TALK OF THE DAY.
* # * The recent sloppy weather has considerably interfered with training operations at the , Forbury, and most of the local horses engaged at the coming meeting will be somewhat back- ' ward in condition. As the rains have extended over a large area the same drawback will probably be experienced by visiting horses, and if this is the case matters will be somewhat equalised. All the same, our local trainers are much exercised over the difficulty.
* # * Isinglass, intelligence of whose victory in the Two Thousand Guineas at Newmarket has reached us through the Press Association's cable service, started three times last season and was successful on each occasion. The value of the three stakes which he secured was £4577. His first win was at Newmarket in the Maiden Plate, though, the reports of the race say, he was not then as fit as he could have been made. He next appeared in the New Stakes at Ascot and started at 100 to 30 in a field ,of 10. Royal Harry was the actual favourite, but was unplaced, and Fealar, who was a 50 to 1 chance, ran nearest to Isinglass, with Ravensbury (who finished second over the Rowley mile Jast week) a head behind. The third appearance of Isinglass was in the Middlepark Plate at the Newmarket First October meeting. For that event Dame President, the winner of the One Thousand Guineas last week, was the favourite at 7 to 4, a rumour that Isinglass had not been doing well having driven him to tens. When the flag fell he was slow off the mark and followed for some distance in the rear, but presently he began to catch and then to pass his field, and in the end he wore them all down and won in comfortable fashion from Ravensbury, who, like him, carried 9.3. Raeburn, who waa third in the Two Thousand Guineas yesterday week, was fourth on that occasion, two lengths behind Isinglass, of whom "Rapier" wrote in the Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News that he won by that combination of speed, stamina, and resolution which one looks for in a good horse. What made the victory of Isinglass in the Middlepark Plate the more noteworthy was the fact that a short time before he had cut his foot, the consequence being that he could do no strong work.
*h* It will probably be found when the details of the event come to hand that T. Loates, having secured the necessary permission to ride, had the mount upon Isinglass in last week's engagement. The son of Isonomy, who has been the winter favourite for the Derby, to be run on the 31st inst., caused his supporters some uneasiness at the close of February and in the early part of March by frequent absence from exercise, which was attributable to a mishap that occurred in his stable, the colt getting his leg over the collar-rein one night. Private trials, however, showed that he had retained the grand action he displayed last season, his hind leverage being something tremendous. He is said, indeed, to have been the highest-tried two-year-old that the trainer, Jewitt, ever had under his care, and as he was undoubtedly run-
ning on at the finish of the Middlepark Plate, in which he beat the best of his year, with the exception of Meddler (whose nomination for the Derby, as has been already explained, has lapsed through the death of Mr Abington Baird), there is no question of his being a thorough stayer. One effect of his success in the race at Newmarket last week has been the installation of Isinglass as a very strong favourite' for the Derby. On the Wednesday — the day before the Two Thousand was run — the betting for the blue riband was, as we learn by cable : 9to 4 agst Isinglass, 100 to 12 Raeburn, 100 to 8 Fealar, 100 to 5 LeNicham. The day after that event was run Isinglass had become an even-money favourite, and there was none else better backed than Ravensbury, who was quoted at 10 to 1, while Raeburn stood at 100 to 8. That no odds should be obtainable about the horse's chance almost four weeks before the Derby date argues that his victory is regarded as the greatest moral possible.
