Sidelights on Hermits Derby, Daily Racing Form, 1913-01-22


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• ! i I I I a I ; I « i i j I i 1 i i , | i I t ; t . • i | i i 1 t : i i I I I : i ■ I I I SIDELIGHTS ON HERMITS DERBY. In their political lives the members of the British House of Commons are little given to romaarr. as distinguished from tietinn. and certainly they do not expect the casual BBBMuaceeaeata of private men hers to relate even iibscurely to Incidents nnue 011-siinant With tense drama than with the ordinary 1 affairs Of life. So when an elderly entletnan I white-haired and of bealga and evea bucolic aspect, recently informed the House that be had presented the Royal Veterinary college with the skeletoa ci Hermit, hi mi nable members wen interested m fur i thee than to recall the name of the horse a thai of the winner of the famous "BBOWSt«rsa" Derby if 1 istiT. alter startlag al odds varyiag from 10 to 1 lo t;.". !■ 1 agaiast. The donation was announced in a brief, almost I bald, form of wands ami in tones perhaps exa 1 geratedly Baeaaotlaaal. Vet the speaker must bare been powerfully moved; for laextrtcaMy batarwoven ! with rlie ictniy of Hermit was the story of the I most poignant conflict in his own life. Thai sto y and its episodes are fateful as deck drama, the ele- meats are there complete — mans love and trust. woman s fickleness, conjoined with man- perfhlity. ■ heartless betrayal, and linally. retributive justice resulting in the ruin and untimely death of the be- irayer. The hero of this drama was the Rlghl Hob. a Henry Chaplin, the donor of the skeleton of the famous Derby winner; the villain was the Maripi:- ! •f Hastiags: heroine, this drama had none in the st.-i-,- sense of I ha I term, but the inevitable feminine in the ease was supplied by Lady Florence Panel. Tin- a.tinii began aearly forty years ago. when ! as the attiane.-d bride of Mr. Chaplin. Lady Florence drove with him to Swan and Edgars, a noted rtrj goods emporium in PiccadUly circus. Leaving her betrothed la the store, she walked out through lie . I Begenl Street entrance. A hansom cab was in waiting, lu it was the Marquis of Haatlags. She jumped into the veblcb?, am! together they irove away to be aaietly manhd Three years have elapsed slace this seasa tiomil elopement, and When next the curtain aseeada, the atea* is the famous . l.|isi,ni Downs on the day of the Derby. A BOl iu.i|i 1 pinpiiate setting, ronslderiag the tragic climax, is ■ ftirnlsbed by the weather in the shape of a heavy . -now storm, although it is the end of May. The principals of our play are there. Mr. Chaplin as • , tin- owaer of Hermit, a forlorn looking candidate that was reported to have broken a blood vessel and , that stood shivering in the snow swept paddock without baring had evea a jockey aaalgaed t" bin . Whea the card appeared. The Manpiis of Hastings 1 stands, bettiag bin.k in band, ami animated by a , singular perversity, endeavors to farther triumph , over the man he already eraeily w longed. Lis-cause of all this IH-feeliag, the b.-autiful Mar rbimiess, i- beside her husband. The duel beglas. The Marquis lays thousand after thousand against , Hermil and the horses owner -the discarded lover 1 takes each ln-t as it is offered. The bones go to | the post. Snow continues to fall heavily while 1 lie | thirty competitors face the starter. There are tea • a raise -tarts. The story of the race Itself Is a thrilling one i Pas-in- over the incidents in the earlier part ami i taking the race for the last half mile the descent | to that dangerous point. Tattenham Corner. Vauban. | hoi favorite, was in front, with Wild Moore, , 1. Marksman ami luliu- his Immediate attendants. , Hermit was then fai in the rear, bavins been stead led. It Miik the bend int.. the straight, Julius and The Rake dropped away beaten, and at the , same time Van Amhargb. Corporal. The Palmer ami , Hermil hegaa to. Improve their positions. After , crossing the mad. Marksman ami Van Ambnrgh race I up alongside Vauban. and the three kept , ahead of the rest of tin Held to the distance where , Van Amhurgh snddealy collapsed. Fifty yards far- llier on Mark-man headed Vauban. and quickly jiain- , ing .1 length lead, breasted Ih- slight rise leading [, lo the Wtaaiag pool With the race apparently in hand. Put what was this rommg alaag from he hind: Hermit! the despbml bearer of Mr. Chaplins rose col neii jacket Hermit! agaiaat wh the Mai tpiis of Hastings had fearlessly laid extravagant odd-. Hermit! who oaly ten day- before was on the point of being scratched. Hi- Jockey. Daley, h.i.l received definite unlet- to "wait ami come with one hum run." ami he was carrying out bis instructions to the letter. Was the Impossible to be achieved, after all.