Keenes Opinion of His Best Horses: Gives an English Newspaper Entertaining Statement-The Turf in General Also, Daily Racing Form, 1908-01-24


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KEENES OPINION OF HIS BEST HORSES. Gives an English Newspaper Entertaining Statement — The Turf in General Alto. An interview with James 1. Keene from England is going some distance for home news, but one that appeared in the London S|M rtsman recently, sent ou by its New York correspondent, is decidedly interesting and in part as follows: "Attributing his winnings principally to Colin, the champion two-year-old by Commando, out of Pastorella, and to Ballot and leter Pan. the three-year-olds. 1 asked how these horses compared with others here, especially Salvidere. De Muud and 1raiik Gill by Collar. "Mr. Keene immediately replied: I really do not care to compare mine with any of them, but you know what Colin has dona. Now. as to the three-year-olds and the talk of Frank Will and Salvidere. I believe I am warranted in sayiug that no matter where you looked, leter Ban was the best three-year-old of the season. He was such a gigantic horse and so heavy that be required a tremeudous amount of work and racing to get him into pro|»er condition, so I have sent him out to Major Daiugerfield. and he will go to the stud. Ballot tby Yoter. out of Ceritoi. however, will race next year, and then we will see more definitely what he is capable of. He is a realiy charming horse and. although he was l eaten by Salvidere. 1 think that after leter Iau he was the best three-year-old we had. He had a little trouble in lhe throat early in the season and that affected him somewhat right along, but at a utile and a half I thiuk he was unbeatable. As to Peter Pan. although the papers seem to have decided the question. I have not yet settled with Major Daiugerfield how I will dispose of the sralliou this year, but I Itiiuk it is extremely pro!. aide that the horse will be put to Pastor Ha. ■Mention of the close of the season gave me an opportunity of asking how the American compared with the English turf at present. " Well. said Mr. Keene. after a minutes hesitation. T have some very strong opinions on that subject, but I do not know that I care to give them in detail now. I think, however, we «ue gradually improving, ami we will continue to improve, but we want more votaries of the turf — we want them the same as in England. We want more gentlemen to become interested here and maintain the s[iort on a high level — gentlemen who will race for the s|KH-t and not for the mere money. Of course, it is very nice to win and to win money in stakes, but I would like to see more wealthy and independent gentlemen owning here than at present. We have not very many to depend upon and the Jockey Club has a good deal to contend with. " "There are the jockeys. I do not think it is a question of lightweights or continuous riding with them. They simply get into bad hands, they are flattered and pitted and spoiled and just as soon as they should become useful, they become worthless. We have trouble with them and with others, but, "as I have remarked. I think we are improving. - " T was. I may say. correctly quoted in The Sportsman after the Futurity, when I said that under similar circumstances iu England my colt, Colin, would have liecu M to 1 on instead of 5 to 2. a price offered on account of the unfair tactics pursued here, especially by jockeys. Iteally. no .price could have represented Colin — he was so immeasurably superior to the others. The question of jockeys is a serious one. As for my own stable. I have engaged Notter for next season and up to the present I think he is all right and a gixxl boy. " I would not say we do not compare favorably, but while we have many good owners. I would like to see. as 1 have said, more votaries — gentlemen who would race for tfio love of the sport alone. In that direction, of course. England is ahead of us. "Ih you intend to race iu England next season?" I asked. " "Weli. I dont know that yet. he answered. Of course. I have always entered horses in the big races and keep a few in training there, but I cannot say how they will turn out. There is Colin, for instance. I never kuew how lie would turn out. and. of course, didnt enter him. Colin un doubtedly would have won the Derby — not the slightest doubt about it. As in everything else, there is a lot of luck iu it. though I supi ose I cannot complain. And then he significantly added: "Yes. I think .Mr. Croker was lucky to win the I lerliy — very lucky. "Regarding training operations. Mr. Keene spoke highly of Felix Leach, of Newmarket, and referred particularly to the ability of Sam Darling, who trained llisguise. As to his stable at Shccps-head Bay. he said he had a very promising lot of MM there in charge of James Howe. The latter had now been training for him twelve years and he thought he was fortunate in having his services. Of course. Ballot and Colin arc the stars of the stable, but Mr. Keene. iu kindly inviting me to I visit the training quarters, gave me a tip which, through The Sportsman, will settle a much-vexed question bare. An exceptionally fast aud finely built youngster at Sheepshead Bay has been spotted by other trainers, and rail birds" and serious disputes have arisen as to whether he is a I colt by Disguise — St. Mildred, or one by Voter — Costume, lie is neither one nor the oilier. 1 was flsked to look out i specially tor Celt, by Commando -Maid of Erin, by Aniphion -Cerito. "This youngster. said the owuer. "will. I think, be a bit of , Continued ou becoud puge.j KEENES OPINION OF HIS BEST HORSES. • Continued from lirst page. ■ surprise next year, and is the most promising we e have. "Remembering that during his career Mr. Keene s has owned such celebrities as Foxhall, Commando. . Domino. Voter, St. Cloud, Sysonby. In addition 1 to those now in training, I ventured to put the B I inn- honored question: Well, after all, which 1 do you think was actually the best you ever r « w lied ■ " Ah. he replied, it would be very hard to tell. Some were good one day and some another. I am afraid I could not undertake lo say definitely which Ma the best. At all events. I never said Com-mando. He was a good horse, and won some races, loo. liesiiles breeding Colin. I have been fortunate in owning some good ones; and as Mr. Keene intuitively glanced towards Foxhalls portrait and 1 some of the others. 1 could well understand the difficulty . lie would have in making a choice from the B gi indesi lot of race horses probably ever owned by f oik* man."

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