Glories of Old Rancocas: Famous Farm in New Jersey Now Owned by Sinclair-Hildreth, Daily Racing Form, 1922-12-12


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GLORIES OF OLD RANCOCAS Famous Farm in New Jersey Now-Owned by Sinclair-Hildreth. Xoblc Establishment Founded by Pierre Lorillard, Which Produced Iroquois, Parole and Other Great Horses. a It certainly was a stroke of good fortune for Harry M. Sinclair and Samuel C. Hil-dreth when they secured the famous old Ran-cocas Stud Farm in New Jersey and adopted that name for their racing stable, for it appears as if all the good luck and fame that was associated with the old place and the noted horses of its founder, the late Pierre Lorillard, has been handed down to the present-day owners. For the second year in succession since the Sinclair-Hildreth confederacy has raced under the Rancocas Stable it has won the premier honors of the American turf, finishing at the top of the ! winning owners list in 1921 and 1922. Of interest then is the following account of the early days at Rancocas Farm by Dr. Oliver C. Farley, the veterinarian, who for a number of years had charge of the thoroughbreds when it was one of the largest breeding establishments in the country. That was in the good old racing days when Iroquois went across from Rancocas to win the Epsom Derby and Parole to win the Newmarket Handicap, City and Suburban and Epsom Gold Cup. "I dont believe there will ever be such another stock farm as Rancocas, the old Pierre Lorillard place at Jobstown, N. J., was in the early eighties," said Dr. Farley. "Just as there was no other farm quite like Rancocas, in my opinion there was no other sportsman as remarkable as Pierre Lorillard," Dr. Farley continued. "Lorillard was not only lavish in his expenditures of money on sport, especially racing, but he took an active part himself. "He was a great whip, an excellent shot with rifle or shotgun and an expert boxer. To see him tooling with his four-in-hand in and out of crowded streets, was a sight that always called forth admiration. He was a thorough, true sportsman and would bet with the bookmakers when his horse was entered in a race as long as they would take the money. He would usually bet 0,000 at a time. "Although he was fond of betting on his horses he believed in obeying the letter of the law. When Pontiac won the second Suburban at Sheepshead Bay, I remember, the Percy-Gray law had just gone into effect prohibiting betting. Although the price against Pontiac was a good one Mr. Lorillard refused to bet on his horse in violation of the law. Not only that, but he ordered all the stable employes not to bet, on pain of discharge. RANCOCAS A SPLENDID HOME. "Rancocas was Lorillards great diversion from the cares of business. It was not merely a stud for the breeding of fine horses. Registered cattle and hogs were bred there, and part of the place was used as a game preserve, where deer were brought from Germany, English pheasants and red English hare might be hunted. There was a fish pond stocked with carp and terrapin. "A dog kennel run on English lines by Percy Ohl was a feature of the place. There was a stable of Shetland ponies. Rancocas was 1.S00 acres in extent and had a track seven-eighths of a mile long for training. On each side of the track the length of the stretch were flower beds, where beautiful blooms grew in the warm months. "In the early 80s there were about 100 brood mares at Rancocas. Saxon was the head of the stud until displaced by services from the great Leamington, which was brought over by Sir Roderick Cameron, who for a ieng time had a big place on Staton Continued on twelfth page. GLORIES OF OLD RANCOCAS Continued from first page. Island. Leamingtons line is bred out and forgotten now, I guess, but his progeny at Rancocas were highly successful, including Parole, one of the greatest handicap horses ever bred in America. "Iroquois was bred by Aristides Welch at Erdenheim, Pa., and bought by Mr. Loril-lard as a yearling, and so was not a prodjuet of the farm at .Tobstown. He was never the horse that Parole was, in my opinion. This was in the heyday of the Lorillard stables, and the cherry and black colors often came through in front. It was Mr. Lorillards habit when he won a big race to tip the jockey and trainer 00 each. This was his favorite tip. and he usually gave it to any of his employes he thought had done particularly good work. GREAT HORSES IX LORILLARD COLORS. "Pontiac, Comanche, Iroquois, Parole. Duke of Magenta, Glenlyon and others carried the Rancocas colors to victory. Charles Little-field, father of Fred and Nelse, had come down from Canada to train them, and we all lived at Rancocas except when actually racing. One year the progeny of Leamington there numbered fifteen yearlings, all of which raced well afterward. "It was a great stable, and I remember at the time the success of Rancocas horses was attributed to the fact that they were bred under glass. This was true, in a way of speaking, for a big glass barn was built there, where the foals and yearlings could be exercised in the sun in the coldest weather. That was the only horse greenhouse I ever saw. It may have contributed to their success on the track. "Of all the horses in that famous string I think Parole was the one the trainers, jockeys and even Mr. Lorillard himself liked best. Parole was a human sort of horse. Littlefield used to say he knew more than many men he could mention. "Parole, for a thoroughbred racer, was not as much on looks as some of the others. When we arrived in England he had a somewhat shaggy coat, and when the English horsemen saw him they laughed at the idea of his accomplishing anything against English horses. Some of them even dubbed him the Yankee mule. "Well, we all kept quiet and tuned Parole up for the Newmarket Handicap, one of the big fixtures that was soon to be run. We knew he was good. It was a great day, I remember, when all was ready for the race and the six starters were at the post. I can remember seeing old McGeorge, the famous starter, out there with his flag and with no barrier to bother him. HOW THE "YANKEE MULE" WON. "Isonomy, the great English horse, was the favorite. None of the Britishers gave a thought to Parole, which was the outsider at 100 to 15. We bet all the money we could beg, borrow or steal, as the saying goes, but the English bookies only laughed at such foolishness and did not lower the odds. That was a favorite price for an outsider on the English tracks. "When th?y got away the cherry and black could not be seen anywhere. We had a little English boy named Morbey on Parole and decided we would all be broke for the next few weeks. When they hit the" stretch Isonomy was in the lead by several lengths. The crowd yelled with glee and it looked as if the favorite couldnt lose unless he fell down. "Suddenly a brown streak shot out of the bunch and closed up on the favorite like lightning. The great crowd gasped. It was Parole, the Yankee mule, making one of his famous finishes. Morbey was riding the Rancocas gelding like a veteran jockey. He did not go to the whip, however ; Parole did not need that. "They hooked up 300 yards from home and in one of the most grueling finishes ever seen on that historic course Parole trimmed the English champion. We roared and raved as they were coming down the stretch and after the race found we had won so much money we didnt bother to collect all of it. "The English bookies never laughed at the Yankee male again."

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