Training of Race Horses: Methods Employed in Preparing Thoroughbreds for Racing, Daily Racing Form, 1924-12-19


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TRAINING OF RACE HORSES hr : fi Methods Employed in Preparing at at Thoroughbreds for Racing. J" be ca John E. Madden, Master of Hamburg Place, t Goes into Details Concerning This t, Interesting Part of the Sport. ni t: John E. Madden, master of Hamburg Place, bi be and who for the last seven years has headed s tho list of American breeders, is one of the foremost authorities on the thoroughbred In st this country. Several years ago Mr. Madden wrote an article on the training of race 01 on horses and on the request of a reader of gi DAILY PACING FOttM to reprint the ar- a: tide, it is here reproduced : tl In training the thoroughbred of today there tl are certain rules very, essential to the sue- o: on cess of the horse. o of First and foremost. I would say regular feeding, good oats and hay, bran and grass fi and regular work. On work days be sure that u the horse has had ample time to digest his T food. . h he Should the trainer be a betting man he l generally likes to wager on- his horse the o of first time he starts. This is often followed t with bad results, since to know that your u horse can win the first time must have re- y quired fast trials. One can win his first bet s but at the cost of a good horse, leaving hirn c quite often in a nervous condition and per- t haps a breakdown. It takes a skillful trainer to handle sue- t cessfully a nervous horse. A" good foreman, r a good night watchman a-nd a good exercise v boy, weighing about 110 pounds, who will t adopt the balance seat Sloan re-established, which was shown to have been used by the J riders three hundred years-ago. -are necessary in the training of horses. Dont overlook the necessity of having an owner with plenty o j, money. f It is important that the night watchman report the behavior of the horse during the night of his work day. He may not lie down, j which indicates nervousness, the result of j overwork. The trainer today strives to keep his horse in high flesh. t It requires a skillful trainer, to prepare a horse not having started during the sea- ; son and have him good for his first race. If a trainer has a trial horse to be used in connection with preparing his horse, it is r of greater benefit than half a dozen work- t outs and gives the trainer a better line on his condition. Much depends, of course, upon . the horse you are preparing for long races. You have to take into consideration the age. degree of soundness, constitution and dlspo- . silion and more especially, those with ex- treme speedy known as sprinters, which, if easily . placed, may be prepared to go a distance. One that cannot be placed will fail , over a distance, as whether you let him run . out or take him back he usually runs just as fast "inside." Frequently I hear of a horse described as a "quitter," or it is often mentioned that he stops. This is . a recommendation for the , horse, as, after all, we are trying to breed a fast horse and only fast horses stop and quit. I believe there are plenty of stayers, or horses now in training that would run as stayers if they were trained to do so, but the opportunity for their development in this particular line does not exist in the same degree as it did in the past. STAYING A15ILITY A MATTER OF TRAINING. The breed is as good, and, indeed, better, today than when long distance racing-was an attraction in the turf world. Staying is so much a matter of training and is in so 1 great a degree a merely relative attribute that it is difficult to gauge the merits of the stayer at one time with those of the 1 stayer of another. All sound horses can stay at their own pace. The horse is celebrated for his power of endurance, that it is say, for his ability to 1 "stay. "What is meant by a good stayer is an animal which can last longer over a distance of ground at a better pace than his antagonist. Though all or several of his opponents may be able to move at a higher rate of - speed than he can over a part of that distance, but withal, are constitutionally unable to maintain their efforts for the same length 1 of time as the stayer and in accordance to what the stayers speed is, so is he reckoned I among the good, moderate or inferior class of f stayers. Those who decry the race horse of today on i the ground that in his case every quality is 3 sacrificed to speed, .either entirely overlook or do not understand the term staying. They " fail to see f hat speed to which they assert t everything is wrongly sacrificed is in itself C the bedrock of staying power. Of course, in saying that staying is to a great extent a matter of training, it is not t intended to be implied that a horse constitutionally - a non-stayer can be made to stay by simply training him to run long distances. ;- As a rule, when horses are really non-stayers - they are so from physical conformation - or lack of breeding. Take the quarter r horse, a combination of hot and cold blood. "What is it that anchors him the cold or hot blood ? A natural non-stayer cannot be trained into a stayer. But many a horse, judged by the running of his early days to be a non-stayer, has proved on being trained to run long distances, to possess staying power of high order. If there is an incentive to owners to look out as much for stayers as for speed milers, horses able to go a long distance will soon be found in largely increased numbers. A good many horses which in these times are branded as poor stayers, wouid have been considered good enough in that respect in the older days, when races were certainly not run as fast as they are now. SALYIDEKE 111 NOT REQUIRE MUCH WORK. I won the Annual Championship, two and one-quarter miles, value 5,000, with Salvi-dere and