Reflections: Yearling Sales Moved to Kentucky; Eastern Breeders Want New York; Future Site of Sales at Stake; Saratoga Versus Lexington, Ky., Daily Racing Form, 1943-05-24


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Nelson Dunstan REFLECTIONS By Nelson Dunstan Yearling Sales Moved to Kentucky Eastern Breeders Want New York Future Site of Sales at Stake Saratoga Versus Lexington Ky NEW YORK N Y May 22 22With With the FasigTipton announcement the transfer of the Saratoga sales to Lexington Ky is now official In the release the famous sales organization made no mention of the eastern breeders but on Friday afternoon this writer learned that a Virginia breeder stated Here in Virginia we are agreed almost to the last member that we want the FasigTipton Company to stage a sale somewhere near to New York City In fact we will insist on it Mrs Tranter president of the FasigTipton Company through the companvs Lexington representative Thomas B Cromwell assurea the Kentucky breeders she would stage no sale in the East prior to the Lexington vendue She will not do so but if the eastern breeders insist on their own sale her company would be dutybound to stage it With virtually no organization or leadership the eastern breeders have been slow to arrive at a final decision to go along with the Kentucky breeders or stage a separate sale If they are to secure a place and have catalogues prepared for a sale in the East they must go into action The situation is complex at best but with Saratoga definitely out of the picture there should be no further delay Kentucky breeders are now sending in all lists the FasigTipton Company informed us just prior to our writing these lines linesThe The Kentucky sales will be staged at the Keene land track rather than the FasigTipton sales pad ¬ docks just outside Lexington Starting on Monday August 9 they will continue through Wednesday August 11 with afternoon and evening sessfons With no racing at Kccneland this would mean that from 60 to 75 head could be sold at each session thus a minimum of 360 This will be one of the most significant years in sales history For the past five or six years there has been some agitation to sell in Kentucky ratKer than at Saratoga Those asking the change had some good arguments to offer Shipping is an important item and it is true that a goodly portion of the babes sold had to be shipped back to the Blue Grass There is always the fear that the yearlings will be taken sick How much easier it would be to have the buyers go to Kentucky and right there we hit on what this writer considers the most important of all factors The Kentucky breeders did not ask for the change this year It was the lack of transportation which brought it about But there can be no denying that the coming sale will be the testing tube as to whether the sales will make a permanent change to Ken ¬ tucky or be switched back to Saratoga when the war is over Behind all this sales controversy is the shadow of the man Jim Tranter Some five years ago he passed on but before he went he left a monument in the Saratoga sales ring With vision and foresight he built one of the colorful showplaces of the American turf People came from far and wide to witness the unique sight and terisely follow the bidding as it mounted to thousands Folks of the social world were at the ringside and more than one man attended who had no intention of buying but went home to tell his wife with a grin he had bought a yearling or two It became the Tattersalls of America and in many years of sitting at that Spa ringside this writer has seen famous persons not one but dozens watching with fascination as bids flew thick and fast Tattersalls in England never put on a show such as Jim Tranter in his younger days gave the bidders and spectators at Saratoga But he had one conviction and that was you have to bring the horses to the buyers not the buyers to the horses It was almost an obsession with him but he proved beyond the shadow of a dqubt that his Spa ring would attract buyers not for three nights but for three weeks That one man did more to dignify the selling of horses in this country than all others put together togetherNow Now comes a testing of the theory that buyers will go to the horses The test is being made in the worst year possible and if it is successful we who maintain Saratoga is the ideal sales center will have to admit buyers will go to the horses Saratoga held fans for three weeks of sales for the reason that it has been the mecca of thoroughbred sport down through the years There has never been another like it and if it should pass from the scene the turf will be the poorer and so we believe will the breeders Lexington can ¬ not hold visitors as did Saratoga and down deep many of her breeders still believe there is no comparison between the two as sales centers On the other hand Lexington is a grand little city of real people If you love a horse you wiirbe at home there for they talk your language The farms are its greatestmagnet and no one could hope to see even a small number of the many famous horses and farms in three days If you have never been there it will be an experience you will never forget No night clubs but the Lafayette Hotel the best hotel in the section is the meeting place of the horsefolk They become angry when anyone says it is hot there in August We wont say it but we will say it would be a good idea to take the lightest clothes you have haveIn In the final analysis the important thing is not whether breeders return to Saratoga or continue to sell in Lexington Let the breeders decide that What is important is that the breeder be supported and encouraged to go on This paper has suggested a breeders award The publishers and editors made no claim it was the final answer to the fact that the breeders were not getting a fair share of the profits they create They do claim it holds part of the answer So do some of jthe biggest men in racing and breeding Another answer is in the yearling sales Ruinous prices have prevailed and the breeders have become alarmed at the increase in the claiming of horses and the decrease in the number of people who once bought and raced yearlings That the yearling market will eventually regain its strength we have no doubt But in the meantime a breeders award will help If a breeder sends a bad yearling to market he will get no dividends If he sends a good one the buyer will make money and under the award plan so will the breeder That is as it should be We say that yearling buyers are the needed people today and racing needs every one of them it can get in Lexington or New York When breeders get a true price for their babes an award will riot be so necessary But when a horse sells for 700 and earns over 300000 we believe an award to the breeder is fitting and proper

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