- Could Hermil gel np in Hate! l.ik • a tl.i-h In sin. I |.as! the persevering niban. When opposite i In- middle of the enclosure be drew up to Mark-in. in- quarters. He was gaining groaad with ■very snide. Ten yard- from the post h was lev I with Marksman. An lastanl later Hermits bead wa- in front ami whea the goal was reached it was pal;, ill. in all the • lii 111 f. in 11, i.-.l onlookers that the son of Newminster had won the Derby. Tin- re-nil had an iiliuo-t paralyzing effect on t!i" crowd. Tiny could hirdly believe their eye- when they saa Hermits number o up. "Won by a neek." |c im laiined tin- Jadge. Never perhaps did that little word mean so much to so many. To the Manpii- of Haatlags it proved the rnlmin atiag stroke in his disastrous career. Hi- losses were more than tolS.OOO. and in the face of this catastrophe e,-,, the saagfroid of the reckless noble man roald not wholly avail. Notirtag signs of his discomfiture hi- wife came to In- rescue "How ilo -iiii she askeil, |Hishing her betting-book into hit band !•• divert his attention from hi- own dis aster. Ile pulled himself together in an instant. "1 ei llivi lost twenty three pound-" 13 he :, id led, wil m U a tresa r To nay his looses mi this race the aaarqais was ■oiiipeib-d to sell his Scottish estate ..f LaaaVain. S He died shortly afterwanl al the idtifullj earlj age S of twenty-six. ami on his deathbed -aid. "Hermil brake my heart but I didnt -bow i,. did I-" 1 Of unusually handsome nppearaace, be aarcerled ins brother la the aurqalaatc when only nineteen l i . i ■ year- of aye ami al -I immediately beyau lo ilalilile in the affair- ,.| be lull. lie did BOl kmg datible. inn -ion plunged headlong Into the vm Knjoyiag a handsome income from his estates, he spem il live tunes ..ver and relied II|MM his la.ii.. ventures to make good the deficit. The blow ill dieted by the victory of Hermil and of hi- owaer. Whom a year or two previously be had deeply wronged and had since farther sought lo humble, constituted the retributive climax lo Lord Hastiags misfortunes. The fascinating caaae of this fead. Lady Florence Paget, was -" beaatifal thai she roald hardly ven inn- out of door- without being beset by atlmirins; crowds. Known a- the "Fockel Venus" and a-Latiyhiiil." she was like a fairy, so dainty was her ixipii-itcly proportioned figure, which famished a striking contrast with bee constant companion. Lady Mim-hi-ea. her half-sister, who was tall and if magnificent physlqne. Shortly after the death of the Maraala of Has tin-. bis widow marrieil Sir Seorge Chetwynd. a well known sportsman, ami apparently lived happily with him until her death in;. Tin third personalltj iii this remarkable story, Henry Chaplin, was, or rather is for al the pros enl li In- is th, oldest llvlag owner of a Derby winner a member of oa* of the besl known rami lies in Lincolnshire. Horn in 1840, he nacceeded to bis ancles estates in 1800. On leaving Oxford be accompanied sir Frederick Jobnatoae oa a baat-InMtOBT In Northern India, bat returning to Bug land, hegaa his long and honorable aaaoeiatioa with the turf in 1883 by baying Breadarhane, Broomie law ami Hermit. Like many others who had Kniie lieleti him lie had therefore a full mea-ure of "novice luck." In alter life he owaed many aaad horses, but his success in the "classic" ran- began and ended with Hermit. During the next quarter of a century, so lar a- the turf was concerned, be gained fame rhleay a- ■ breeder, ami the Blaakaey Stud was for many years one of the leading e-tab li-hincnts of its kind in the world. Politics and agncultnrr gradeally absorbed mora ami more of ids time and eaergies, aud since tlie death of Hermit Mini of QalOBht, his intere-t in racing has beta that of an onlooker and an honored member of the hierarchy of the turf. From November. 1888, ii November, 1885, he represented mid LiacolBshir • in the House of Commons, and since tin- la-i named date the Sleaford division of Lincolnshire. He i- a prominent conservative, a frequent debater and an authority on agricultural matters. In 1888 be was appointed president of the newly created Board of Agriculture with a seat in the cabinet. He wa-deeplj in lev. with the beaatifal Lady Florence Paget, ami it took him twelve years to recover from tin- effects of her faitlilulnes-. In 1876 he married Lady Florence Leveaon-Gower, daughter of the Duke of Sutherland. She died in 1881. A Bathetic reminder of the tragedy is now to be -i en in a narrow room in tin- Royal Veterinary college, North London. Lookiag at this grotesque arrangement of bones it is almost Impossible to eon eive that they once were the frame of the deux ex ma -hina in an abeorbiag drama. The skeleton is not n-eii for demonstration par poses and is kept merely a- an Object of Interest. In the summer it is viewed by hundreds of visitor-, aaaaag whom are many American-

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