\* If Isinglass should win the Derby, his owner, Mr H. M'Calmont, will gain the first "leg" of his curious double-event bet, of which mention was made in this paper four or five weeks ago, the Cheveley Park squire having backed himself not only to win the Derby with Isinglass, but also to beat Mr George Newnes in the next Parliamentary election for the Newmarket Division of Cambridgeshire. In the case of Isinglass winning, an odd sort of coincidence will be realised, for it appears that Mr M'Calmont was born on a Derby day— that, it is said, on which Kettledrum won— and it would undoubtedly be a very appropriate birthday present that the stakes would make if Isinglass were successful. In connection with this matter, it has been pointed out that only twice since the institution of the Middlepark Plate in 1866 have winners of that race— and Isinglass, as above stated, comes within that category — won the Derby, Melton and Donovan being the pair that were successful at Epßom. Commenting upon this factj a correspondent of the Sportsman makes the assertion that placed horses in the Middlepark Plate have, as a rule, turned out better for the Derby than the actual winnerß. The English sporting public do not appear, however, to attach much importance this year to that "rule," or else Isinglass would not occupy the position he does in the betting market. If the "rule" were to apply this year, we should probably find Ravensbury winning the Derby. In the light of his running in the Middlepark Plate, since confirmed by his running in the Two Thousand Guineas, it certainly seems as if Isinglass will give Mr M'Calmont that first "leg" in.
*** Ravensbury, who occupied second place in the Two Thousand Guineas, is, like Isinglass, a son of Isonomy, his dam being Penitent, but his record last season was not such a good one. As a matter of fact he secured only one winning bracket, but that was worth £2630, his victory being gained at Liverpool in the Great Lancashire Breeders' Produce Stakes. He ran disappointingly on other occasions. At York he started a warm 5 to 4- favourite in the Prince of Wales' Stakes, but only ran second, being beaten by Queen of Navarre, who had a fortnight previously been upset by Royal Scot in the Priory Plate at Lewes. Another venture of Ravensbury's was in the Great Breeders' Foal Stakes — the richest two-year-old stake of the year, being valued at £4937 10s— and in that race he finished sixth. Third place in the Two Thousand Guineas was filled'' by Raeburn, who belongs to that wealthy sportsman, the Duke of Portland, and is fashionably bred, being by St. Simon from Mowerina. Towards the close of last season one of the leading English sporting writers found nothing to commend about naeburn except his breeding. He looked insignificant, and "if we did not remember," wrote the scribe, "that he is a son of St. Simon and Mowerina, and on careful examination find quality in him accordingly, we should not set him down as anything but a commoner." The horse seems, however, to have wintered well and to have made vast outward improvement. "The son of St. Simon and Mowerina has grown all the right way," one of the contributors to the Licensed Victuallers' Gazette recently wrote, " and is now, in my opinion, one of the handsomest three-year-old colts in training, but, even should the improvement turn out to be as real as it is apparent, Raeburn has, on paper, an immense amount of leeway to make up, and it may be doubted if, on the Middlepark day, 101b would have done much, if any, more than bring him andlsinglass together."
*#* The number of victories claimed last season by Raeburn was three— the same number as Isinglass was credited with. There was this great difference, however, between the performances of the two, that whereas Isinglass only started in the three events which he won the Duke of Portland's colt was unsuccessful on three or four occasions. His total earnings, too, were not so much as Raven sbury's single victory brought his owner in, the amount accruing from the three wins being £1744-. At the Ascot meeting in June, Raeburn secured the Stud Produce Stakes from Shelley and Son of a Gun, the latter being a good favourite, and on the strength of this success he was third favourite, at 7 to 1, for the richly endowed Sandringham Gold Cup, run at the Sandown July meeting, in which, however, he was unplaced. At Goodwood, the Ham Stakes brought out the son of St. Simon, on whom 9 to 4 was laid, and he won by a neck, and at the Newmarket First October mesting his third victory was gained, for, starting at the odds of 6 to 4 on, he disposed of Haut Brion and Haddon in the Boscawen Stakes. He was well backed also for the Middlepark Plate, and he finished a moderate fourth, two lengths behind Isinglass, from whom he was in receipt of 21b. At the Houghton meeting in November he was beaten by half a length by Meddler in the Dewhurat Plate. His encounter in that event with Meddler created a good deal of interest, because by that time Isinglass was regarded as good goods for the approaching Derby, and Meddler was also much fancied, and as Isinglass and Meddler had never met it was supposed that Raeburn's position in the race would give a line between the two. The result was to give the public a preference for Isinglass, who, if the form shown by him in the Middlepark and by Meddler in the Dewhurst Plate were taken to be reliable, was about 21lb the better horse. The meeting between Meddler and him in the Derby would have been very interesting, and the race would not have been such a foregone conclusion as at the present time it is thought to be.
