Major Belmonts First of Year: Fine Fair Play Colt Messenger Wins the Grab Bag Handicap for Him in Fast Time and in a Canter, with Dust Flower Second, Daily Racing Form, 1922-08-17


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MAJOR BELMONT9 S FIRST OF YEAR FINE FAIR PLAY COLT MESSENGER VINS THE GRAB BAG HANDICAP FOR HIM IN FAST TIME AND IN A CANTER, WITH DUST FLOWER SECOND SARATOGA SPRINGS, N. Y., August 1G. August Belmonts Messenger, a handsome big son of Fair Play and Mission, was the winner of the Grab Bag Handicap, and his j success was the first triumph of the year for the chairman of the Jockey Club. The Belmont silks were not shown until this month, when the same colt was third in the running of the Flash Stakes behind Dust Flower and Cartoonist. In the Grab Bag Messenger wiped out that defeat by beating Dust Flower easily, while others back of him were Donges, McKee, Runelise, Dan E. OSullivan, Certain, Doughoregan, Prince Regent, Spot Cash, Mark Twain and Metric. Messenger carried 117 pounds, began from an outside position and raced past his opponents in the stretch like a real champion. He was in receipt of weight from McKee, Donges, Dust Flower and Runelise, but was conceding weight to all the others and the character of his victory suggested that he is well able to concede more weight. The race was worth ,150 to the winner. The racing, apart from the fouling in the third race, was first class and there was another crowd of goodly number on hand. The going was fast and for the most part the finishes were close enough to Dring real thrills. THIRTEEN STARTERS I" HANDICAP. There were thirteen went to the post for the Grab Bag Handicap and little time was I lost at the barrier, starter Cassidy sending them away in excellent alignment. Messenger was away in front, but he was outrun for the first eighth by Runelise, though ne held second place in front of Donges. Spot Cash, the Whitney starter, was "fourth, with McKee just showing the way to Dust Flower. Runelise, showing much of the speed of her illustrious orother Morvich, held to the lead to the stretch, but here Messenger began to draw up on her with sweeping strides that soon saw him in front. Once out there Johnson crossed to the rail and at the end the handsome oig fellow just cantered along to win by a full fi-e lengths. Dust Flower had been in rather close quarters in the early running, hut finished fast when she fougi.t her way through to beat Donges for second place by a half length. Donges ran a fine race and did not have fu.i racing room. McKee was just a bit slow in leaving the post and Sande could not find clear sailing for him when the stretch was reached, though he was closing m the outside to finish a close fourth. Montfort Jones Rockminister had to stand a long drive to get home winner of the Tico.i-ueroga, a purse race in which he took the measure of another Kentucky horse in Bit o Black, while Violinist saved third money from Cap Rock. Irish Brigadier set the pace fast. McAtee sent him away from the post quickly and he was soon in a clear lead. Violinist raced in second place and Cap Rock was heading the others. Rockminister wis slow at the start and Garner had to rouse him sharply with the whip in the backstretch to make him run. Irish Brigadier continued to show the way almost to the stretch, where lie began to tire and both Violinist and Cap Rock loomed up dangerously. But all he time Rockminister, under a most energetic ride, was gaining on the outside and at the eighth post was finally showing the way. From there he drew away and won by two and a half lengths. Bit o Black finished resolutely and beat Violinist a lensth. Irish Brigadier quit all over in the last eighth and was four lengths back of Cap Rock. Kay Spence and Mack Garner made it a double for Montfort Jones when he sent Surf Rider to the post for the Watervliet- Purse, a condiiton race. The son of Superman showed a return to good form and it is possible that both were helped somewhat in their winning way when Spence added blinkers to the colts equipment. Smoke Screen, as was to be expected, set the pace and Kcogh permitted him to steal away into a good lead. Garner had Surf Rider in second place and there was daylight back of him, with Firm Friend well in front of the good filly Thimble, the lightweight of the field. When leaving the backstretch Sande made a move with Firm Friend and he raced up alongside of Surf Rider, but Garner was sitting still on the Jones three-year-old and riding a wonderfully confident race, though Smoke Screen was still well clear. Before the eighth post was reached Garner shook up Surf Rider and he rushed to Smcke Screen quickly. Firm Friend tired badly when he was called on, but Thimble responded to the call of Thomas and moved up rapidly on the inside. Through the last eighth Surf Rider drew away to win by four lengths and then Thimble, in a game finish, beat Smoke Screen a head for second place. For an opening race, the offering was a seven-eighths selling handicap and in at rattling finish Walter M. Jeffords Routledge got up to win from Wellfinder, with Mus-kallonge a close third, in front of Mercury. Muskallonse and Wellfinder cut out the running, while Mercury raced along under slight restraint back of them. Shortly after turning out of the backstretch Wellfinder on the outside headed Muskallonce and for an instant seemed the winner. Mercury was unable to improve his position and Routledge was so far back that he was not seriously considered. Swinging for home Muskallonge came again and an eighth from home he had Wellfinder headed, but it was only for a few 1 strides, when Wellfinder came again. But in the meantime Morris was bringing Routledge along with a great rush on the outside and he got up in time to win drawing away by a half length. Wellfinder only beat Muskallonge a head for second place and Mercury was three lengths farther away. TWO DISQUALIFIED I" THIRD RACE. There was a double disqualification in the third race when both Rebuke and Leghorn, which finished first and second, were thrown out and Frederick Johnsons Excelsis,. which finished third was placed first, with Double Cross second and Overtake third. This all came from a jockey fight in the stretch between Kelsay, who rode Rebuke, and Carroll, who had the mount on Leghorn. Leghorn had made the early pace, but Rebuke wrested the lead from her while coming through on the inside. Then in the stretch the filly came again and, just as she appeared to be passing Rebuke and the pair were closely locked she hung and Carroll was seen to try to strike Kelsay, who seemed to have hold of the Carroll mounts bridle. After the finish Carroll lodged a claim of foul and both boys were questioned at length. Finally it was decided they were equally guilty and the action followed that disqualified both. Excelsis, which took first money by the disqualification, was three and a half lengths back of the two which finished only heads apart, while Double Cross was a full ten lengths farther back, with Overtake another ten lengths away. It was apparent that Kelsay had fouled Leghorn and Carroll made the mistake of fighting back instead of depending on his claim of foul. After the ruling, Joseph E. Widener, one of the stewards, said that each rider had accused the other of leg locking and that it was riding that would not be tolerated. Both riders were suspended for the rest of the meeting. Some thought there was every reason for a second disqualification in the running of the five and a half furlongs at the end of the card, when Garner brought D. W. Scotts Great Luck home winner from Moonrakcr and Boys Believe Me. Inside the last eighth Great Luck swerved over on Boys Believe Me until Wilson was forced to pull up sharply and at a time when he had a first-class chance to win. No claim was made by Wilson and the stewards did not call any riders into the stand.

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