« ПредишнаНапред »
Racing. There is a clause frequently expressed, that horses must stand at the house of a subscriber to the Fund, and also that they must be plated by a smith who is also a subscriber. In many instances it is so worded that the winner shall not be entitled to recover the Stake in case of a breach of these mandates. Without benefiting the races, or imposing an addition of more than five or six sovereigns, the first clause is often the cause of much inconvenience to the owners of horses : it compels them to resort to inns where the accommodation is frequently inadequate, and where exorbitant charges are too frequently imposed. As to the second, the being compelled to employ a subscribing smith is doubly annoying ; first, in the probability of his being fully engaged ; and, secondly, incompetent to perform the duties required from him. It not unfrequently happens that the owner of a horse is compelled to pay the subscription himself, but should he not be aware that the subscription has not been paid in due time, and his horse comes in first, there are numbers ready to take advantage of such an omission. A case of this nature occurred at Shiffnal this Spring, not highly creditable to the parties concerned.
The stipulation that no public money will be given if the race is walked over for is the most absurd and parsimonious article that can be introduced, as it tends greatly to reduce the fields at country meetings. When the Stakes close only a day or two before the races, owners of horses who live at a distance are deterred from sending them, under an apprehension that there may be nothing to run for, and the races are spoiled for another year should a horse or two only arrive and “be sent empty away." Examples are the best precepts. I will therefore quote one. In 1837 Her Majesty's Plate was walked over for at Guildford, at which place, owing to the supineness of the inhabitants and neighbourhood, it is the only race; but in 1838 no less than ten horses started, the owners of each imagining they might have an easy conquest. Whenever public money is walked over for, a good entry is sure to succeed the following year.
In drawing up such rules as may be necessary to control the affairs of country meetings, it is requisite to observe that they are not in opposition to the established Laws of Racing, and that they are so expressed that no doubt can arise as to their intent and meaning. Much confusion has arisen from want of attention to this subject, and perhaps in nothing more than the 56th of the Rules and Orders, which, however, is now pretty generally understood. Nevertheless, so recently as at the last Croxton Park Meeting, an old-established custom which has prevailed there in opposition to the laws of racing was enforced. For the sake of guarding against such misunderstandings it may not be amiss to detail the case. In the articles for the Billesdon Coplow it is required that the winner of the Bosworth (a Stake by-the-bye not in existence) is to carry 58.; of the Coplow or Tally-ho, 7ib. extra; but it does not specify “ up to the day of running.” The 56th Rule enacts, that if a horse is qualified to start at the expiration of the time of naming, he shall not be disqualified by any subsequent event, unless so specified. Bellissima won the Tally-ho Stakes after the time of naming for the Coplow had expired; nevertheless the Stewards decided that she was to carry the extra 71b. She won with all the
weight-therefore it did not signify; but it would have been a hard case had she been beaten by a head. It was no doubt the intention of the framers of the Billesdon Coplow Stakes that the extra weight should be imposed up to the day of running, although they had neglected to express it: next year it will be more clearly worded.
Whenever it is intended that extra weight shall be carried for winning up to the day of running, or that any other specific qualification shall extend beyond the time of naming, it must be so stated. The 16th Case in the Book Calendar is very explicit on this subject.
The 6th Rule of Racing (page xxx Book Calendar 1838) requires some attention, and in many cases much shrewdness, to prevent its being violated. It is too frequently the custom at country meetings for two or three persons, each having a horse, to run them for Plates and Stakes for which heats are run, winning a heat alternately with such horses as may best suit their interest, greatly to the disadvantage of those persons who have only one horse running. In fact, cases are not wanting of one man having several horses, and running them all in the names of different persons, and running two for races for which heats are run. The intent and meaning of this Rule decidedly extends to exclude not only two or more horses bona fide the property of one person, but also such as he has a share or interest in during the time of the race, or during any other period. There is an old Act of Parliament, which has never been repealed, imposing the forfeiture of the horse if he is entered in the name of any other person than that of his owner ; and it is rather singular that it is not occasionally enforced. It is to be found in the Racing Calendars up to the year 1820. A little care on the part of the Steward might detect parties coalescing with their horses, and his authority ought invariably to put a stop to these petty larceny affairs. So long as a Steward confines his decisions, which he is bound to do, to the Laws of Racing, he possesses great power.
