History of American Thoroughbred, Daily Racing Form, 1922-12-26


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History of American Thoroughbred Thirtieth Installment, Thus we find that in the former year there were ICS and in the latter 232 winners, the progeny of an equal number of horses. Surely this affords an argument in favor of the stoutness and constitution of the horse of 1S50. It was not an easy matter at the time this was Avritten to obtain full statistics of this nature, owing to the vast extent of territory over which the race meetings were scattered and the great number of courses and jockey clubs existing, all independent of each other, which made it a matter of toil to hunt up the winners sired by any particular stallion or number of stallions. I have been so fortunate, howecr, to fall upon the following facts concerning Medoc, a horse of fair and honest, though not first-rate, running reputation in America in 1S33. Medoc begot in 1S3S, 1830 and 1840, respectively eighteen, forty-eight and forty-nine Avinners, at all distances, from one to four-mile heats. In the latter year thirty-three of his progeny won sixty-four races, a total distance of 300 miles, to win 6,000. But to return to Cecils observations on the comparative stoutness of ancient and modern English racers. In the first portion of these remarks, he proceeds, it was mentioned that an opinion has been promulgated Avitli much industry and supported with equivalent zeal that our horses have degenerated compared Avith those of our ancestors in stoutness or endurance in running a distance ; that they are incapable of bearing fatigue ; that they are deficient in constitutional stamina, the ability to carry weight, and that they are subject to hereditary diseases, especially roaring. In cAtdence of these arguments the performances of tAVo horses, Avorthies of ancient date, the one called Black Chance, the other the Carlisle gelding, hae been extolled in the Avarmest terms. To arrive at correct conclusions, the most satisfactory course Avill be that of making comparisons, from indisputable data, between the performances of the horses said to ha-e possessed superiority OAer their descendants. The mere declaration of opinion, unaccompanied by prooof, is not sufficient on this occasion. For the sake of brevity and to render each item capable of ready comparison a tabular form is chosen in which the performances of the most celebrated horse of the early part of the eighteenth century are placed in juxtaposition Avitli an equal number of more recent date. The selection of the Carlisle gelding and Black Chance is suggested in consequence of their having been brought forward as specimens of superiority over any horse of the middle of the nineteenth, century. LATE II HORSES HATE ADVANTAGE. It will he seen by the table alluded to that the horses of the later age haAe the advantage in every respect. They began to train from two to four years younger; they ran more racea and more miles and they saw more years service on the turf than the worthies of the olden time. KSSH a K K f Ss i i - s-s s n band ?5 I 5 s L s!:3 5 5" Zfl : : P 1 ? : s ag : : : : : - : : : 2 : CMisle Gelding 5 2S 9 31 100 03 228 13 1731 Cinderwench . 18 9 22 OS 94 192 C 1735 Black Chance. 5 1 5 30 172 40 212 10 171G A. OBradiey. 5 35 30 25 312 72 3S4 4 1749 1 ItalH-almin ... 1 4 i 10 30 38 74 4 1749 fiHphratea ... 3 42.17 09 1531 154 J 3084 10 1S23 Listen 3 40 3ft 81 1401 013 232 11 1S34 Independence 2 40 44 84 01 895 1851 10 1835 i Venison 2 lfi B 21 ft! 91 001 3 1S37 Cotheriiia .... 2 70 0 177 300 2S3 583 10 1841 Unknown. , Persons convarsant with racing are well aware that it is impossible to form decided opinions concerning tho superiority of horses without running them in public or trying , them In private. As it is impossible to form positive opinions of contemporaneous horses until they have been tried, it would be ridiculous , to hazard an opinion on the merits of horses in a race of any given distance of the , early part of tho eighteenth century as compared with those of the middle of the nineteenth . century unless there appeared to be a L vast disparity between them. NO DATA ON HEREDITARY DISEASES. Considering the points at issue there is no difficulty in deciding on the majority of those qualities which give evidence of stoutness, .endurance, constitutional stamina and capability of bearing fatigue. As to hereditary diseases we have no data whatever upon which any opinion can be formed. The arguments which have heon brought forward In favor of horses