Skill of William Clare: How He Restored Fast Going to Brighton Beach over Night, Daily Racing Form, 1924-01-17


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! ! j j j j I j i I j j j j j ! ; ; SKILL OF WILLIAM CLARE How He Restored Fast Going to : Brighton Beach Over Night. Came of a Family of Track Superintendents, but Ho was the Best of Them All in His Chosen Calling. NEW YORK, N. T., Jan. 1G. William Clare, who died at Saratoga Springs on Sun-day morning of apoplexy at the age of 52, came from a family that had made the care of race tracks a life study, and he had long been regarded as the leader in his chosen occupation. Mr. Clares grandfather was assistant superintendent of Jerome Park, the home of the American Jockey Club for so many years, while his father, James Clare, had been superintendent of the Brighton Beach and Clifton race tracks and had put other courses where the Messrs. Engeman operated into condition. Ivy City, near Washington, and Mystic Park, on the outskirts of Boston, were some that he had charge of when the men who developed Brighton Beach went outside the Empire State to conduct race meetings. William Clare had been his fathers assistant for many years, and when James Clare died in 1901 the Brighton Beach Racing Association selected him as his succes-! sor. Fast as the Brighton course was under the manipulation of James Clare, his son improved it and made it famous not only for its resiliency but for its safety. MAKING A TRACK FAST. Perhaps the finest piece of work ever performed by the young superintendent was in 1901 when it poured rain the night before the running of the Brighton Handicap. Mr. Clare put seventy-five men to work with buckets and sponges and the following morning when the sun came out he started the harrows going and electrified the public by presenting a fast surface for the big race over which Broomstick and Irish Lad had their historic battle, the result being a head victory for the former in 2:02. This was a new record for the distance and was an eloquent testimonial of the skill that had transformed a quagmire into a lightning fast track. Mr. Clare remained with the Brighton Beach Racing Association until the track closed in 1909, and then engaged in the gen-eial contracting business at Coney Island, in which he made a success. He was induced to go to the Saratoga Association five years ago, succeeding Billy Meyers as superintendent of that property. The success of Clare at Saratoga was as great as at Brighton Beach. WAS WIDELY POPULAR. He made friends with the townspeople and was a great favorite with the horsemen who have come from distant points year after , yedr to take part in the meetings in the foothills of the Adirondacks. He was an in- defatigable worker, and was to be seen early and late all over the big property. He will be greatly missed by ex-President Wilson and his assobciates in the management. The funeral will be at Saratoga Tuesday, at 10 oclock, from St. demons Church. The body will be brought on the 12:05 train to 1925 East Fourth street, Brooklyn, the home of his aunt, Mrs. John Hylan, from whose house the burial will take place on Thursday at noon. Mr. Clare is survived by a wife and daugh-: ter, a sister, Miss Anna Clare, and a brother, Thomas Clare, who has been his assistant at Saratoga the last three years.

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