is what the whole thing comes to. Ido not sec that the committee could have done anything else. Since writing the above, our Palmerston correspondent writes: — "Consequent on the delay in getting our programme passed by the metropolitan club, leaving insufficient time to advertise and distribute the programme, &c, the committee of the Palmerston Racing Club met on Monday evening and resolved to postpone the race meeting from the 17th to the 31st March." *#* At a meeting on Saturday of the Canterbury Trotting Horse-owners and Trainers' Association Mr H. F. Recce (president) said that the code of suggestions which had been sent to the various trotting clubs had been answered by the Plumpton Park Club. That club had agreed to the suggestions. The Canterbury Trotting Club had not yet replied to the circular, but he could confidently say that it would fall in with their views. The Heathcote Club was the only other club that had replied to the circular, and the letter merely acknowledged the receipt of the suggestions. He would suggest that unless the Heathcote Club meanwhile agreed to the suggestions the members of the association should nob nominate for the events of that club. After discussion it was resolved — "That members of the association do not nominate for the next meeting of the Heathcote Club, unless the code of suggestions is accepted beforehand."

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https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/OW18920225.2.78

Bibliographic details

TALK OF THE DAY., Otago Witness, Issue 1933, 25 February 1892

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TALK OF THE DAY. Otago Witness, Issue 1933, 25 February 1892

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