TALK OF THE DAY.
THE D.J.C. SUMMER MEETIKG.
Owners are reminded that nominations for the Dunedin Jockey Club's summer meeting close on Friday, December 1, and as there are some fairly well-endowed prizes on the programme, a liberal response from those interested should be assured. The principal prize is the Otago Handicap, of 150 soys, and it is to be run over the popular distance of one mile and a-quarter. On the second day the St. Andrew's Handicap, of 125 soys, one mile, is the chief event, and the principal sprint events are the Federal Handicap, of lOOsovs, seven furlongs, and the Grand Stand Handicap, of lOOsovs, six furlongs. Two stakes of lOOsovs each are also provided for two-year-olds, and the distances are four and five furlongs, with the latter distance for the second day's race. Two Welters of 65sovs and 60sovs, to be decided over eight and seven-furlong couraes, and four Hack events of 50sovs each are also included in the list, which also includes two Hurdle events of 75sovs and_ 70sovs each. Handicaps are due on Monday, December 11
THE JOCKEY CLUB STAKES.
Shortly before the last English mall to hand started on its voyage to the southern hemisphere, the Jockey Club Stakes, of lO.OOOsovs, one of the most valuable events decided on the turf, was won (as the osblo informed us at the time) by the Derby winner St. Amant, the son of St. Frusqura and the Muncaster mare Lady Loverule, whose prowess as a racer was held to have been discounted by his uncertain temper. St. Amant had to carry 10.3 over the 14 furlongs of the journey attached to the race, and he cast the distance behind ivt
3.2 3.5 in order to win by three parrs. of a length from Polymelus, who is a half--brother by the crack sire Cyllene to the New South Wales stallion Grafton. A Martagon (sire of Martian) colt named Mondamir finished close up third, but the iFrench colt Gouvernant, the son of Flying Fox, who was sent a 11 to 8 on favourite, ran badly, and finished outside the places. St. Amant has been somewhat of a failure since he enrolled his name amongst the equine heroes who have captured the Blue Ribbon of the turf, but his past failures are discounted by his right to be placed on the list with such cracks as Isms-lass, Persimmon, Cyllene, Flying Fox, Sceptre, and Rock Sand, who figure as winners of the Jockey Club Stakes, althoue-h he also earns the further distinction of being the greatest outsider that has ever scored in the race. THE MODERN RACING SEAT. In alluding to the modern racing seat an English writer said: "To America, it must be confessed, we are indebted for many useful inventions and muoh desirable information — with a very voluminous per contra ! It is open to . question whether the racing Beat under consideration may not be legitimately classed in the latter category. It was adopted of necessity by the majority of our English "jockeys, and has since remained in favour. This - peculiar position in the saddle - was originally introduced in the States some six or «even years ago. To the craze for records its inception is attributable, and without doubt the duration of races "on the flat has been reduced by the innovation. Five-furlong sprints are now generally adiieved in from two to four or five seconds less time than was the case a decade ago. But what of that? If the forelegs of a youngster could cope with five furlongs in lrain 6sec and stand the strain, •what is the advantage to. the turf, or owner, -or backer, or sportsman, good, bad, or indifferent, if there be a gain of 4sec or more at the cost of the tender suspensory ligaments -of one of Nature's most beautiful creatures — a two-year-old thoroughbred? This .emanation of the confounded ingenuity of Uncle Sam, who is not and,- it may be respectfully submitted, never was a horseman in the higher -sense 6f the word, but who nevertheless has a knack of getting 'right there' without superfluous circumlocution or exertion, was simply, .achieved in the effort, as -suggested, to cut time; and cut time it did at all hazard. Weight was rightly regarded as the chief factor in the problem. The question then cropped up as to the most fitting distribution of _ this great factor. Not only how it was to be carried, but how its carriage could be turned to most advantage. Hence some interesting experiments. It was found that a racehorse, saddled and bitted, turned the eeale at, say. 10051b. A jockey was found to weigh .1301b. The horse~ was ■ then placed •with its forelegs only on the scale, which was level with the ground*, upon wliich the hind "hoofs rested- The forepart of the animal in this position' "weighed approximately 5801b — more than one-half of its ■whole, weight. Next, the pressure on the forelegs of the- horse, with the jockey seated -at ease- in the saddle, in a normal position, ' proved' to be 6s2lb, an increase of 621b — that is, 51b less than- half the full weight •cf the- rider- 'We now i come to the crucial point of what the horse probably thinks a diabolical system for screwing out the coveted 4sec in speed beyond its natural capacity. Thus: the jockey was next stuck up on the neck of the horse. In that position the "«Sale turned at 7081b— that is, there was an increase of 1281b in ihe weight of the forepart, of the horse, or 661b more than when the jockey was seated in the normal position. It would appear, then, that riding a finish in the American style is equal to doubling the weight of the jockey 8o far as regards the forequartcr of his mount, and as it is becoming customary to adopt this crouching position from start to finish the increased strain on the forehand is sustained throughout the race, and the ligaments are thereby frequently strained beyond all power of recuperation. The immediate effect of throwing the burthen to be carried forward 5s apparently to force the horse to take a longer and quicker stride with the hind legs in order to get them well under the ■weight to preserve his balance; hence we get the advantage of our old enemy with the scythe and the hour-glass, and cheat him of a few seconds.. But it remains to be_ seen whether the system is likely to result in the ultimate improvement of our noble friend the horse, or of his rider, or whether the one will in time develop the hindquarters of. a kangaroo, while the other, •from iis too assiduous cultivation of what has been termed the monkey-on-a-stick style of riding, will revert to the prehistoric conformation of the ape."
