Here and There on the Turf: Promise of Reigh Count.; Is Best in the Derby.; Defection of Victorian.; Promise for Toboggan., Daily Racing Form, 1928-05-16


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Here and There on the Turf Promise of Reigh Count. Is Best in the Derby. Defection of Victorian. Promise for Toboggan. « 1 On the excellent performance of Mrs. Hertz Reigh Count, at Churchill Downs on Monday, it is safe to predict that should he come to the post without any mishap on Saturday it will at least take an extremely good colt to show him the way home in the Kentucky Derby. It was his first race of the year and his victory was one to proclaim that trainer Michell has brought him to racing form with rare skill. What was impressive about the performance, besides the fact that he was the winner, was the manner in wrhich he won. Outrun to the backstretch and going a bit wide on the first turn, Lang kept him on the outside, where there was no danger of interference, and in the straight course there he had no trouble in picking up the leaders. He raced past with ease and Lang made no move to urge him until well inside the final eighth. There Lang shook the whip at him once and then let it fall on his ribs. This probably was not necessary, but the way the chestnut came away when hit testified to what he had in reserve. He worked out the mile and a quarter in 2:05%, which made it an excellent trial, and he was under slight restraint at the end. Taking this race in comparison with what has been shown by the other candidates, in public, there is no reason why Reigh Count should not hold them all safe. He strides like a natural stayer and while there are colts of more robust conformation, he has every right to be the most talked of Derby candidate. There was real disappointment when it became known that H. P. Whitney would be without a starter in the Kentucky Derby. Last year his popular racing establishment took both the Preakness Stakes and the Derby, Bos-tonian was winner of the Pimlico race, with his stablemate Whiskery racing third, while in the Derby it was Whiskery that triumphed. With Victorian duplicating the Preakness Stakes victory of Bostonian, last Friday, it was confidently expected that he would also be sent after the Derby. Sir Barton is the only colt that won both and the son of Whisk Broom II. earned the right for a try at the famous double. It is unfortunate that the date for the running of the Withers Stakes at Belmont Park falls on the same day as the Kentucky Derby, but James Rowe is bountifully supplied with fit eligibles for both races and it need not necessarily be the assignment of Victorian. This same colt would probably have an easier race in the Withers Stakes, which is only a mile dash. The speed he displayed in the Preakness Stakes, when he made the pace from barrier rise to finish, proclaimed a high, class miler and the Derby is at a mile and a quarter. Victorian is up to a milo and a quarter, but should Workman ride him at that distance in the same fashion for a mile and a quarter, as he did at Pimlico, there are grave doubts of his success. Victorian would naturally kill off those that attempted to race with him through the early running of a mile and a quarter, but he would find some raters that would give him stern battle through the last quarter. In the Withers Stakes he will only have to maintain his speed for a mile and he is well equipped for such a distance. With Chance Play at the top of the Toboggan Handicap, under an impost of 130 pounds, and six other eligibles rated at from 120 to 126 pounds, evidence is had of the number of sterling sprinters there are for such three-quarters dashes. Those at the top of the Toboggan, besides Chance Play, are Sarazen with 126 pounds, Happy Argo 125, Scapa Flow 124, Osmand 124, Pompey 124, and Sweepster 120. Of these it may be found that Pompey and Sweepster are both a bit high in the handicap, but the others seem to have earned every ounce they are required to shoulder. Scapa Flow is probably a better horse now than at any time in his career and at least up to a mile he surely belongs close to the top of the handicap. The great four-year-old, after a long absence, was brought back in the Harford Handicap at Havre de Grace. He was beaten by Rock Man, but his race was an excellent one. Then in the Dixie Handicap, Scapa Flow ran another brilliant race though again beaten, while his performance on the closing day of the Pimlico meeting marked his first success of the year. Just so long as this handsome horse holds his present form, and he may even improve, it will take a champion to defeat him over sprinting routes. These sons of Brown Prince II seem to have found themselves this year and there does not seem a one of them that is not on the improve. While the Frederick Johnson band from this great English sire have been making history at Jamaica, another was earning some measure of fame at Pimlico. This one was Social Mug, which races for Eben M. Byers. Social Mug was the winner of four straight races at Pimlico and beginning in the plater division he raced his way to the handicap division with his fourth race, one of the easiest and most impressive of all four. Something of a disappointment until this year, this horse is making good in handicaps. And while Social Mug was winning at Pimlico, Brown Plash, another son of Brown Prince II., was winning the Excelsior Handicap from Herodian, Grey Lag, Dolan, Sweepster and old Cherry Pie. The progeny of this sire appear to improve with age and they have rare courage and rare staying ability. These are thoroughbred qualifications of the greatest importance and the fame of the English sire appears to increase with almost everyone of his progeny that has been raced this year.

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