view raw text
[ BETWEEN RACES *y oscar om ARCADIA, Calif., June 11.— Enactment into law of the California quarter horse measure has precipitated a crisis in the quarter horse world and those concerned are hopeful that cool thinking will lead to a solution. The California law, as signed by Governor Earl Warren, designates the American Quarter Horse Association as the off i- r cial registry body, but it develops that the American group is not at present set up to afford stud book service for what is commonly accepted in the West as the American quarter running horse. The American Association registerers primarily for stock purposes and has delegated its function of registry and identification insofar as racing purses are concerned to the quarter running group with headquarters in Tucson, Ariz. The California law eliminates the national association, which might be termed a rival of the American group, from legal standing in this state, a state of affairs not calculated to make the national people, who have headquarters in Houston and Hockley, Texas, very happy. The Quarter Running Horse Association recognizes and registers horses on a basis of merit regardless of breed, with a few exceptions, such as paints and appaloosas. Thoroughbreds are welcomed into the quarter running fold, many of the better quarter horse performers also being registered thorough- » breds. Melville Haskell of Tucson, chairman of the new Quarter Horse Racing Now Legal in California Crisis Posed for Rival Registry Groups Arizona Commission Readies New Rule Book Dashes Should Prove Boon to Smaller Fairs Arizona Racing Commission, is a director of both the Quarter Running Association and the American quarter body. He reveals that both groups have worked closely in the past, and would like to work as closely as possible with the national people, a task somewhat complicated by the heretofore, at least rivalry between the registry books. AAA "The logical solution," says Haskell, "would be a consolidation of the three bodies into a single unit with power to register both for stock and racing purposes. The entire setup is rather complicated, but I think this goal should be and can be attained." Haskell went on to explain that the American quarter running horse sport had flourished largely because the registry book was founded on performance merit, and with the few notable exceptions, not on bloodlines. "We welcome thoroughbreds to participate in quarter running horse -races," continued Haskell. "If they can beat the best, so much the better. If not, it is just hard luck. Only the fittest and the fastest survive. It is our observation that quarter running races reached their highest public interest when a thoroughbred is matched against quarter running horses. The Fair Truckle-Barbara B. race at Hollywood Park and the Olympia-Stella Moore dash in Florida were proof enough of that. We feel that unless the quarter running races are in effect open to the world you might just as well write races for burros, i" except but one breed of horses from the broad general statement. That is the thoroughbred. The thoroughbred breeders have, through the centuries, been able to eliminate from their blood horses which do not measure up to a standard which is accepted as the highest attainment in the world for any light horse breed." AAA Haskell, incidentally, is the chairman of the new Arizona Racing Commission, which formally takes office on July 1. He looks forward to some rather brilliant sport in the Cactus State this coming fall and winter. "We have a house cleaning job in Arizona to do, and we intend to do it," says Haskell. "We finally have a good law and we intend to enforce it. The situation which has previously prevailed in Arizona was nobodys fault. The sport operated under the auspices of the tax commission, which had comparatively little authority. It was so bad that at one time the tax commission could not even back up the stewards in the matter of a disqualification. Some rulings of the commission were overturned by the courts. But all that is changed. The racing law now gives the racing Continued on Page Seven ] BETWEEN RACES h By OSCAR OTIS Continued from Page Forty commission ample authority in all aspects of racing. While it is our off-season now in Arizona, we have been busy preparing a rule book to govern the sport. We have the F advantage in drawing up our rule book of ~* the experience and rules of the other states, and we are lifting many of the regulations Q from the several state commissions as we £E deem most desirable and suitable to Ari-zona racing. Our first draft has been com-pleted and will be checked and revised and 9 officially approved at our first commission 5; meeting, scheduled shortly after July 1." -Arizona, it might be mentioned, has two 2; major centers, Phoenix and Tucson. The O Phoenix midwinter racing has been highly Z popular with both citizens and tourists. P The sport in Tucson has leaned more to I quarter horse dashes, with a liberal mixture " of events exclusively for thoroughbreds and J= over accepted thoroughbred distances. AAA m The California law, as enacted, offers a — wide leeway to race course managements -I*1 in the matter of carding quarter running _ races. Major associations may offer them g as extra races over and above the usual eight and, we understand, perhaps a ninth on Saturdays and holidays. The quarter races are mandatory to the extent of one a day for fairs. It is just our guess that many of the smaller fairs, which have not been hitherto able to offer thoroughbred racing because of the expense involved, will find it expedient to offer quarter horse racing. At last count, there were 67 fairs in the state, and only 10 offered thoroughbred racing with pari-mutuels. Some of the fairs would find quarter horse sport just the thing to add to their popularity, but we doubt if the quarter horses will ever invade such "shows" as the National Orange at San Bernardino or the Date Festival at Riverside. These, of course, are among the many fairs getting much of their financial support from metropolitan thoroughbred racing. AAA When jockey Britt Layton was suspended for 10 days for careless riding, a record almost unparalleled on the American turf was marred. Layton has been riding steadily for more than 10 years, and had never been as much fined, let alone suspended. . . . The Layton suspension came as the result of an accident in which jockeys Sevio Cardiali and Harold Bailey were injured. . . . Cardiali, from his hospital bed where he is recuperating, said he was convinced it was an accident as he had never ridden against a cleaner pilot than Layton. . . . Layton himself, after seeing the pictures, said he still was unconvinced he caused the spill, but he did not wish to argue with the Hollywood Park stewards, and shrugged it off as just a bit of hard luck. Incidentally, this writer has commented before on the vast difference in the thinking of the board of stewards at the six major California tracks. Here the stewards are prone toward three-day set downs. In the North, the five day penalty is popular for rules infractions. At Santa Anita, 10 days are far more frequently noted in rulings than either fives or threes.