Racing Patronized by Wealthy Men Nowadays for Sports Sake Alone, Daily Racing Form, 1915-08-25


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* * 4, * RACING PATRONIZED BY WEALTHY MEN NOWADAYS FOR SPORTS SAKE ALONE , 4. in tl at j* is " in it its 6 n g tl ft t» a at w a h h 1» ■ ■ ii t I f r I I u A iV c 1 I - a l [ • 1 1 i I B - li - s Saratoga Springs. N. Y.. August 24. — Thomas Hitchcock, who is a member of the executive committee of the Saratoga Association for the Improvement of the Breed of Horses and well known throughout the United States as a many-sided sportsman. But whose chief activities of recent years have been in the cross-country branch of the turf, one of those who sees a brilliant future for racing this country. •"With the meeting at this point entering upon linal weeks." said Mr. Hitchcock, "1 am struck forcibly with the increasing interest which is beiag manifested in the sjiort not only by those who re gard it as a wholesome amusement which keeps them outdoors, but also by the many who come from the cities, towns, villages and the adjacent country. Entirely new conditions confront the turf the present time as compared with those under which it operated some years ago. The sport then attracted a number of our most desirable citizens, but it ean safely be asserted that at no time in the history of racing have so many men of wealth and leisure been interested in racing as at present. Am ateur sport has contributed a great deal to this state of affairs, associations like Piping Bock hav ing been Instrumental in cultivating a spirit of rivalry which has brought out in the fullest sense the sportsmaaUke qualities which are so necessary for succo-s in any sport. Among those who are racing lor the pure sport of it might be mentioned: H. L. Pratt. J. E. Mavis, the Greentree Stable, the Deep Bun Stable. NorthWOOd Stable, under which name the horses of Mortimer SchitT of Kuliu. Loeli Company are raced: Shoshone Stable, the mini de course of "W. B. toe: Samuel WillitS, George D. Widener. Kdward M. Weld. John Beard, J. I. Flanagan. Thomas Fortune Byan. Bohert L. Gerry, Edward F. Whitney, a former partner of .1. I. Mor gaa a Co.: F- Ambrose "lark and Ivan Fox. The majority of these men were unknown to the turf few- years ago and it is safe to assert that their number" will be added to before the beginning of next season as there is a growing fondness for rnc- ing in the licst sense of the word. All of these men are in it lor the love of the horse and for the recreation it brings to them. I take it as ■ of the healthiest signs of the times, as they are the type . of men we need, if racing is to be perpetuated and I achieve the Importance which it deserves. . "There araa a time when the speculative part of racing was obnoxiously prominent, but that day is ; happily past. Speculation we shall always have as 1 it is part of our human nature. It is something : that we may restrict, but r.ever eliminate. Formerly it controlled and spoilt was secondary, but this 1 season I notice that everybody wants to see the horses and there was ■ large gallery while Regret 1 and Thunderer were being saddled on Wednesday that I an recall in the time when racing was at its 1 height in New York. Those from the country dis-B iricts who realize the importance of breeding good I horses were amazed al the size and muscular devel-■i opment of this pair. It was an object lesson to 1 them that horses of this type could be bred In the adjacent state of New Jersey. It demonstrated the " benefits of care and feeding in a manner that was most convincing." "I was impressed with what Thomas Welsh said 1 — 7 ~ -« . I . ; 1 : 1 1 1 I 1 " 1 recently about horse breeding in France. continued Mr. Hitchcock, "and also with his suggestion that New York slate would be rendering the agricultural communities a service by offering prizes at the fairs for contests between half-bred horses. Mr. Welsh probably had in mind flat racing only and while that would be useful. 1 think the bread would be Improved still more and the market broadened if races over obstacles were added. There is no horse so scarce today in the markets of the world as the fine type of hunter and especially the heavyweight animal ■ this class. Englands hunter supply has been taken for war purposes — 180.000 head of hunter-, thoroughbreds geldings only and other horses of saddle type having been commandeered since tin- outbreak of hostilities. If we can breed successors to these horses the market is ours at virtually our own figures provided we teach them the rudiments of the game for which they are in tended. Kvery fanners boy knows how to ride and if he1 bad the incentive of breeding a horse that could win some of the races at his own fair, and back of that a prospective market for his mare or geldings, it wouldnt tie long till we had the keenest sort of sportsmen iu the embryo ready for development along proper lines. ■It isnt t.i be expected that every foal by a thoroughbred stallion from a cold-blooded mare would develop into a hunter, for there is the usual percentage of culls in all lines of breeding endeavor. whether it be horses, cattle, sheep. d"gs or chickens, but a great percentage of I he failures would no doubt make cavalry remounts for the army, and we are going to need them badly in the near future. The recent announcement that the United Slates government has an option on 700 head of prospective rene. nnts in Virginia. West Virginia and Maryland, where the governments own thoroughbreds, saddlers and trotters have been standing, is hardly satisfying to those who read the times aright. General Scott thought that 2. I00 head would tto required annually in times of peace. We shall need many times 2,000 head annually if the program of preparedness now liemg urged by sonic of the most keen vjsioned of our people is adopted." "The farmer of the Catted States." said Mr. Hitchcock in conclusion, "is awakening to ihe. ne- te sally o; giving as much attention to his hones as he does to his cattle, sheep and other live Stock. Mosl of them either own outright or have a share in pure blooded males and would no" think of using anything else. The price of ser h e Ices has largely guided them in the past in connection with their horse-breeding ventures, but the cam paign of education which had its inception in the war which demonstrated forcibly the need of horses of a particular type has taught them that they must follow in the lines of proven ipiality in order t achieve SOCeesa. In France every man who tills tin- soil breeds a mare or two. The mares do their daily stint of labor almost until foaling time and resume their work shortly after maternity, and the foals are all the hardier and better for following their dams in the fields. We could with profit foi- low the example of this remarkable nation in its horse-breeding system, so interestingly told of re- eently by Mr. Welsh. France has found racing a necessity because it is only by racing that we make progress in horse-breeding, and what France has done we can do." j ,

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