Marsh, King Edwards Trainer: The Royal Establishment from Which Came Two Derby Winners, Daily Racing Form, 1907-11-09


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MARSH, KING EDWARDS TRAINER. The Royal Establishment from Which Came Two Derby Winners. "King Edward can boast of quite a goodly number of successes on the turf this year, the most recent of these having been gained with his horse Coxcomb, which won the much-prized Welter Han dicap at Dnncaster from a strong field," writes llayden Church in a letter from London under date . of October 24. "The result of this race, which t lio king witnessed, is known to have pleased his majesty greatly, and a day or two afterward he sent for his trainer, Richard Marsh, and congratulated him warmly on the satisfactory showing made by the royal stables. Mt is no use giving you any more plus, said the king. ami. placing a small package in the trainers Jmid. he added, therefore I ask you to accept this as a little souvenir for your wife. "The little souvenir was a handsome enameled brooch, studded with diamonds, and representing a race horse at full gallop with a jockey wearing the royal colors. The incident illustrated both the good nature of the king and his high appreciation of .Marshs services. "Not only is Marsh the trainer of the kings horses, but since the silken jacket of purple and gold Hashed first past the post in all the most important races of the first year of this century, he has been known in England as the king of horse trainers." For purple and gold are the royal racing colors, and Diamond Jubilee, the greatest winner among race horses in any one year, was trained for King Edward VI I. by Marsh. " -Dick Marsh, the great trainer is familiarly called, lie owns the most palatial training establishment in the world. Over it Egerton House, Newmarket blaze the royal arms. There are gathered a hundred bine-blooded race- horses owned by the icing, and some half dozen of the wealthiest noblemen and gentlemen on the British turf. "Marsh lias been a trainer for twenty years, lie-fine that lie was a steeplechase jockey and before that again a jockey on the fiat. Without question lie is a genius in his profession. Carlyle says: Senilis is an infinite capacity for taking pains. It lias been Marshs capacity that has won for him his present enviable iosition in the horse world. ".Since he has been hall-marked by the appointment as the royal trainer, gold has streamed in Marshs direction. Horses he has trained have won races valued at a total of over 2,500,000. The average winnings at Egerton House have been 125,000 Iter year. These stakes have just about paid the owners their expenses, for Marshs annual income from his training establishment alone is 100,000 a year, and it is safe to say that his percentage of winnings and gifts from winning owners foot up to a grand total of between 125,000 and 150,-hio. He can properly claim the position of being the highest-priced trainer in the world. Being a shrewd man, he values his own opinion and backs it. so that with Ids winnings in a good year his annual receipts will about equal a quarter of a million dollars. "ISut Egerton House is an expensive establishment. There is a small army of employes, from stable boys to typewriters in the office. The training quarters make np a small village, with its own shops and school and chapel, which has a surpllced choir of stable lads. There are long Hues ol model stables and inclosures where are quartered troops of thoroughbreds, from uuraced two-year-olds to aged veterans. And there is also a model farm, with many prize cattle, and a stud farm. "The kings trainer looks the typical British gentleman farmer. He is a big, robust man of fifty-five, weighing close on 200 pounds, clean shaven and always faultlessly dressed. He lias a cheery manlier, a hearty hand-grasp and is oue of the most popular men on the British turf. He is treated as a friend rather than as an employe by the king and the many other noble and wealthy patrons of racing. His is a familiar figure at the big races and he ulways has a place" in the royal inclosure and at the -royal luncheon table. ".Marsh has a master mind for horses. This is proved by the fact that he is the most successful race horse trainer of the day. He is a good man of busiuess, too, which is shown by the systematic and orderly way in which his princely establishment is conducted. "The story of his career, never yet fully written, is most interesting. "Ever so many years ago the coast town of Margate held open pony races on the seashore. Mar- . gate, even in those days, was the Atlantic City of England. One day a number .of grammar school l.oy.s fiv.ui neighlioHiig Folkestone went, to sec the luces. An owner, who at the-last uiluule was short n jockey, asked the knot of boys if any of them could ride. A sturdy little chap of thirteen ad- . vauced and said he could. The owner quickly gave him a leg up and that boy and pony won the race. It was Dick Marshs first mount in a race. There was much bargaining to secure the boy as jockey for subsequent races. Marsh rode in five that afternoon and won all of