THE ikKE COUNTY MEETING-, Racing-has been in a somewhat languisninc condition in the Lake County district for some time past, but .a strong effort is being- made to galvanise a healthy vitality Into- the -game by the many enthusiasts in that part of the world. The first step in this direction was brought -about by the amalgamation of the Lake County J ° ck ey Club and the Arrow Jockey Club, and the result is that a liberally-endowed programme has been issued for a meeting which is to take place on December 15 and 16. The principal items on the card are the Lake County Cup, of 45sovs, one mile; the Jockey Club Handicap, of 40sovs, seven furlongs; and the Goldfields Handicap Time Trot, of 40sovs, two miles. The last-named 'event is to receive 15 nominations or the race will be abandoned, but euch a stake should have no difficulty in attracting more than the minimum number of entries. Other stakes on the programme a r e the Flying Handicap, of 30sovs, six "furlongs; Shorts Handicap, of 30sovs, four "furlongs; and a five-furlong Maiden Plate, of 25sovs, for horses that have never won a race exceeding 20sovs in value. In addition to the Goldfields Trotting Handicap, of 40sovs, there are also two other trotting handicaps of 25sovs each. The balance of the programme is made up with hack events, a District Handicap Hack Race, and a Farewell Handicap, of 20soys. Nominations for the J.C. Handicap, Lake County Cup, Shorts Handicap, and all the handicap trots close on Saturday, December 2. Handicaps are due on December !7 and acceptances fall due on December 14, which is also general entry day. Those vho intend patronising the meeting should makes note that the Alexandra. Cromwell, and Vincent meetings follow that of the iLake County Club, making a circuit of days' racing.
THE STRATH-TAIERI HACK MEETING.
' Another addition to our already long list Uf racing clubs celebrated its. first birthday
on Friday last at liliddleinarch, when the initial meeting of the Strath-Taieri Hack Club brought off a programme of eight events. The club has laid out a six-furlong course within easy approach of the township, and although one of the turns is capable of improvement, the surface of the track was level, and in better order than one might expect to find the ground at the first meeting of a small club. The attendance was very good, and would probably total about midway between 400 and 500 persons, whose punting inclinations were catered for by 18 fielders, who were licensed by the club. The prices on offer and laid by the fielders were fairly liberal, and as far as could be learnt the men of the bag and pencil had a fairly good day, although the wins were all on the small side. One thing that principally accounted for the fielders' success was that more than one candidate which carried greater support than i what it would have been entitled to under the ordinary course of affairs failed to act up to expectations, and one or two winners which should have been stout favourites were comparative good things for the bookmakers. , A case in point may be quoted in the case of one astute punter, who found a winner on the sole reason that a certain horse could not be made to go slow enough to lose ; and his forecast proved to be absolutely correct. The race for the Mile and A-half Trot looked particularly suspicious, and one of the candidates in the Middleinarch Cup was kept so far out of his ground in the early stages that the apparently bold effo-rt his rider made in the run home was a painful waste of energy. Then, again, an absolutely unmarketable quantity in the Maiden, which ran in the position justified by the betting, was well backed in another race, which it won from end to end. The Flying Handicap proved the best race and least suspicious-looking item on the card Jewel Case opened favourite at 2's to 1, and tightened up to evens, but money unexpectedly came for the others, and the Casket ©elding lengthened out again, and started at 2's, the same price as Toney. The most notable thing which occurred during the day happened in the Hack Handicap, which was run twice owing to the field originally running the journey about 10 minutes before the official time on the card. The majority of punters and a few of the fielders clamoured for a "norace" decision from the stewards, who were evidently in a quandary resulting from a meagre acquaintance with rr^'ug law. To further accentuate the difficulty a protest for -inconsistent running was • iodged, and after a delay of about half an hour had taken place as a result of the wrangle the writer's opinion was asked, and when it was pointed out that the stewards had no option in the matter, the Tace was ordered to be run over again. For the benefit of those unacquainted with the rule bearing on the point the following quotation should prove of interest. In part XXV, clause 4-, it is laid down that "a start in front o £ the starting post, or on a- wrong course, or before the appointed time shall be void, and the horses shall be* started again as soon as practicable." Clause 5 further states -that "the starter's decision shall be final except in a case of- a start in front of a starting post, or on a wrong course, or before the appointed time." The second clause emphasises its predecessor, and the stewards also were prevailed upon