* # * The Saraband filly, La Belle Sifiieuse, who placed the One Thousand Guineas to her owner's credit last Friday, was a good deal talked about last season as being smart, but she remained a maiden, her public appearances having been unsuccessful. Sir J. Blundell Maple's filly Dame President, who ran second to La Belle Siffleuse, was also esteemed very highly. At the Newmarket First October meeting the daughter of Barcaldine and Geheimniss won the Maiden Plate so easily indeed, from 15 others, that after the race enthusiasts went about proclaiming that she ought to be the best of the year. On the stiength of her
success in that £100 Maiden Plate she was made the favourite for the Middlepark Plate, but did not gain a place. Next day, however, she came out and won the Prendergast Stakes, but only by a length from Inverdon, who was giving her 91b over and above her sex allowance. In that race she ran shiftily all the way, and conveyed the idea that she was quite as unreliable as some of her relatives. Her successes were confined to the two races which have been mentioned, and the value of the stakes she gained was £947. Treasure, who finished third in the Classic last Friday, was, like the winner, a maiden.
*#* A few meagre particulars have come to hand respecting the events of the first week's flat racing in England. The campaign opened at Lincoln on March 20, when, in the opening event, T. Loates began work well after his forced retirement by scoring a ready win on Cabin Boy. The first two-year-old race of the season was won by M. Cannon on Favour Royal, a son of Favo and Red Queen, whilst the chief race of the day, the Batthyany Plate (handicap) fell to a 100 to 8 chance in Earl of Annandale, who got home a head from Gossoon. On the second day interest naturally centred in the Lincolnshire Handicap, for which there wag an even score of starterß. There was a tremendous rush at the finish to back the Irish mare Mina, so much money being behind her that at last it waß difficult to get any offer, and 4- to 1 was the best obtainable at flagfall. Mina had for some days beforehand been becoming a better and better favourite, from the time the stable commission had been satisfactorily worked, and four days before the race publicity was given to a rumour that Mr Eyas's mare had been supported to win quite £40,000. Pensioner, who had been at the head of the quotations from the start of speculation, finished up at 5 to 1, at which price also Gangway was quoted, both meeting with great support. These short prices inevitably caused extended odds to be offered against the other candidates, and 100 to 7 was on offer bar three. WoH's Crag was one who went very badly in the market— this being due to a report that he displayed temper when asked to do a gallop three days before— and 20 to 1 was on offer at last with no takers. From the description of the race, given elsewhere, it will be seen that the favourite shut up early in the race and that Wolf's Crag, in the end, won very comfortably. The winner fetched 1300gs as a yearling, but was secured last September by his present owner for 340gs. The big two-year-old race on the third day of the meeting — the Brocklesby Stakes — fell to the Australian sportsman, Mr D. Cooper, through the aid of the well-bred filly Glare, who started at 10 to 1. Glare has severable valuable engagements, including the Oaks.