of the eighteenth century, with the Carlisle gelding and Black Chance as examples, require some little detail to confute. It has keen asserted that the former had 1 i , , , , . L no rival in carrying all degrees of weights, in supporting heats, traveling and constantly running, and this maintained to an age seldom heard of. In searching the calendars for the purposo of forming tables of performances it was found that this horse ran on several occasions for selling stakes at prices A-arying from 00 to 1100. This would indicate that his A-alue was not highly estimated. Many persons who are under the impression that selling stakes are modern inventions Avill be surprised to learn that they were in effect in the early part of the eighteenth century. CARRIED LIGHT "WEIGHT. On four occasions only this horse carried 16S pounds. In a general way he carried light weights, A-arying from 112 to 117 pounds. Thirteen of his engagements were matches and all racing men know full well that winning matches depends mone on the judgment of the matchmaker than the intrinsic goodness of the horse. An animal that has been often beaten cannot Avith propriety be aggrandized with the title of "unrivaled." The eulogist of the Carlisle gelding has been equally ardent in admiration of Black Chance, concerning which he falls into greater discrepancies, Avhich are not worthy of enumeration, with the exception of one mistake. Among other races won in 1740 is included one at Oswestry, where he is stated to have carried 182 pounds. There is no record in the Racing Calendar of his ever carrying more than 16S pounds. He more frequently ran Avith 140 pounds and sometimes with only 12G pounds. Arthur OBradiey Avon as many plates as almost any other horse ever did, at both high and low Aveights, and may be justly said to be the best horse of his time. He Is therefore a fit subject .for comparison. AVhen his performances are placed against those of Euphrates, Liston and Independence they fall into the shade. Babraham is introduced more in consequence of his subsequent worth in the stud than for his performance on tho turf. In the former capacity he was far distinguished aboA-e the average of his contemporaries. This also serves as an example that a horse, having won a great number of races, is not invariably the most successful in his progeny. A horse that has Avon a moderate number of race, beating known good ones, is generally the most eligible to breed from. AN OLD BELIEF. It was generally considered in the eighteenth century that training horses at so early an age as two or eAen three years old Avas injurious to them ; that their joints and sinews, Avanting maturity, suffered and gave way, and that consequently their racing career Avas abbreviated. The means at that time adopted with foals, from their infancy, were calculated to obviate the effects of early training. The food which they and their dams Avere furnished Avas gauged to produce early development. The impression that early training shortens a horses racing career loses ground on reference to the table already given, which shoAvs that out of five horses of the middle of the nineteenth century three commenced their running at tAVO years old and the others at three. Their continuance on the turf fully equals that of their ancestors, with the exception of Venison, Avhose three-year-old performances Avere so superlatively excellent as to render him Avorthy of especial notice. At that age he Avon twelve races, many of them at long distances, including five Kings Plates. Vans and railways net being In Aogue, he traAeled on foot 900 miles in the course of the year to perform his engage-i ments. He ran third to Bay Middleton and Gladiator for the English Derby and I per-! fectly remember the remark made by his trainer, John Day, on the morning preAious to the race. "I haAe a good horse," said he, "and it must be an exceptionally good one to beat him." Although Bay Middleton proved himself a better horse on that occasion, the subsequent running of Venison thoroughly justified tho estimate of his trainer. In the stud he at- tained still greater eminence. He Avas the sire of Alarm, Cariboo, Ugly Buck, Vatican, Buckthorn, Kingston, Joe Miller, Ticton and others of good repute. In his running he evinced the most indom- itable stoutness of constitution ; inestimable qualities Avhich he transmitted to his stock. He died in December, 1852, Avhen twenty years old. To Bo Continued.

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Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800