Stamina In American Horses., Daily Racing Form, 1913-04-18


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STAMINA IN AMERICAN HORSES W S Vosbtirgh handlcapper for the Jockey Club bns contributed the following letter to the Thor ¬ oughbred Record The failure of the American bred horses to stay lias been a frequent subject of the English turfwritcrs especially within the last two or three seasons when so many Americanbred yearlings were offered in the English sales rings ringsCertainly Certainly those who are interested in selling liomehred stock cannot be expected to view with favor the appearance in the market of a foreign competitor Indeed efforts have been made to ex ¬ clude American horses from the Stud Book But it would Ixr unfair to say that all English writers who have written of the alleged failure to stay were inllucnccd by personal considerations for many of them are neither themselves breeders nor inter ¬ ested in newspai crs which are used to exploit cer ¬ tain holdings of thoroughbred stock stockIt It seems likely then that such as are disin ¬ terested believe what they write or that they Lave fallen in with the repeated statements of the Interested writers for any statement long acquiesced in often becomes accepted as a belief owing to lack of contradiction or indifference and as most people are indisposed to think for them ¬ selves they adopt the statements of those more positive than themselves themselvesIf If the Americanbred race horse cannot stayit Js well we should know it and correct it instead of disputing it anil if it is a fact to consider the cause of it Now the sires imi orted from England to this country from 1830 to 1840 were among the best in England Priam Barefoot Glencoe Mai grane Trustee Albion Alnderby etc to which most of our horses trace Of those imported within the past forty years we cannot say as much Most of them were cheap horses and loo many of them were roarers Roaring is not always hereditary but often is Roaring is not as common hero as in England we have a better climate but since the advent of those roaring English sires we have more roarers than we hud forty years ago agoIt It is a frequent claim of some English writers that our horses are nut thoroughbred owing to inability to trace some one or two strains in their pedigrees to the English Stud Book Hence they assume that tho horses traee to coldblooded sources There i no evidence that they do except in one or two cases such as that of Amerlens which traces to Potomac which horse our Stud Book states traces to a cart mure Singularly enough Ameriens has succeeded bolter than all other American sires In England In the other eases the niisxing link is oftii due to lire war or loss of records It is fair to believe the horses were thoroughbred as the planters of Maryland Virginia and the Carolinas were gentlemen too keen on Ilk subject to breed or race other than pure bred stock while quarterracing was a distinct snort snortThere There is reason to believe that horses mature earlier hi most lyirts of the Unlted Slates than they do in England It may ln due to climate the food or the bundling Itlit It Is a fact recognized by many wrilerti The lute Mr Pierre Iorillards Democrat and Caiman particularly have been cited Both were brilliant twoyearolds each winning the Middle Park Plate and while Caiman survived long enough to finish second to Flying Fox for the St Legcr both he and Democrat failed to carry out their early promise Horses which mature so early scldqin improve with age and when later they are beaten by those whose development was slower it is not always proof that they have deteriorated but remained stationary while the others hnd Improved and could maintain their speed over a longer distance distanceThere There is also reason to believe that the Amer ¬ ican system of trainmg has become more suited to the devclopinent of early maturity and sprinting than staying It is natural that it should as we have so few races requiring staying powers Thirty or forty years ago tour horses were fitted for special engagements requiring longer preparation and have seen them galloped under clothes and then scraped But in recent years they were required to race so often that the old method would not answer Ins 9ad of taking off llesh trainers labored to kei p it on Of course a horse run big may show more dash and speed but he cannot stay An America trainer in England told us he was amazed at the severe galloping the English trainers gave their horses but whether the milder American system is responsible for the alleged failuce of our horses to stay it is dillicult to determine determinePossibly Possibly within the last twenty years or mire American horses have been bred with too much re ¬ gard for twoyearold racing The success of the Futurity led the racing clubs to put the greatest value in the events for twoyearolds they produced a larger entry larger fields The threeyearold stakes after June when the colts had established their class dwindled to nothing and for autumn meetings were abandoned To win a Futurity a Matron a Great Trial a Trcmont or a Hopeful became the aim of most owners The colt winning some of these was the leading money winner of the year Colin for example in 107 won over 130 000 The winner of the Futurity has alone placed bis sire at the bead of the winning sires of the year yearAccordingly Accordingly it became a common thing for the crack twoyearolds to start from ten to twenty times In a season and the others from twenty to thirty The effect of this has been noticed in the falling pit of the number of older horses in the stake races In the threeyearold events it was dillicult to bring a fair number to the post while the weightforage races for all ages were won by threeyearolds or became little better than walk ¬ overs and often the latter Racing became reduced to three sorts twoyearold races selling races and handicaps Up to 1901 it had become a proverb that a threeyearold