them. He was decidedly the infant prodigy. For his share of the sport he won a gold watch. Urged on by his experience and the tlattery of admirers, he then and there decided to be a jockey. Ills father opposed him, but finally relented on the understanding that Dick would first graduate from the grammar" school in Folkestone. He was horn on December "1, 1S51, at Smeetli in the Garden county of England, Kent. Smeeth is a little hamlet not far from Canterbury. His father was a farmer and hop-grower and owned quite a few horses whicli the boy learned to barebacked. "Itacing in those days was somewhat different to what it is now, but Dick Marsh had no trouble in becoming a jockey. His first public mount as a professional was on a horse named Manrico at Dover. The horse won in a canter by six lengths. Luckily for. Marsh, the late Captain Machell was present and saw the race. Captain Machell Was, in his time, one of the most prominent racing men In England. He took a fancy to Marsh and put him in his own stable. The young jockey rode in all the big races in England, and with much success. He kept adding on weight, however, and was then advised by the late Duke of Hamilton to go into the business of a trainer. "So Marsh rented Lordship Farm, near Newmarket, turned it into training quarters and became a public trainer. He secured the stables of the Duke of Hamilton. Lord Dudley, Lord Hartington, Captain DOrsay and the brothers Baltazzi. "Classical and Important races fell one after another to Marshs horses, and he found, toward the end of the eighties, that Lordship Farm was not big enough. So with the help and advice of his patrons, Egerton House was projected.- Marsh was looking forward when he planned, and the consequence was the erection of the most magnificent training stable in the world. His old patrons moved to the new establishment with him, and there soon followed the horses of Lords William and Marcus Beresford, the Duke of Marlborough, the Earl of Warwick, Lord Wolverton, Lord Charles Montague, uncle of the Duke of Manchester, and Messrs. It. G. lleaton and J. W. Larnacb. "Marsh soon equaled the rccoids of the other great training stables, Manton and Reckhampton, and so on. Very shortly he had passed them and was in the front llight. The horses of the king, then prince of Wales, had not been doing very well, and Lord Marcus Beresford was appointed master of the Royal Racing Stud. He promptly turned all the royal horses, from two-year-olds to aged, over to the care of Marsh, and up weut the royal arms over Egerton House. "Tliis, of course, was a most valuable asset. But, even knowing its full value. Marsh showed himself fearlessly independent. The king had a large string in training and he was somewhat bothered financially. At one time the king owed his trainer 50,-000. Marsh, in those days, charged owners all expenses and fees with a percentage of winnings. He plainly told the king that he wanted his money, for he could not afford to train on credit when he hud scores of cash-paying owners wanting stable room. The king admired Marsh for his independence and thereafter became his stanch friend. The late Baron de Hirsch, it is understood, paid Marshs bill In full, and the king himself afterward paid regularly. "That Marsh has a peculiar aptitude for pleasing his patrons Is shown by a little trick he turned last summer. The king had bred a slashing filly at Sandringham; she was the favorite of the royal princesses and was christened by Princess Victoria after herself. Victoria was entered in an important stake at Sandown on May 31. When Marsh found out that was also to be the wedding day of the queen of Spain, he devoted the most particular pains to getting the filly Victoria into shape. She won the race in a canter, the first race of the season for the king, and at the very hour that his niece became Queen Victoria of Spain. The victory, being such a happy augury,, pleased the royal family immensely, and also the public. "Horses trained by Marsh have time and time again captured practically all the important races in different seasons, but it was not until 1S9G that lie won the blue ribbon of the turf, the Derby. This was also the first Derby that the King won and so it was doubly a triumph. Marsh had first scored that year for the king with the filly Thais in the One Thousand Guineas. Persimmon, his candidate for the Derby, had been previously beaten by Leopold de ltochschllds St. Frusquin and there was the greatest rivalry between the two. St. Frusquin was favorite and Persimmon second in favor. The kings horse was the bigger and Marsh declared his longer stride in the long i race would mean his victory. He was right, for, though St. Frusquin led all the way to the stretch, Persimmons longer stride wore him down and in a tremendous lluish the kings horse won by a short neck. The scene that ensued was one of unparalleled excitement. The king himself led the winner through the cheering crowds to the paddock. Persimmon later won the St. Legcr and the Gold Cup at Ascot, among the big events, for his royal owner."

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