view raw text
, 1 Order Barring Stremmel-Breds Based on Doubtful Parentage The Jockey Club Acts to ♦ Protect Stud Book From False Registrations By OSCAR OTIS GARDEN STATE PARK, Camden, N. J.. May 13. — The fundamental honesty of American breeding and the identity of its individuals sold at auction or privately was never more clearly demonstrated than in the so-called Bill Stremmel case, which saw the stewards of The Jockey . Club in New York in effect revoke the registration papers of 17 thoroughbreds because of what the club termed "false" representation. The horses involved were all the produce of Glen Cove Stud, a California establishment which has been disbanded. The stud was founded, operated, and later dispersed by Bill Stremmel. It is located on the shores of the Sacramento River near Val-lejo, and while the property remains in the family hands, there are no longer any thoroughbreds there. Stremmel, who served in the Marines during the war, entered breeding upon a large scale after his honorable discharge after several years of service. While he did race a few horses himself, he bred mainly for the market, and most of the Glen -Cove yearlings were sold at the annual California venues in Southern California. You may recall that during the late war years and for a few seasons thereafter, prices for yearlings were high, and Stremmel made Glen Cove a going concern. However, the falling market for yearlings, and his substantial loss involved with the untimely death of the sire which he imported from Italy, the aging Ortello, bankrupted him. Charges Regard Ortello Offspring While The Jockey Club statement anent his case did not specifically say so, and emphasized that the investigation was still continuing, it can be said authoritatively that in the main, the charges of-false registration centered about the Ortello offspring, which are now two-year-olds. There were such yearlings registered with the Jockey Club. The charges were made that the youngsters were not in fact sons of Ortello, but of one or the other of the two sires also standing at Glen Cove at that time, the proven Andy K. and the former stakes winner Viscounty. This writer understands from reliable sources that not all of the 17 animals under "suspension" are open to suspicion, but that pending definite clarification of male parentage. The Jockey Club revoked the papers on all so that no more mistakes would be possible. First word that there might be something wrong with the Glen Cove registrations came from a discharged farm employe, who, we understand, kept his own separate set of breeding books apart from the official records kept by the farm. The gossip of the groom reached the ears of The Jockey Club, which, in its desire to keep the Stud Book pure and beyond reproach, requested the Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau, as a special favor, to make the necessary thorough examination and either prove the charges or refute them as the idle gossip of a disgruntled employe. TRPB Makes Investigation Spencer Drayton, head of the TRPB, delegated the task to John Hanson, former ace FBI executive, and only last year "loaned" by the TRPB to Governor Earl Warren of California to head its crime committee investigation unit, but who, when his work with the state was ended, returned to head the TRPB West Coast office. Hanson began work on the case last January and quietly questioned scores of people who would have knowledge of the Glen Cove operation. Among the main witnesses was a Vallejo veterinarian and former employe of the farm in addition to the groom whose original gossip launched the whole matter. However, and we can speak again with a degree of authority. The Jockey Club did not take its action of Friday until additional corroborative evidence had been secured which, to its mind, at least, made a case that would warrant its drastic action. It is anticipated that the barring of these 17 horses from racing will touch off a barrage of legal action in California. It is doubtful if the Glen Cove incident will cause any widespread distrust of breeders. The incident as it occurred at Glen Cove is so rare in the annals of rac- JOCKEY WILLIAM GARNER— The veteran relnsman will ride free lance at the Lincoln Fields-at-Washington Park meeting opening tomorrow. ing as to be almost unique. That The Jockey Club acted promptly after the TRPB investigation disclosed enough evidence upon which to base action is sufficient proof that the club zealously protects the integrity of the Stud Book in fact as well as in lip service. Stremmel has been summoned to appear before the stewards of The Jockey Club and present a defense. We understand he has some points in his favor, and that the cloud thrown over some of the horses mentioned in The Jockey Club ruling may be lifted. We said some, not all. Actually, the club has raised the question if there are any living offspring of the sire, Ortello, which were foaled at Glen Cove. The groom says no. These horses, then, of necessity, must be either by Andy K. or Viscounty, as in the years in question, Stremmel did not book any of his own mares to outside sires, and no other studs were on the Glen Cove property. Ortello was so old that insurance could not be obtained upon him. His book was full for the season he stood, at Glen Cove, his first and only one, of course. According to the farm records, Ortello covered five mares before he died. The loss of Ortello and. cancelled stud fees, the market decline in California, and other factors forced Stremmel to sell all his thoroughbred holdings. The sire Andy K. was sold privately, and most of the broodmares and their foals were sold at a special auction. GOLDEN GATE FIELDS, Albany, Calif., May 13. — The only horses now at Golden Gate Fields to be involved in The Jockey Clubs ruling suspending 17 horses registered by William Stremmel, owner of the Glen Cove Stud at Vallejo, is the Verde.! Farms Hen Sprig. No copy of The Jockey Clubs ruling has yet reached the California Horse Racing Board, but the stewards at Golden Gate Fields said the further entry of the filly would be refused until the suspension is lifted. Stremmel could not be reached here today for comment. It is understood that the New York ruling was based on the doubtful paternity of Ortello Red, King Ortello, Contractor and Ortello Me. They were allegedly represented to The Jockey Club as having been sired by the Italian stallion Ortello, whom investigators have asserted was sterile. The inquiry, it is said, has been going on for several months.