* # * Following upon Liucoln came the Liverpool Spring meeting, at which the Hylton Handicap, won by the New Zealand-bred filly Daydream, was decided on March 23 The field was composed of 10 runners. Daydream, who carried 6.11, was ridden by a jockey named Madden, and won very easily by two lengths from Sir Blundell Maple's Bombshell, 4-yrs, 6.12 (P. Chaloner), and Sir R. Jardine's Rouge Dragon, 4yrs, 6 9 (W. Kendall). The top weights of those that started was Shemer, lyrs, 8.7, ridden by M. Cannon. Dusk started favourite at 3 to 1, and Daydream, who waß greatly fancied by her party, was next iv demand at 7to 2. On the following day the Grand National was run. The field of candidates, which had for days before the eventful one been growing small by degrees and beautifully less, was finally reduced to one of 15 starters — a decided falling off from the 25 who competed in this race last year. The favourites had been doing well for some time prior to the race, and were very firm in the market right away from the time that betting commenced. Cloister and The Midshipmite, stable companions, divided the favouritism, according to the latest Jblnglish files, and it is not a little interesting to note that Sansier, who had been engaged to ride The Midshipmite, inclined to the opinion that that horse would win, while Dollery expressed a preference for the chance of his own mount, Cloister. The top weight eventually started at 9 to 2, and apparently had matters all his own way, for he cantered in a winner by 4-0 lengths. As already stated, this is the first occasion that a horse carrying 12.0 or over has won the race since it was made a handicap. "Robin Hood," the sporting correspondent in England of the Australasian, states that Cloister also beat a time record in the race, but if 9oain 42fsec be the correct time for the event it is not a record.
* # * The principal event on the opening day of the South Australian Jockey Club's Autumn meeting was the Goodwood Handicap, of six furlongs. There was not a single scratching from the list of acceptors contained in the programme, the whole of the 20 going to the post. The event was regarded as such an open one that although Froude 7.12 was the favourite 5 to 1 was freely obtainable about him. The most fancied of the others were Prosperity 7.6 and Fulham 9.0, but The Arab 7.5 and Quality 8 9 were both well supported. Those which were the first to show in front after the start were Quality and Fulham, these two with The Arab making play into the straight, where the favourite was (sajs " Terlinga") observed to be beaten. Quality then gave way, leaving The Arab and Fulham in front, with Prosperity going well in the centre and Britisher 7 4 creeping up on the rails. The Arab headed Fulham and looked all over a winner, but Britisher gradually made up his ground, and catching The Arab in the last stride, won by a head, while Fulham was the same distance behind the second horse. The winner was bred at Tunetfield and being by The Euglishman out of Victorine, "comes from the same family as The Assyrian and many other good horses. He was quietly backed by a good many, and though the dividend was £23 18s this was not so big as might have been expected.
*** The yearling colt by The Australian Peer from Tornado arrived safe and sound by the Hauroto,and is now in the hands of Sid. Bishop at the St Kilda Btables. The vessel had a very rough passage across, but the only mark the colt has got is the losb of a small finger-patch of hair on the forehead, and this will soon cease to be a disfigurement. A look over this half brother to Tempest shows him to be an exceedingly well-grown bay with a pretty star ou the forehead and a stripe above each hind hoof. These are the only white marks he carries. He is lengthy underneath, with a very short back, and a somtwhati long rein, aud the only objection that might be taken to him is (hat he stems rather narrow behind, and a trifb light in the thighs. It is as likely as not, however, that he may grow out of this when fully developed. As yet, though well grown, he is but a baby horse. Nevertheless, the relationship ti> Tempest is easily seen, when pointed out, in the resemblance he b^ars about the head «o the Cup winner. Altogether this is a very nice col fc, and it is not surprising to learn tha^ Mr Monaghan was offered an advance of £4-0 on the salo price.
* M * Two doubles were brought off at the Ashburton Trotting Club's meeting last week.
Fiona first of all won the Maiden Trot, of a mile and a-half, easily beating 10 others, to nine of whom she conceded 2sec start, the other one receiving 3sec from her, and subsequently she beat 10 others (half of them unbacked) in the Novel Trot, also of a mile and a-balf, paying the not-to-be-despised dividend of £9 17s, which was the biggest handed over during the day by Messrs Mason and Roberts, who had charge of the machine. Albino was the other competitor that annexed a double. This horse was made a strong favourite for the Dash Trot, of a mile, and won easily, and he was also strongly supported in the very next event, the Recovery Stakes, in which, with 28sec start, he just succeeded in beating the scratchy horse, Barney O'Hea. A two-mile harness trofflP was won by Mountjoy, 28sec ; the Two-mile District Trot by Barney O'Hea 2sec, and a three-mile event by Cloud 45sec. The totalisator investments amounted to £713, an increase of £200 on the sum handled at the last meeting.