to declare all bets off on the first race. This was a questionable decision, but as the majority of punters on the ground were on the beaten favourite it met with almost general aproval. Racing clubs iit this colony do not take cognisance of straight-out betting because the totalisator overshadows everything else in that respect, but a rule synonymous in effect can be found m the "Rules of the Totalisator," part XXX, clause 17, which states that "if the stewards order a race to be run again the totalisator shall be closed so far as the first attempt is concerned, and may be opened on the second attempt as if for a distinct race; the dividends shall be paid according to the result of the final attempt." Taking that rule for a guidance, the stewards had no power, or else misused their pow-er, to declare bets off on the first race. It is true stewards- have power to declare a race void, but if a race is run from a false start or before its appointed time it is reasonable to assume that that could not be sufficient ground to declare a race void, or to justify cancellation of all bets. If, however, the day's sport was not carried out under the strict rule of racing law, still, taking things all round, the day was far from being unenjoyable, and there is no reason why the club should not provide its patrons with a pleasant day's racing at some future date.
THE TAHUNA PARK MEETING.
j The Tahuna Park Trotting Club will comImencte its spring meeting on Saturday next, land it will' be interesting to note" how the ' horses act. on fhe improved track. The club is effering a prize of 20sovs to the owner and a £5 gold medal to the rider or f driver 'of a horse doing the fastest time under 2min 23sec, and owners are to notify tha club when they are trying for the purse, so that the horse can be properly I timed. Some fairly good fields have paid up for the various -events on the first day 6 card, and the following may run prominently in their races: — Trial Handicap.— Almont Jr. 1, General H 2 Spring Pony Handicap.— Vixen 1, John Gilpin 2. _ , Musselburgh Handicap.— Exchequer. Stewards' Handicap.— Moutere 1, Jiai Ladies^ Bracelet-— Michael 1, Airedale 2. Domain Handicap.— Lord Althorpe 1, Fichu 2. „ November Handicap.— David Harum 1, Ebones3 2. Dash Handicap.— Strathmore 1, Georgie M. 2.
THE TIMARU MEETING.
The acceptances received for the South Canterbury Jockey Club's spring meeting are numerically strong, and some good sport should bo furnished by the various events on the card. A field of six has paid up for the Timaru Handicap, and Bulawayo should be difficult to beat if he is in good order. Next to the top-weight Convoy may give a ■good account of himself if the ground is firm. Nine have paid up for the Flying Handicap, and the race looks very open oh paper. Jolly Roger may prove a dangerous candidate, and next to him Canada should be one to give a good account of himself. A field of 12 has continued engagements in the President's Welter, and Highland Fling and Vardo should prove a dangerous pair. Harvest and Stepaside should run well in the Summer Handicap and Grand Stand or Pa Tuna should be close up at the. finish of the District
Handicap, whilst Hemlock and Buccleuch read the best of the lot in the hack races.
An American advocate for clipping horses says: — "A clipped horse docs not take cold as easily as one having a long coat of hair, because Lhe perspiration is evaporated more rapidly. In the case of the undipped horse the moisture from the body permeates and remains in the long hair, evaporating very slowly, while on a clipped horse it is in contact with the atmosphere almost as soon as it comes through the skin, and is evaporated at once. -Every horseman knows that wiih a short coat a hot horse dries off very quickly. The clipped horse is practically immune from colds, which often result in making a horse stiff or lame or a wheezer for life. After his work or exercise, a cli^ned horse is not covered by a long, thick, damp coat which uses a great deal of his body heat to dry. Consequently very little of the heat energy of the animal is used up in the process, and as a result he does not require as much food to maintain a normal temperature. The energy whiph should go to recuperate his body is not diverted. A clipped horse can be groomed in much less time than a longcoated animal. There is less place for the cxtrtrior accumulation of dirt and the impurities thrown off through the pores. Clipping also allows cleaning to be done in a more thorough manner. There is less dirt to be removed and it is easier to get at r Everyone has noted the decrease in the appetite of a horse when shedding of the hair is going on. This process with the horse's regular labour is a serious draft on his vitality. Nature can be anticipated in the effort by clipping. The artificial removal docs the work at once and relieves the animal of the extra exertion. It also does away entirely with the unpleasantness of having the hair falling upon you when riding. Appearance is altogether in favour of the clipped animal. He looks cleaner and neater; he keeps in better health and he acts more sprightly. Show ring horses as a rule are clipped about two weeks before the event. They quickly gain in weight and appearance, which adds materially to the owner's financial returns.
