On the Wire: Balmoral Meet Averaging 52,000 Daily Increase of 09,000 over Lincoln in 54 Farrell, Daily Racing Form, 1955-06-09


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On the Wire By Hugh J. McGuire J Balmoral Meet Averaging 52,000 Daily Increase of 09,000 Over Lincoln in 54 Farrell Happy of Transfer to Washington WASHINGTON PARK, Homewood, 111., June 8.— There is ample evidence in several phases of racing that the decision to~transfer the operation of Balmoral frnm T.inpnln WaIHs tn Wncliimf. ton Park was a happy inspiration. The financial results alone are sufficient to justify the transfer, and these show a tremendous increase in mutuel play here under the Lindheimer management. During the first 18 days of this meeting, or through Saturday, 7,139,906 passed through the mutuels here for an average of about 52,000 daily. This is in Fields meeting of last year when the 30-day session saw I 9,310,741 wagered for an average of 43,691. The" increase reached about 09,000 per day, which should also be good news to the Illinois state treasurer. One person vitally affected by the transfer of operations and jubilant over the results, is racing secretary Pat Farrell, although Farrell does not expect the benefits to be fully evident until next and following years. The transfer was effected late in the season after many stables had already mapped out racing schedules elsewhere. Despite this, the promise of a coordinated 97-day session of Balmoral-Arlington-Washington lured many stables to this area, with the result that many races originally scheduled in the condition book fill and are contested. This provides a considerable assistance to trainers in that they are able to point their charges for a definite objective, with some assurance that when the day for the race comes around it will be on the program. Great Boost to Illinois Racing Farrell believes that the coordinated dates, with their dovetailed stakes programs, is the greatest boost that racing in the area has received within his memory. Despite the lateness of the fulfillment of the plan and considerable unkind weather, entries have been closing on time. One area that had presented stiff competition to Chicago was New Jersey with its 150 days of the sport at three major tracks. Farrell points out that the New Jersey tracks operate independently of each other, whereas here the race programs, including lush stakes, are coordinated. Despite the evidence to the contrary that has piled up in recent months, Farrell is unwilling to admit that foreign-bred horses will continue to dominate races over the turf courses. He notes that more and more trainers are sending American-bred horses over the grass, and are even asking for this type of contest. Farrell is of the belief v that when the aversion to turf racing, held by many trainers, has been broken down, the American-breds will run the imports "into a gopher hole." He points out that the invaders are at a disadvantage in that they will have to become acclimated not only to the weather but to other American practices, such as making the turns counter-clockwise. He notes also that there are a considerable number of American -bred racers who fall short of greatness on the dirt tracks, but who "move up" when" sent over grass. When more and more such horses teach their trainers that there is a lucrative field for them on grass, Farrell is confident that the tide will turn in favor of the domestic product. Turf courses in this country have reached a condition where they have been praised by experts from abroad, and we are told that the records indicate that wagering on grass racing, particularly in long races, is in excess of that on races of similar caliber on dirt strips. This would appear to place the stamp of approval of the racing public on the infield sport and, after all, the man who eventually pays the bills is entitled to get what he prefers. Alexandra Successful Via Claiming Blank As long as we can" recall, there has always been in racing the trainer who makes a success of his profession by liberal use of the claiming blank. Whether this man is looked upon as a menace to the,sport or as a smart businessman operating within the rules and doing his part to insure that horses run where they belong, is a matter—of individual opinion. Here in charge of the string of a dozen horses, the property of Chicago meat packer, S. A. Alexander, is veteran conditioner George Alexandra, who, a. few years ago, had earned the then current title of "king of the halter-men." Alexandra calne from a family of English horsemen, and before he turned to training was a jockey. He was the nations leading trainer in 1936 and several times was second or third in that race. He was leading trainer in Canada for 14 consecutive years, and for seven years in Cuba and has led the conditioners at various times at practically every course at which he raced. During his career he estimates that he has saddled 2,000 winners and has claimed 1,200 horses. Among the horses of prominence that he raced were Quickly, the dam ! of Count Fleet, and a notorious rogue called Care Free, a son of Colin, who won 83 races. Claimed from Alexandra on three occasions, Care Free failed to win for his new owners and arrived back in the Alexandra barn for a sum considerably less than -that for which he was claimed. We have in mind a couple of stories about Alexandra that we will pass on as space permits.

Persistent Link: https://drf.uky.edu/catalog/1950s/drf1955060901/drf1955060901_48_1
Local Identifier: drf1955060901_48_1
Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800