King James. Salvidere was delicate and unsound, fortunately he did not require much work. King James was different a glutton at the feed box as well as work. It was necessary to repeat this horse, something I have often done and with good results. His final work for this stake Avas one and one-quarter miles in 2:11 and twenty-five minutes after I repeated him a half mile in forty-nine seconds. Salvidere worked handily a mile and a half in 2:3S, but was not repeated. hr fi at at J" be ca t t, ni t: bi be s st 01 on gi a: tl tl o: on o of fi u T h he l o of t u y s c t t r v t J j, f j j t ; r t . . , . , 1 1 - 1 I f i 3 " t C t - - - r It is easy to train a good horse. Q A good horse is dangerous in anybodys j hands, the same as a shotgun is in a cornfield "niggers" hands. A horse will usually show h;s condition feeding time and, if nervous, work should postponed. Nervous horses are often subject to scouring. Frequently you hear of fast trials for big events. Those are given, generally, by young trainers, just beginning their career, but as , they grow older you will note a change in their methods and their work instead of running trials against the watch. Tho American trainer is a great care- : taker, spending much money for linaments to : : used on legs and body, which removes ; soreness after a hard workout or a race. ;tl the The trainer of today uses grass freely in- sc stead of the medicine ball. jc Horses which are expected to take part ;u: the prominent- tracks around New York iri generally commence their work about Janu- p, ary 15. Many trainers do not commence until j. the first of February and are confined to p the shed, as the weather, climate and roads the metropolitan tracks seldom permit y, outdoor work at that time. i, in Some horses are given as much as from five to seven miles of slow jogging daily under the shed until the weather opens up. rj The trainer considers himself fortunate if . can .get on the course as early as St. ;s, Patricks day, when, after about two .weeks : slow -galloping, miles are made in about y two minutes, and then you gradually work o up to a mile in 1 : 15. This is the point where a at you can determine the soundness and con- p stitution of your horse. A horse with a good constitution can be given more work than f those to which nature has not been so kind. , Few blankets are used by the American trainer. Every effort is made to keep as p much flesh as possible on his horse. Light v weight linseys are mostly used and they take i the place of the old time woolen blanket. I 1 HOT WEATHER MAKES TRAINING DIFFICULT. American weather, especially when it is A hot, makes American training methods dif- c fcrcnt from English methods, as the weath- f er in England is generally cold. I After the spring workout, the condition of his wind will show the condition of the horse. I Generally two days are given between 1 work and the horses are then indulged in i trotting and slow gallops. f Some horses will race to their best form when given slow exercise every other day t and at no time a fast trial. 1 With a stable of twenty horses there might be but two which require the same treatment to race successfully. . 1 Judgment must be used in estimating the i individual qualities of your horses as to 1 soundness, constitution and disposition. 1 Sobriety is most desirable in a trainer and a good jockey always adds to the success of the horse. It is necessary that you have discipline 1 of the strictest kind in a racing stable and 1 the more gentle the attendant or the care- taker, the better the results. Ilemember this, a horse only knows what : you teach him. "When a horse shows fear of his attendant, the man has abused him and should be discharged. 1 A thoroughbred, like the works of a watch, needs careful handling. In mating, much attention should be paid to disposition and constitution, for a good disposition and a strong constitution, with the ever necessary gift of speed, makes the sSake horse. He can lay off the pace in the early stages of the race and win. The beginner will often tell you that he is going to breed stayers only. I know then that he is going to breed many slow horses. I have been asked regarding color and size of a good race horse. This is a difficult question and often a matter of fancy. The ! old saying is so true a good, gamecock has , no bad color. Now as to size, many big turnips are hollow.- . Less blanks are likely to follow the selection . of small or medium-sized yearlings. The yearling that fills your eye as to size is often I too big when he is two years old. I approve of the big horse if you judge him i by the scales, instead of the tape or standard. In case of illness or lameness, consult a reputable veterinarian. Beware of quacks, Avho cure all ailments, or profess to do so. In case of lameness, frequently the trainer or owner resorts to. the firing iron "or severe - blister too quickly. From bitter experience I f am as afraid of the firing iron as the devil is 3 of holy water. Many cases of lameness can 1 be cured by using cooling lotions with cotton and a bandage. Tiemove the shoes, trim the - feet so they will have frog pressure, turn i the horse into a paddock two hours in the 5 morning and two hours in the afternoon. In i many cases it is well to give a mild purgative, . especially in the case of gross horses. Cut their daily grain down to one-half of what t they were being given while in training. In-i - stead of using a severe blister cn the leg you will get better results if you apply a mild 1 blister on the horses back directly where the - saddle is placed. This will insure a rest of f about two weeks, then the blister will be 2 healed, and by this time the cooling lotion 1 has removed the fever from the leg, and you i have lost little time.

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