To prevent horses of a superior character from walking over, it is customary at many places to stipulate that the winner shalll be sold for a given sum if demanded by any person having a horse in the race, according to certain articles which will be found in the Book Calendar, Rule 57. It may be considered as equivalent in some degree to handicapping, inasmuch as it tends to keep horses of an equal class together. As the Rule now stands, much imposition arises, and the spirit of it is frequently defeated. Two or more horses of a superior description are started, and an agreement is made between the owners to claim for each other—a transaction never intended, nor in point of fact adopted without leaving room for doubting the strict integrity of the parties : but custom has sanctioned it, and it is no longer considered as actually at variance with the regulation. This is not the only deviation of a law by which the intent and meaning of the act is frustrated: but as both the public and owners of horses suffer to a great extent by the nefarious practices which this law admits, it is time such alterations should be made as will put a stop to them.
Vox. XIX.-SECOND SERIEş.-No. 112.
A valuable horse being entered for a Stake, the winner of which is engaged to be sold for a trifling sum, as a matter of course becomes first favorite : the public back him, and the owner, by having an agent to bet against him, can generally earn some money by his losing ; or if an arrangement be made by the owner for some friend to claim the horse, the owners of the inferior nags have no chance, and their interest is consequently prejudiced.
To make the matter fair for all parties, and by way of frustrating the attempts of crafty and designing persons, laws are introduced ; to which end it appears desirable to recommend something to the following effect :
Any horse, &c. that is entered by the owner, or person acting under his authority, for a Selling Stake to be subject to be claimed within one hour after the race -during the first half hour, by any person having a horse in the race; and after that period, until the expiration of the second half hour, by any other person, at the amount for which the winner is proposed to be sold, together with the amount of the Stake. The claim to be a bona fide claim, and not for the purpose of securing the horse for the original owner: the money to be paid to the Steward at the prescribed time, in conformity with the 57th Rule of the Jockey Club; in default of which he shall have the power of selling the horse by auction, and if any deficiency, it shall be made good by the claimant. In case any person not having a horse in the race desires to claim the winner, he shall give the full amount of selling price and Stakes the same as for a beaten horse, but shall not receive the Stakes, which are to be paid to the owner of the horse.
Should there be more claimants than one of persons not having horses which ran so as to entitle them to a preference, the names of the claimants to be written on slips of paper and thrown into a hat, the first drawn of which to have the option of claiming---neither the omission of paying Stakes nor other subterfuge to be made an excuse for the non-delivery of
horse claimed. The following Stake would have a similar effect, and is comprehended in less space; but by way of making myself perfectly understood I have considered it necessary to offer both :
A Stake of sovs. each, for horses of all ages, weight for age; the winner to be sold for 100 sovs. within one hour after the race, the owners of horses which ran (taking precedence by the places which their horses obtained) to have the privilege of claiming within the first half hour, and also to have the privilege of claiming any horse, entered by the owner or person duly authorised, at the amount for which the winner is engaged to be sold and the full amount of the Stakes : after the expiration of the first half hour, any other person to be entitled to claim
horse entered as aforesaid at the full amount of Stake and selling price.
By the introduction of such a rule, or a Stake drawn up as above, it is evident that a man could not enter a horse worth £500 without running the risk of having him claimed ; and as the motive is to afford an opportunity of winning to those who possess inferior horses, no man who means to act honestly can object to part with his horse if he is not the winner, providing he obtains the amount for which he is proposed to be sold and the amount of the Stakes,
The late affair for the Palace Stakes at Hampton is quite a sufficient proof that something is necessary to keep such men in their places : and assigning another meaning to the word place, a more retired one than a public race-course would be much more consistent with their characters. One of the first considerations with a man of common sense is to ascertain his proper station in society: a public life is the last of all others which a man who cannot act honestly should seek.
