More Spirited Sport: Havana Racegoers Again Witness some Close Finishes, Daily Racing Form, 1924-01-06


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MORE SPIRITED SPORT Havana Racegoers Again Witness Some Close Finishes. First Four Horses in Third Race Separated by Smallest of Margins Pickens Double. - HAVANA, Cuba, Jan. 5. Close finishes again marked the racing at Oriental Park, which was witnessed by the usual large Saturday crowd. The first of tho nip and tuck finishes came in the second race when the six-year-old Ben " Bolt, that races for Harned Bros. and Jones, beat P. T. Barnum by a head. The latter had set a great pace from the start and appeared an easy winner entering the stretch. However, at the eighth post he swerved out badly and Ben Bolt, under Pickens vigorous riding, squeezed in on the inside and in a terrific last eighth drive got his head in front just as the pair crossed the winning line. The spectators had scarcely got over tho excitement of that hair-raising finish when in the following race an ever more thrilling finale sent them almost into hysterics. At the end of this contest the proverbial blanket would have covered the first four. There was little to indicate that such a finish would result when Somerby rushed away into a big lead soon after the start. When he continued to hold it as the stretch was reached it looked all over like an easy victory for the favorite. However, in a twinkling the picture Avas changed. Somerby tired suddenly and then nearly all the other contestants charged at the same time and they came thundering through the last eighth and it was anybodys race. On they came and as they dashed past the judges they alone Avere able to separate them. Kirk Dress being awarded first place by a head, Teasa second by a neck, Babbling third a head in front of Clinging Vine, with the crowd on ita feet cheering wildly until the horse3 returned to the scales. The sport opened with a dash of three-quarters, which was contested by twelve platers of ordinary caliber. A iirst-timo starter, Some Pumpkins, the property of J. T. Gwathmey, essayed to set the pace, but after briefly showing the way, retired in favor of Dangerous Rock, though hanging on gamely to finish third. Once in the lead Dangerous Rock quickly increased his advantage and, in spite of tiring in the last quarter, had a two-lengths margin over Mario Augusta at the finish. The latter closed a big gap and wa3 gaining with every stride, too late, however, to overtake the winner. Pickens rode his second winner of the afternoon when he brought home The Pirate triumphant in the fourth race, for which the Baxter veteran was an even-money favorite. Runnan was the pacemaker here and showed the way to the last eighth where he tired and with his elimination The Pirate moved to the front with the above mentioned result.

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