Sires And Dams: Meissen Goes Back Home to Peru; American Horse Deteriorated?; American Versus English Horses; France Needs Help to Rebuild, Daily Racing Form, 1943-05-26


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Meissen Goes Back Home to Peru American Horse Deteriorated American Versus English Horses France Needs Help to Rebuild NEW YORK N Y May 25 A few minutes after we read that Meissen the Peruvian wonder horse was being returned to his own country we received a postcard which said Now that the grandson of the English sire Sunreigh and the English mare Contessina Count Fleet has made a show of American sires and since horses by foreign sires have done the same almost continuously down through the ages from the great English horse Sysonby a good strong article by you on the inferiority of the American horse due to deterioration would ie very appropriate You could show how the race horse in the United States is kept from becoming extmt by import ¬ ing foreign sires etc The card was unsigned but that does not matter We would not agree if a regiment of breeders signed it True we owe a lot to the impor ¬ tation of Bull Dog Sir Gallahad HI Blenheim II and other comparatively recent arrivals But it is also true that we could get along without many of the sires and dams which have been brought here down through the years We see no deterioration in the American horse and especially in so far as speed is concerned Any num ¬ ber of world and American records were created between the time of Sysonby and Count Fleet and quite a few are still standing on the record books Many times we have heard oldtimers say the modernday horse is not equal to those of former generations And just a few years before the war English racing and breeding followers were in a dither over the claim their horses were growing soft and deteriorating1 The claim was made for the reason that French and American horses were consistently defeating homebreds in important English stakes The discussion became so heated that Lt Col P E Rickctts went into great length concern ¬ ing it in the London Sporting Life Colonel Ricketts was ranked with the late Professor Robertson Mankato as a British authority on the thorough ¬ bred Colonel Ricketts said Critics abound who decry our presentday breed on one score or another while those who champion it content them ¬ selves with refuting the critics accusations and maintain that our breed is the best in the world and that all is well with it But and it was quite a but is there not something ridiculous year after year as the successes of American and other foreignbred horses continue to mount up to assume such superiority for our breed that horses like Omaha Flares Boswell and Quashed must remain taboo they and their stock forever There is no doubt that new infusions are good for the thoroughbreds of all countries But does it not become ridiculous when we say our horses are deteriorating and that we need English infusions when British authorities are worrying about the superiority of our horses Years ago when Iroquois won the Epsom Derby and Foxhall won the Ascot Gold Cup they called them the American years 18811882 For some time English writers maintained those two crops were the poorest to race there in many a season If that was the case then it would follow that English horses have deteriorated or ours have improved Many more of our horses have been going qver but the point is they have more than held their own Reigh Count sire of Count Fleet won the Coronation Cup and ran second in the Ascot Gold Cup while Battle ¬ ship scored over the best jumpers England could produce in the Grand National Steeplechase On the other hand did not Zev defeat Papyrus could Epinard a truly grand horse defeat our American product And now Meissen the Peruvian wonder horse is on his way back home after a dismal showing in this country So let us have new infusions of blood by all means but leave out the references to deterioration Our horses are as good as any to be found the world over overActually Actually there is little difference in the bloodlines of thoroughbreds regardless of country They are one great family and it was not many years ago that William Woodward made the plea they be so recognized But the English would have none of it and it is a question what their attitude will be after the war The syndicate recently endeavored to buy Bahrain back but the American group would not do business We are rich in Blandford Teddy and Phalaris blood and still our own clans of Domino Fair Play and Ben Brush are still very much in the picture Hardly a week passes Tmt that we do not hear England is all but impoverished in blood and will need our aid to build her structure That help will be forthcoming if it is asked and if so is just another indication that the thoroughbred is one great family The little matter of the Jersey Act may offer complications in fact it is a certainty the act will confuse matters if not removed Unless the help means sending back some of the fashionable stallions we have here it stands to reason England will not buy or lease the American horses that the Jersey Act branded as halfbreds Either the Jersey Act must go or our horses cannot go But if they did the good old pure General Stud Book would get an infusion of the blood that made the American horse what he is today todayEngland England is mainly racing now to prove which horses are worthy of stud oppor ¬ tunities On a skeleton scale of sport most of them are being retired after their three yearold career A large number of the inares are turned out and no effort is made to breed them So it is going to take years for her breeders to produce on a normal scale again The tenacity and bulldog courage of the English has been plainly apparent in recent years But while she recovered quickly after the first World War the task now confronting her breeders is a far different one Her export business in horses was a vast one France is all but wiped out She has sufficient to stage a small race meeting now and then but no stock worthy of breeding England will recover much more quickly and it would not surprise us if in time she aided France to rebuild what the Germans stole or ruined If ever the time was ripe to bring the horses of all countries under one great stud book it will be immediately after the war But we doubt if that will come about

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