WEIGHTS. In weight-for-age races, the difference between three and four-yearold horses varies considerably, according to the time of year and the distance. Many circumstances may require a deviation ; but as an easy mode of reference, a Table is subjoined. It will be observed that 7st. 3fb. is taken as the standard for three-year-olds, and for this reason an allowance of 316. is usual for mares and geldings, which reduces the weight to 7st.—quite light enough to procure jockeys to ride at country places. At Newmarket, Ascot, Goodwood, and such first-rate Meetings, light boys may be found, but they are very unequal to the task of steering round country courses, where the turns are frequently very difficult.
March and April
9 10 10 9 11 2 May and June..
9 6 10 4 10 11 July and August............ 3
9 12 10 5 September and October... 3
8 10 9
9 10 It will be seen that the weights on old horses are rather high in some instances, but if they cannot carry them they are not worth keeping; and the sooner they are put out of training the better. July 18, 1839.
CHAPTERS ON THE HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH TURF,
FROM ITS EARLIEST COMMENCEMENT TO THE PRESENT TIME.
CHAPTER III. List of Foreign Horses, continued-Commencement of York Races-Value of Plates and Prizes in
the olden time-Book-men the ruin of the Turf as an amusement Dr. Hawksworth and Tregonwell Frampton's horse Dragon.
In the present Chapter we shall continue the list of the foreign horses and mares to which we are indebted for the perfection of the English race-horse down to the year 1700, shortly after which time our more regular records of the Turf commence. That there were many foreign horses in the country cotemporary with those we have already mentioned, but which are not duly recorded in the early annals of the Turf, we have little doubt: as, for instance, there was a Lord Montague, of Cowdray in the county of Sussex, who was famous for his breed of race-horses in the reign of Charles the Second, but we have no account of
any of them, excepting a mare long afterwards in the stud of Lord D'Arcy : she was the grandam of the famous little horse and excellent racer Šedbury, son of Old Partner. The mare in question was doubtless of a capital foreign descent, but there is no pedigree attached to her. Another very celebrated animal of the same period was the Old Vintner Mare of Mr. Crofts, of Barforth. We are told, not only that she was in her day one of the best racers in the North of England, but moreover that she was esteemed by her owner to be the very best bred mare in the kingdom. There is not any authentic pedigree of her; but as Mr. Crofts was a devoted admirer of the foreign blood, and their thorough-bred descendants, and as he considered the Old Vintner Mare as his best bred one, we may assuredly conclude that she also was thorough-bred. Partner (foaled in 1718) was the fifth in descent from this mare : hence we assign her to the reign of Charles the Second.
Of nearly the same date was the Oglethorpe Arabian, so called from being the property of General Sir Thomas Oglethorpe, the coloniser of Georgia-a rather celebrated character during a long period of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
This horse apparently covered but very few mares: we are only aware of three of his produce: one a Scotch galloway, pedigree of dam unknown, who was brought to Newmarket and matched for a large sum, carrying a feather weight, against the Duke of Devonshire's Dimple, who at that time held “the Whip,” or Championship, at those celebrated races—the latter carrying 7st. 715. only. The distance they ran is not related, but the Scotch galloway, to the great surprise of the Southrons, was the victor. The fame, however, of the Oglethorpe Arabian rests upon the more secure basis of that of his son Makeless, a capital racer and stallion, belonging also to Mr. Crofts, of Barforth. The pedigree of the đam is unknown. We think we have no reason to doubt that she must have been one of Mr. Crofts' best-bred mares, as the breed of Makeless was reckoned in his time to be of the purest and best blood in the kingdom: for instance, Sir Ralph Milbank's Black Mare,