Weighing In: Function of Belmont Is to Establish a Champion; Trust Native Dancer to Confirm Preakness Win; Jamie K. Seen as Chief Obstacle in Grays Path; Both Can Stay; Which Colt Has the Most Class?, Daily Racing Form, 1953-06-13


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WEIGHING IN By OSCAR OTIS BELMONT PARK Elmont L I N Y June 12 Tomorrow is Belmont Stakes Day and as has been repeated ad infinitum this is the classic race of the year for American threeyear olds Sometimes the Belmont is a fine contest nearly always fine contest or not it crowns the career of a fine thoroughbred usually the best of the age in this country Over a long period the results of Belmont renewals have justified any compliments paid this stake by the infallible measure of the stud On re ¬ tirement Belmont Stakes winners reproduce themselves with a regularity that must be significant nor has our turf found any truer test of thoroughbred quality Occa ¬ sionally as when Man o War Count Fleet or Citation have triumphed in this gruelling mile and a half the Belmont is less a race than a supreme exhibition the pleasure derived from watching it being that of con ¬ firming the superlatives bestowed on some extraordinary horse The trio mentioned were confidently expected to win and win they did but it was the style in which this feat was accomplished the vast margin of superiority in ¬ dicated that engraved these victories indelibly in the memories of spectators For better or worse we know a good deal concerning the merits or demerits of each gen ¬ eration by the time Belmont Stakes Day rolls around and the factor of suspense so important to most races may be lacking But as in so many other respects the Bel ¬ mont is a standing exception to the rule for this excep ¬ tional race we do not require suspense The function of the Belmont is to establish a champion or to reveal the latent weakness depriving some overpraised young horse of that rare distinction distinctionA A A A AThis This year Native Dancer is the colt who will be on trial So far both as a twoyearold and this spring as Function of Belmont Is to Establish a Champion ChampionTrust Trust Native Dancer to Confirm Preakness Win WinJamie Wins s Jamie K Seen as Chief Obstacle in Grays Path PathBoth Both Can Stay Which Colt Has the Most Class Classa a threeyearold Alfred Vanderbilts homebred gray has done all that could be expected of him his defeat in the Kentucky Derby carrying a perfectly valid excuse Na ¬ tive Dancer then has only this last hurdle to clear before entering the records as the latest outstanding example of the breed Should he take the final obstacle in the long course with the ease anticipated by his many admirers Native Dancer will have added ability at a distance to all his other qualifications he will be ready for a stud career at Sagamore Farm at any time his owner chooses to re ¬ tire him The task that the gray colt will face tomorrow may prove far less simple than it was for any of his great predecessors mentioned in the preceding paragraph and it is just this element of doubt that lends this particular renewal of the Belmont Stakes a quality of uncertainty that has frequently been missing in the past This time two factors are present to complicate matters first and foremost there is the mile and a half distance of the race a route never travelled by Native Dancer and for which many persist in believing that his bloodlines may not qualify him Then and by no means to be ignored there is Jamie K who stands as a fleshandblood obstacle and who needs to improve but a little bit off his recent fine Preakness effort to shake the tower of hope built around the prospective champion to its very foundation Jamie K has come to himself fast in the last few weeks Last winter in Florida James Norris son of the hitherto obscure stallion Crowfoot suffered from a seri ¬ ous infection and there was a marked and prolonged reaction to the quantities of sulf a drug employed to com ¬ bat it Jamie K was never himself L the South nor was it until well along in this current Belmont meeting that he began to assume his true stature as a major candidate for classic honors The first hint that he might yet prove that kind of a colt came one afternoon when he was all but left at the post in an allowance event for threeyear olds and up his chief competitor being the pretty fair fouryearold from Max Hirschs barn Risque Rouge to whom he was conceding considerable weight on the scale On the backstretch in this mile and a sixteenth trip Jamie K may have trailed his field by as much as half a furlong In any case Eddie Arcaro and his mount Jamie K appeared hopelessly out of it Ar caro did not despair By a masterful example of rating he picked up the laggards one by one between the turns and at the head of the homestretch even though it still looked as if Risque Rougewas home free it was now evident that Jamie K had a slim very slim chance To make a long story short Jamie K nailed the fouryearold right on the winning post Unless Risque Rouge had gone back deplorably that was a very significant performance performanceA A A A ABefore Before Arcaro had had time to weigh out in that race predictions were flying around the Belmont press box that Jamie K would be that jockeys choice for a Preak ¬ ness mount These prophecies were not confirmed until Jamie K and Arcaro had combined for another successful outing here on Long Island this race being less sensation ¬ al than the other but fully as revealing where the Crow ¬ foot colts steady improvement was concerned In this second race Arcaro got Jamie K away well but again againCoflffnuerf Coflffnuerf on Page FortyNine WEIGHING IN INBy By EVAN SHEPMAN Continued from Page FiftyTwo FiftyTwoit it was his fine finishing power that was impressive By the time jockey and colt came out for the Preakness at Baltimore Arcaro was thoroughly acquainted with Jamie K knowing just what he could de ¬ mand of him and what response to expect As all the world knows Native Dancer was the Preakness winner by a neck Jamie K second and Royal Bay Gem a distant third Arcaro has indicated that his plan of at ¬ tack miscarried somewhat when he was forced to make a premature move and that losing ground on the turn for home when he went a little wide rather than risk taking the awkward Jamie K through a narrow gap cost them more than he could regain in the drive In a race it is rare indeed that a plan of at ¬ tack can be followed to the letter a cer ¬ tain margin has to be allowed for the in ¬ trusion of the unexpected Excuses apart the cold fact was that Jamie K made a bold bid and did not quite make it Native Dancer holding him safe through the final crucial furlong of the Preakness Native Dancer finished in the Kentucky Derby and again in the recent Preakness as if distance had no terrors for him We have all seen examples of thoroughly good colts whose limit was a mile or a mile and an eighth we know what happens to this sort when they are sent beyond their limit the picture of the downfall of one or another of them being all too vivid in our memory We believe that we have seen enough of Native Dancer by now to know that this is not his Achilles heeL The combination of genes inherited from the gray colts ances ¬ tors must stress the rare staying elements in his immediate pedigree and as far as they are concerned perhaps he may be consid ¬ ered a new type In Jamie K he will be meeting another stayer and the result of tomorrows race should hinge on which colt possesses the most inherent class not on which colt can stay They both can stay For what importance it has we trust Native Dancer to confirm the verdict of the Preak ¬ ness Right from the beginning we have regarded this one as an outstanding colt nor do we expect to be forced to change our mind tomorrow Native Dancers name should join those of the many other brilliant thoroughbreds who by whining the Bel ¬ mont have assured themselves their niche in American turf history

Persistent Link: https://drf.uky.edu/catalog/1950s/drf1953061301/drf1953061301_52_2
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Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800