Here and There on the Turf: Horses of This Year No Champion Two-Year-Old Sentiment Not Yet Dead, Daily Racing Form, 1922-08-15


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Mere and There on the Turf Horses of This Year. No Champion Two-Year-Old. Sentiment Not Yet Dead. As time goes on and one stake race for two-year-olds after another is decided the championship seems to come no nearer a solution. In a stake, which brings the leaders of the division together, weight adjustments generally decide the result. Up to the beginning of the Saratoga meeting Bud Lerner was the only one of the two-year-olds which had succeeded in conceding weight to others of stake race quality and winning. Then Martingale, in the United States Hotel Stakes, carried the crushing impost of 130 pounds to victory and assumed at once a new importanve among the juveniles. Then the Saratoga Special at even -weights brought together the best field of two-year-olds which has faced the starter this year and Goshawk, which had failed to concede weight to Martingale and Bud Lerner in the Tremont Stakes at Aqueduct, beat both of them at equal weights. The Special will be considered in some quarters as clarifying the situation, but it really complicates it. The running practically eliminates Martingale from the high consideration to which his United States Hotel Stakes victory entitled him. He had no mishaps in Saturdays running, allowing Goshawk to run him into exhaustion and finishing a tired fourth. Bud Lerner was shuf-lled back at the start, but probably ran his race anyway, as Sande saved ground with him when possible. But McKee, which finished second, overcame enough interference to make his performance rather impressive. Of the others in the .field Messenger and Rialto need more racing experience before their real capacity is settled. Cartoonist, Tall Timber and Body Guard are probably just below the first llight. If Goshawk has developed sufficiently since his early racing to go on and win in a similar field with penalties to carry, he will clinch his present position at the top, but he failed to do this once before and it is to be assumed that he will probably fail again. This review of the significance . of Saturdays race leads to the conclusion that 1922 may close without a conceded two-year-old champion. Either the youngsters of the year are generally lacking in high class, or else there are a number of them far above the average. The best of tnem appear to be evenly matched and the fact that so many have been kept ouc of racing by the epidemic has delayed the elimination process . until there seems little prospect in sight for any definite decision. Certainly if there is a 1922 edition of the 1921 Morvich he has failed to appear on the racing scene as yet. Kentuckians thought they had found him in Donges, which won his first two victories at long odds, just as the Block colt did last year; but Donges went up to Canada and met with several defeats. The West has sent few two-year-olds to the post during the Saratoga meeting which can threaten serious competition with the best of the East. Dust Flower won the Flash Stakes on the opening day, but she defeated none of the real leaders. Anna M. Humphrey, her stable mate, hailed as a champion in the "West, has not faced the barrier at the Spa as yet. The colts, Donges and Cherokee, recognized as the best of the Kentucky season, have not started at Saratoga. Donges is not eligible for any of the big stakes. So far as the two-year-olds are concerned it looks like a good year for the East. The westerners have strengthened their hand in the three-year-old competition by C. W. Clarks acquisition of Whiskaway, but in the handicap division they are still unable to offer strong contention to the best of the eastern-owned horses. Grey Lag remains the head of the handicap division since defeating Exterminator decisively in the Saratoga Handicap and Mad Hatter, on the strength of his showing in the Champlain Handicap Saturday, seems to be close to the form which made him a dangerous factor in the class last year. The handicap division, however, is weak at present and there seems to be little hope for any marked improvement during the present -ear. Next year the present years three-year-olds will enter actively into competition with the older horses and a marked strengthening of the division may result. The 1922 three-year-olds, on the whole, seem to be of good average class. There is no champion as yet, but Whiskaway, Bunting, Kai-Sang and several others which have been kept out of competition by the epidemic and injuries are the chief claimants to the title. : No three-year-old can win .his way to the top of the division without beating the C. W. Clark purchase, but Lucky Hour, Run-star and Runatell, as well as Bunting, all appear to be fast enough to offer "Whisk -away considerable of an argument. Whether the son of "Whisk Broom II. -and Inaugural can concede weight to these horses and win is the chief question at present. Kai-Sang of the Rancocas stable, in spite of the fact that handicapper Vosburgh assigned him to the top impost in the Saranac Handicap to be run Tuesday, has yet to prove his real worth as a three-year-old. An incident of no great importance in itself, which gave as encouraging index to the survival of sentiment on the turf in these days of big prizes and commercialism has just been brought to a satisfying close in England. Lord Glanely sold his twenty-three-year-old mare, Sceptre, worn out and useless for breeding, to a Brazilian breeder for export. J Immediately there was a storm of protest j from turfmen and breeders throughout England. Indignant letters were written to the j sporting press; petitions of protest were circulated and altogether a terrific furore resulted. This violent opposition to the sale could hae had no basis whatever in commercial or practical considerations. The mare had been pronounced by veterinary authorities unable to produce another foal. All that she had to recommend her was her wonderful racing record. But her threatened expatriation was denounced as violently as though an act of treason was about to be committed. Lord Glanely, from all accounts a thorough sportsman, was soon influenced by the disturbance to cancel the sale and Sceptre will pass the remainder of her days in the land of her triumphs. A victory for sentiment on the turf, in these days of big money, is worthy of note wherever it occurs. That sucn a tiling should happen in England, where the fallacies of the "figure system" have been transmuted into gold through the medium of breeding propaganda is rather amazing.

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