Here and There on the Turf: Scapa Flows Quality. May Win Both Races. Local Option and Racing. Registering the Foals. Two Racing Laws., Daily Racing Form, 1927-05-09


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o ♦ Here and There on the Turf Scapa Flows Quality. May Win Both Races. Local Option and Racing. Registering the Foals. Two Racing Laws. * ♦ Few trainers with eligibles for the Preakness Stakes and the Kentucky Derby have expressed a greater confidence of winning both big prizes than Scott Harlan. He has Scapa Flow right on edge for both races, and George Conway, who trains the mighty Crusader, shares the belief in the quality of Scapa Flow when he admits that he may prove himself even a better Man o War than Mr. Riddles great four-year-old. When Scapa Flow raced to victory at Pimlico on Friday the score was one to nicely put the finishing touches on his preparation for the Preakness Stakes. He was not opposed by much, but he took up his weight and galloped home with such supreme ease that no doubt was left of his present condition. It was the second start of the season for Scapa Flow and on his other appearance he finished third to Jopagan and Rip Rap, two other eligibles for the spring features. Since that race Harlan has added blinkers to the equipment of his champion, and he was so equipped Friday. It is also significant that shortly before Scapa Flow gave his exhibition of readiness for the Preakness Stakes both Jopagan and Rip Rap were beaten at the same course. Scapa Flow won his race over the mile and seventy yards distance, while the other two were beaten by both Montferrat and Banton, racing a mile and a sixteenth. Right on the eve of the Preakness, the conviction is forced that the winner has Scapa Flow to beat, while he appears to be the most notable candidate for the Kentucky Derby to be run next Saturday. Never before since the Sir Barton year has there been a candidate for both races with a better chance of taking down both. If there ever was a question that should be decided by local option it is racing. That is just the decision that is being sought in Florida at this time in the bill recently introduced at Tallahassee by John W. Watson of Miami. Under the provisions of the bill each county in the state will have an opportunity to decide for itself, at the polls, whether or not there shall be racing. There could hardly be a more fair way to find out the feeling of the taxpayers in relation to the sport, and if Dade County desires the sport, while Broward, Duval and Hillsborough Counties or any of the others do not want the sport, they have an opportunity to decide for themselves. It is not always safe for racing to put the question to the voters, for the reason that the advocates of the turf are not noted for exercising the right of franchise, while those who are always seeking to break down the turf are just as remarkable for their campaigning and voting on election day. Too often this carelessness on the part of the devotees of the turf has resulted in such aV election not really reflecting the will of the majority, though it represented the will of the majority of these who voted. Anyone who has made a study of Dade County and taken the trouble to find out cannot fail to reach the conclusion that racing would carry the county overwhelmingly should the entire vote be brought out. Since the establishment of the Miami Jockey Club, and its three tremendously successful meetings at the Hialeah course, racing has taken a strong hold on the citizens of Dade County. It was because of this popularity of the sport that Mr. Watson was so numerously petitioned for this local option bill that he has introduced, but these same petitioners must come out and cast their votes for racing or all of their work has gone for naught. In California racing was recently defeated at the polls, though the petitions that placed the question on the ballot made it appear there could be no chance for defeat. There would have been some chance for defeat had the petitioners put their signatures to the petitions with their ballots. That is where they failed utterly in their fight which was begun so auspiciously. Citizens of Florida who desire to have racing should profit by the lesson taught at the California polls j and if they are to save the sport for the state they must .cast their ballots, if an I election becomes ordered. It makes no difference whether or not it is generally known that this or that county is strong for racing the vote is the only way that the strength can prove the temper of the taxpayers and bring about the desired result. Two legislatures have before them at this time racing measures that mean much to the American turf. One is in Illinois, where a bill has passed the lower house which calls for legalizing of the pari-mutuel system of wagering in the state and a daily tax to make the racing possible under the restrictions set forth in the law, which has been discussed at some length in this column. The other is in Florida, where it is sought to make the sport a question of local option. Illinois will have its racing whether or not the law is enacted, for it has been proved possible to conduct the sport within the law and the recent race meetings conducted in the state have done much to advance the turf and present the sport in its best guise. With Florida it has been pretty conclusively shown that a local option law would result in racing carrying Dade County by an overwhelming majority — thanks to the high-class brand of racing that has been furnished by the Miami Jockey Club the three seasons of its existence. It has always been contended that a racing law is greatly to be desired anywhere. That admits of no argument, but the turf interests of Illinois have been brought together by an association for self-government that means much for the future of racing in the state, whether or not the law is enacted. This Illinois Turf Association has formulated rules for the government of the sport in the state that will keep it above reproach just as long as they are enforced and thus, whether or not the present bill passes the Senate and is enacted into a law, there need be no immediate apprehension for racing. Of course, it is greatly to be desired that a suitable law be enacted and a daily tax imposed, for the further protection of the turf, but big things have been accomplished already in safeguarding Illinois as far as the existing racing is concerned.

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