A FARRIERS BILL. The Farriers Bill, that will be brought before the Legislative Assembly of Victoria by Mr Fairbai-n on November 22, is a more than ordinarily important measure from the po?at of view of horse-owners (says an exchange), for it seeks to put a stop to many faults that pertain to the present state of things, under which any man can call himself a farrier, whether qualified or not. An unqualified man runs a grave risk of injuring a horse for lite by an improper method of treating the hoof-s and nutting on the shoes, and it is highly desirable that he should be legahslated against. The- bill provides that a person must not follow the calling of a horseshoer unless he has had five years ' apprenticeship, and knows the anatomy ot a horse's foot. He must pass an examination to the satisfaction of a board, consisting of seven farriers and two veterinary surgeonsj who will issue certificates to those proving themselves competent. It is set out that all farriers who have been in business for 12 months shall be entitled to registration, this provision being in the interest of existing farriers. Mr W. T. Kendall, M.R.C.V.S.. Principal of the Melbourne Veterinary College, says that some, s^oh measure as this is badly needed in the interest of all horse-owners in the State. " Since the custom of serving an apprenticeship of seven years to the trade has been abandoned," lie says, "young men who have been a few months at the trade commence busiaies-s as farriers, with the- result that many horses are irreparably damaged by bad shoeing. Horse-owners, having aio means of knowing whether a man is competent to shoe a horse or not, suffer great loss ; hence it becomes the duty of Parliament to protect them. From to two-thirds- of the working life of a horse is often lost through bad shoeing, and the aggregate loss caused this way means tens of thousands of pounds every year. One horse out of every four working in Melbourne is lame, to a greater or less extent, and much of this lameness might be prevented or alleviated if farriers were properly trained in the principles of their art, and the necessary training cannot be got unless a proper period be devoted to study and practice under a teacher. In all advanced countries the art of horse-shoeing is controlled by act of Parliament, or in some other effective way. and in America the shoeing of trotting horses is reduced to a positive science, a very large amount of attention being given to the set of a shoe, to remove all undue pressure from the tendons, and give the horse the maximum "of comfort, whether moving or standing still. In Australia, such high art in shoeing horses is almost unknown, but it is time something was done to taring about an improvement by insisting upon a proper measure of capability being: possessed by those who have charge of this department of affairs. It is quite as -essential that a farrier who has to deal with living animals should have a certificate of competence as that a plumber should be licensed, and it is unfair that incompetent farriers should be allowed to compete with good men. Master-farriers and journeymen alike are in favour of the Bill becoming law, .and it is fully recognised that the horse, the owner, and the farrier alike would be benefited by the proposed legislation. _ The bill is' also approved by the veterinary profession, the members of which_ recognise that it is humane in its intention, and can injure no one."
THE WTNDHAM MEETING.
The Wyndham Racing Club is out with a programme for its annual meeting, which is set down to take place on January 1. The principal event is to be the New Year Handicap, of fl-Osovs, one mile and a distance; and the next events in point of value are the Open Welter (of 35sovs, seven furlonps) and the District W-elter (of 35soys, one naile). There is also a 35sovs Trotting Handicap on the card, a High Weight Hack Race (of 30sovs), a Flying Handicap (of 30sovs, five furlongs), and a 30sovs Mile Trot, together with a 25sovs District Hack, completes the wogramme. Nominations close on December 8. Handicaps are to be d-eclar-ed on the 15th, and acceptances on Dec-sinker 22.
SALE OF BLOOD STOCK.
MELBOURNE, November 14. At Mr Yuill's sale of blood stock, Maniapoto was passed in at £1500, the reserve being £2000. The sales included Boabdil, 925g5; Scotland, 850gs; Demas^ $50g$x 3%ebes ; dam pi Baa&s, 600^
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TALK OF THE DAY., Otago Witness, Issue 2697, 22 November 1905
TALK OF THE DAY. Otago Witness, Issue 2697, 22 November 1905
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