could not win the Brooklyn or Suburban but since then four of them have won the Brooklyn and two the Suburban Our horses had become used to racing as colts and either broke down or lost their nervous force from overdoing overdoingThe The increased value of events for twoyearolds caused a demand for the get of such sires whose colts came to hand early and the breeder whose stallion did not impart that quality had to be con ¬ tent with low prices or seek a sire of the early ma ¬ turity sort Aside from tho stakes the overnight sweepstakes for twoyearolds grew steadily And with good reason they filled better produced larger fields as there were always more untried twoyear olds than any other class Again American owners with few exceptions want immediate results they want their horses 4o pay expenses and have little idea of keeping a colt over until he is three as Mr IAnson did Blair Atbol Mr Merry did Doncaster Baron Rothschild did Favonlus or as Mr Belmont did TraceryBefore Tracery Before racing was suspended In New York several stables did little racing except with twoyearolds Toward the close of the season they would sell their colts by private sale or public auction They had no further use for colts or fillies which had won some of the most valuable stakes of the year their form was exposed they had incurred penalties of weight for future engagements and it would be impossible to got good odds against them There was no profit In horses after two years old let somebody else have them they would never sell so well as then when their reputation was perhaps higher than it would ever be The expense was saved of carrying them over the winter and transferring their engagements saved a possible load of for ¬ feits in stakes of small value compared with two yearold events Consequently the twoyearolds were sold for high prices which with their winnings made them altogether profitable Then the stable was ready to begin the next season with another a fresh crop of twoyearolds to which the trainer could give bis undivided attention and the history of the previous year was repeated a new slate uuexposcd colts good odds valuable stakes reputations established ending with another sale in the ensuing autumn and the third batch of yearlings taken up and tried for the twoyearold campaign of the following 3ear 3earNo No doubt a colt is better for having raced at two years old unless he be one of the overgrown kind It is the abuse of twoyearolds by over ¬ working them that is to be condemned So long as the stakes for twoyearolds are made so valuable owners will not resist the temptation to start them On the other hand It would be considered bad poli ¬ tics to reduce the value of these stakes as to do so would reduce the selling value of yearlings nt least forty per cent owing to its diminishing the earning capacity twoyearoldsWe of twoyearolds We have always considered it possible that the English horses were as a class superior to ours especially since we have bred to so many inferior English sires while the English bred from the most highly tried horses Moreover their method of n cing over hills and descents and over straightaway courses Is a better test than the American deal level and circular courses afford Tho English courses better test the wind limb and heart Many a horse that can stay a mile over a circular course cannor do so over a straightaway the pace finds him out Besides a horse with bad shoulders can win over level courses but a hill is fatal to him The Eng lish horse is bred from generations of horses which have raced over courses up hill and down and should have better shoiilders than our horses horsesBut But we are reluctant to bollcje that American horses are as poor stayers as alleged by the English writers with whom to judge from the weights allotted the English handicappers seem to disagree Ilandicappors are liable to mistake while it is sel ¬ dom admitted that journalists ever are Some high class race horses have raced here and of the few we have sent to England against enormous odds in re ¬ spect to numbers our horses have won the Derby the St Leger twice the Oaks the Two and the One Thousand Guineas and other classic events eventsIt It seems difficult for English journalists to be ¬ lieve that anything good can come from America They ridiculed our jockeys and the American seat yet tho American jockey is In demand and the seat generally adopted If an American horse shows form they deny his right to be considered American if his sire or dam happen to be English One of them some time ago refused to consider Danny Mailer an American because his father was Irish forgetting that Englands King Edward VII could by that test be disqualified as an Englishman he cause bis father was a German GermanReally Really we often doubt if international contests are any help to the gaiety of nations or to good feeling between them Our English cousins have many qualities which we admire and fain would Imi ¬ tate But they have so long enjoyed preeminence in sports that they do not take kindlr to competition although they think they do No doubt in their place wo would feel as they do for after all human worldBecause nature is the same all over the world Because our Sloans Mahers Martins Reins and ONeills have rather shattered the school of riding that Chifney Jackson and Buckle founded and Fordhain Archer and Osborr improved it does not follow that we have nothing o leam from England We have borrowed freely from her language liter ¬ ature laws In return we have given her only jockeys and heiresses Oh wiseAnd may we copy all her maxims wise And imitate her virtues and her charities And acclimatizeHer may we by degrees acclimatize Her journalistic 7 eculiarities By doing so we shall in course of time timeRegenerate Regenerate completely our entire land Great sublimeTo Britain is that monarchy sublime To which some add but others do not Ire ¬ land

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