Here and There on the Turf: Louisiana Derby Test. the Fair Grounds Racing. Saratoga and Its Stakes. Interest in Kentucky, Daily Racing Form, 1924-02-25


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Here and There on the Turf Louisiana Derby Test. The Fair Grounds Racing. Saratoga and Its Stakes. Interest in Kentucky. Just how important the New Orleans Handicap is in relation to the Louisiana Derby is understood when it is known that sixteen of the eighteen that have been named for that contest are also eligible for the 5,000 race that brings the Jefferson Park meeting to a close on March 17. This New Orleans Handicap is a mile, for three-year-olds, and it is a sufficient test for the mile and an eighth of the first Derby of the year. Of course, its being under handicap conditions may result in many declining after the announcement of weights, but it is a sure thing that the ,009 race will bring out a thorough" representative field. The two in the New Orleans Handicap which were not nominated to the Derby are Telescope and Everglade, and there does not seem to have been any good reason for their being named for the richer race. They have t no time shown a Derby class. Those eligibh to start Saturday that are being pointed for the Louisiana Derby are: Fredericktown, Brilliant Cast, Big and Burley, Flying Fur, Wil-nier the Wizard, Thorndale, King ONeill II., Blotter, Mah Jong, Herrnidale, Polvo, Leather-wood, Invictus, Dreamer, Payman and Deron-da. And it is more than probable that the name of the Derby winner is in that list. Benjamin Blocks Thorndale and Edward B. Bradleys Big and Burley were both winners I Saturday and each raced over a worth-while distance, when Thorndale made a show of some older horses at a mile, while Big and Burley defeated those of his own age in a dash of a mile and seventy yards. These victories could hardly be considered as in any manner sensational, but they tended to show becoming progress in the Louisiana Derby preparation and, in the case of Thorn- 1 dab, particularly amounted to something. Big and Burley is a well-named, big, awkward son of North Star III., but he has been i steadily improving and he has a way of fin- i ishing that suggests real ability to race over the Derby distance. He is almost sure to go ! on improving as he loses some of his awk- 1 wardnss. I Brilliant Cast, Wilmer the Wizard, King ONeill II., Invictus, Blotter, Mah Jong and : virtuaTy all of those named have shown recent form to indicate progress toward Derby ccn- i dition. Most of them have failed to show thi becoming consistency that is demanded of a Derby candidate, but there has been no race c that promises to be a better test than the New c Orleans Handicap. There has been no race r where so many of the candidates promise to r come together and that, coupled with the distance, gives the handicap importance. . r What is most to be desired is good track S conditions for the race. That has been a vain a hope so often this winter that racing has been t fcfriously handicapped. When the racing at t Jefferson Park experienced such unseasonable weather it was predicted that at the Fair c Grounds there would be atonement and that b be I 1 i i ! 1 I : i c c r r r S a t t c b be all the bad weather had been used up in December. But what Jefferson Park suffered from rainy weather and muddy going was not a circumstance to what was in store at the course of the Business Mens Racing Association. Not in years has there b;en such long continued bad weather and, at this time, all hope for the meeting proving a financial success has vanished. The sport that has been furnished has been worthy of a better fate and the association is to be congratulated on the character of its racing. It was unfortunate that it should have been found necessary to bar an owner, trainer and horse from the turf, but the punishment was evidence enough that the stewards arc determined to keep the racing clean. It has been suggested that action be taken against other alleged offenders, but in every j case it is known there has been an investiga tion and the setwards have satisfied themselves as to the guilt or innocencs of al who have appeared to play fast and loose with the rucs of racing. The stewards have ably filled the office to which they were appointed and there never has been a more carefully governed race meeting. Recently announced dates for the New York racing season award twenty-six days to the Saratoga Association. For that meeting, in addition to the various early closing stakes, there will be twenty-one additional fixtures that are to close March 10. These, with the rich stake races of an early closing date and the steeplechases that are to offered, promise to make the Saratoga 1 racing this year notable indeed. It is at Saratoga that horses and horsemen gather from the various racing grounds. It is there that the East and the West come togetherthere that frequently the Canadian and Maryland champions enter the lists. Frequently it is the meeting that settles a championship. Occasionaly a champion develops that for some reason or other has not been named for these Saratoga races to the eternal regret of his owner. But lessons, have been learned by this omission and not to name a colt for racing at Saratoga is to deny him one of his best meetings. Last year T. C. Bradley had not nominated Wise Counsellor for any of the Saratoga stakes, and it was a costly omission. Later this colt was sold to John S. Word and he has been engaged literally in all stakes tha, have closed since the purchase. Mrs. Vanderbilts unbeaten Sarazcn was another two-year-old that had no Saratoga engagements j and the only way that Happy ! Thoughts had a chance to show her speed was when she raced in the Grab Bag Handicap under a lease to a subscriber. These are instances in just one meeting of what it meant to fail to nominate for Saratoga stakes, and both owners and breeders will profit by that lesson. It is assured that the entries for the stakes that are to close March : 10 will be as large and representative as has ever been the rule of the Saratoga offerings. ! Within a short time there will be an an-; nounccment made of the nominations that 1 have been made to the historic Kentucky j ! : ! 1 Derby that had its first decision away back in 1875, when it was won by Aristides. It would be almost possible to publish the list, for it is safe to say that it would only be necassary to obtain a list of all the best two-year-olds of last year. Many and many another name will appear in that list, but it is a race for the best, and it always attracts the best. Following or possibly before the announcement of the nominations for the Derby there will be a publication of the Kentucky racing datei. This announcement is frequently held up until after the adjournment of the Kentucky legislature, but with the defeat of the Bennett bill and the triumph of racing there does not seem to be any good reason for not the racing time known. Maryland is making ready for the opening of its season and word comes that various horses are being shipped in to be made ready for what is to be offered. While others that have wintered at one or other of the Maryland training grounds are being limbered up and made ready for the actual work of training. Then there is the old Benning track that always has its big winter colony. This year the old District of Columbia course has been a wonderfully healthful place for the thoroughbreds and there has not been a case of sickness reported. Every year Benning has sent a goodly number of fit horses up to Bowie for the opening meeting of the Maryland campaign, and the number this year promises to be larger than ever before.

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