*#* The acceptances received on Tuesday night for the principal events to be decided on the first day of the Duuedin Jockey Club's forthcoming meeting are quite as good as could have been expected. The response of owners in respect to the Birthday Handicap is indeed better, than was anticipated. The acceptances for this event exceed last yeai's by five, and the defection was looked for of the majority of those that have dropped out. As an opportunity will ' be afforded next week of submitting deliberate anticipations respecting the result, it may suffice at present to say that Tempest and Prime Warden are likely to be dangerous, that Hippomenes and Melinite are worth watching, and that if any one of the 6sfc division has a shop that one ought to be Awarua Rose. The withdrawal of Kulnine from the Tradesmen's Handicap is the most noticeable feature in connection with the acceptances for that race, for which Wakawatea, Heather Bell, Lady Zetland, Liberator, and Tangi Maid are a quintette that may supply the placed horses. The Hurdles should produce a good tussle between Rebel, Smuggler, and Magpie, who on form should about finish in that order, but Moonlight is capable of better things than be has yet shown. The Trot is the mystery of mysteries in the programme, and though t Inferno and Elian may have a show, the running of many of the others left in has been so variable that one cannot with any degree of confidence venture on a selection. The Maiden Plate has attracted 14 entries, against six last year, and two or three of them have recently won small stakes. The Changeling, Puzzle, Much Ado, and Ulva come wjthin this category, and as Much Ado ia well spoken of from Canterbury she may win, though Spurned should be to the fore at the finish. The Selling Race looks a good thing for Derby. The Novel Race, being a handicap on the second day, does not demand attention at the present time. It may be noted, however, that there are only 12 entries for it, against 22 last year, but the total number of acceptances and entries received on Tuesday night was 13 in excess of the record for 1892.
*#* What was known as the Liberator case occupied the attention of his Honor Judge Robinson and a jury for several days in the District Court at Greymouth, and the reports of the proceedings filled columns of the local papers. The action, which, as was stated la&t wetk, resulted in a verdict for the defendants, was brought to recover from the Grey 'Jockey Club the value of the Midland Stakes, alleged to have been wrongfully withheld from the owner of Liberator. This horse finished first in that particular race at the club's last race meeting, but a protest was lodged against him on account of suspicious running in the St. Patrick's Handicap, which was run in the dusk on the previous evening, and the stewards unanimously awarded the stakes to Harkaway, the second horse. The evidence was, as may be imagined, very voluminous, and, as may also be imagined, very contradictory. The one fact which stands out prominently in the whole mass of testimony with which the court was deluged is the fact that Mr Hannan, who occupied the chair at the meeting at which it was agreed to award the stakes to Harkaway, had 25 tickets taken out on the latter horse (only five of them, however, being for himself), on which a dividend of £2 9s was paid. According to his own evidence, Mr Hannan thought Liberator could win and would have backed him, but he was told the horse wa3 "off," and for that reason he put his money on Harkaway. An attempt was made to prove that Mr Hannan was one of the owners of Harkaway, but this was met with a denial from that gentleman. His Honor, in charging the jury, directed them that they were not to find whether the decision was a right decision or a wrong decision, but whether it was an honest decision by which both sides should bs bound. The jury gave as their verdict that the stewards of the club committed an error of judgment in awarding the stakes to Harkaway, but did not act mala fide hi so doing. Upon this finding judgment was given for the defendants with costs, £22 185, but notice of appeal was given.
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TALK OF THE DAY., Otago Witness, Issue 2046, 11 May 1893
TALK OF THE DAY. Otago Witness, Issue 2046, 11 May 1893
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