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GOSSIP OF THE TURF. "Good mare that she is known to be, the easy manner in which Witfull won the Crescent City Handicap seems to have occasioned great surprise among the majority of horsemen," says the Picayune of Dec. 21. "It was not that her winning was not looked for, nor that there was anything like a question of her ability to take up 114 pounds and run a mile and a quarter in fast time, but it was in the manner of doing it that the Hildreth mare upset the mental balance of the men who profess to know just what every horse with which they are familiar is capable of doing. As a matter of fact, Witfull did not have the universal support of the wise crowd. Her recent defeat by Ben Chance, together with the fact that it was thought she might show to better advantage over a heavy track, caused the belief that she was not to be considered as anything like a standing out favorite. It was probably due to the fact that Fuller had the mount that so short a price was quoted against her. for paddock talk indicated that the winner must be looked for from some other quarter. The manner in which Fuller entered into his work in this instance of his reappearance was most pleasing. That the jockey has improved even over the excellent form of last winter here, cannot be doubted. He comes back with as brilliant a reputation as ever held to the name of a jockey, and in addition to this he has a superb confidence in his own abilities, as well as a proper regard, or disregard, for the jockey company with whom he will meet, and altogether is in condition to give us innumerable exhibitions of what real horsemanship is like. He looks heavy, but his manager, Archie Zimmer, says the boy will be riding at 105 pounds within a day or two, and at this weight he will have no trouble in getting the mounts he feels like accepting." Henry M. Ziegler and trainer Charles Hughes left Cincinnati last Monday for Lexington, to have a look at the Ziegler yearlings, which are at Highland Farm. There are nine colts and two fillies, and trainer Hughes is satisfied that he has more than one "real runner" in the outfit. Mr. Ziegler will return to Cincinnati at once, while trainer Hughes will go to New Orleans, to remain until about the middle of February. Totness, Lady Lavish and another of the Ziegler two-year-olds now at New Orleans will be raced there the remainder of the winter. The colts Wayfarer and Don John are at the Lexington farm. Trainer Hughes says they have both grown. He says that Don John is a Derby horse and that if he stays right he will be hard to beat. Word comes from New Orleans that Archie Zimmer, who trains for T. D. Sullivan of New York has made up his mind to race his stable in St. Louis next season. He says that he will send a horse to the Mound City next spring that will beat anything in training there. Zimmer has reference to Old Ireland, formerly Old England. This horse used to race in the colors of the veteran trainer Green B. Morris. Senator Sullivan bought Old England from Green Morris and paid 00 to change the horses name. Zimmer says that Old Ireland will win the 0,000 Worlds Fair Handicap, the Inaugural, Club Members Handicap and every other big stake -offered by the St Louis race tracks in 1904.