Weight Carrying: What It Means--IV., Daily Racing Form, 1943-05-26


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Weight Carrying What It MeansIV MeansIVBy By SALYATOR In considering the capacity of race horses to carry high and even excessive weights the colonialism that still af ¬ flicts this country in many ways and always to its detriment and that of its breed of horses has not failed to dem ¬ onstrate itself befog the issue and dis ¬ tort the facts v vIt It has been from time immemorial the practice of many American turf writers to glorify the weightcarrying feats of inespecial English and Australian horses and at the same time to depreciate those of our own thoroughbreds As a matter of realism such a procedure has no justifica ¬ tion whatever in either fact or theory when the data are examined and coordinated coordinatedThe The truth is there is no better weight carrier in the world than the American thoroughbred the proof of this being abundant when the records are assem ¬ bled and sifted and their true inwardness made plain plainIt It is now about twenty years ago that the writer having become both weary and disgusted with this persistent depreciation of our own horses for the glorification of foreign ones decided to throw some search ¬ lights upon it In consequence we com ¬ piled and published In Daily Racing Form a series of tables bringing out the real situation situationForeign Foreign and American Stakes StakesAs As their basis lists of the winners of the three great historic English handi ¬ caps the City and Suburban prototype of our Suburban the Cesarewitch and the Cambridgeshire were taken as testing ma ¬ terial The firstnamed was founded in 1851 the two latter in 1839 The weights carried by all the winners were tabulated and averaged averagedThen Then the list of winners of the Mel ¬ bourne Cup was subjected to the same process It is not by the way generally understood that this farfamed event is a handicap owing to the Cup designa ¬ tion attached to it and the fact that it is over the long distance of two miles In ¬ stead many American turfmen have sup ¬ posed that it was either a weightforage race with penalties and allowances or one for which a special scale of fixed weights prevailed But such is not the fact The Melbourne Cup is a fullfledged handicap and always has been since first run in 1861 1861We We then took the tables of winners of the two great historic American handi ¬ caps the Suburban and the Brooklyn this being long before such events as the Santa Anita Widener etc of recent years were first run runHaving Having averaged the imposts carried by the winners of all these great handi ¬ caps English American and Australian the fact stood out that the average weight carried by the American handicap winners was heavier than that of either the Eng ¬ lish or the Australian winners Howls tif Rage Produced ProducedWhen When these tables and facts were pub ¬ lished in Daily Racing Form they pro ¬ duced what were literally howls of rage arrd protest from the glorifiers of the foreign horses Endeavors were made to nullify them but without success There the facts and figures stood And they could not be either argued hooted or flirted out of existence existenceThe The propagandists for the English horses finally boiled down to the very lame excuse that the best horses over there were not run in handicaps but appeared in classics and similar events only whereas the best American horses were as a rule raced in our big handicaps Hence the comparison was unfair deceptive etc etc etcThe The great trouble with this very sophis ¬ tical argument was that it wouldnt wash It wasnt fast color colorAs As all persons familiar with English turf history well know up to a comparatively recent period the greatest English horses did run in the great handicaps handicapsHandicap Handicap Defeats Galling GallingThe The list of them that did so is long and notable and includes such famous ones as Lanercost FaughaBallagh Clarion Dr Syntax Mulatto Daniel ORourke Under ¬ hand See Saw Blue Gown Sterling Ison omy Rosebery Tristan JBend Or Bendigo Plaisanterie La Fleche Marco Best Man Winkfields Pride Ellersdale Weathergage Hampton Corisande Cardihal York Chip ¬ pendale Robert the Devil St Gatien Cor rie Roy Carlton Childwick Fisherman Adventurer Argonaut Speculum Bertram Cremorne Thunder Master Kildare The bais Royal Hampton Bay Ronald and many many others But one chilly result kept transpiring namely that altogether too many of them were getting beaten in these handicaps and often very badly Which was ex ¬ tremely illbefitting the reputations with which it was desired that they should retire to the stud studNow Now the English are the mpst practiced land adept facesavers in the world And as they were carefully and patiently build ¬ ing up the prestige of their crack horses as the worlds greatest and most Incom ¬ parable they decided upon a new system of protecting them themWhich Which was nothing less than to discon ¬ tinue the running of the classic and semi classic winners in the big handicaps or any handicaps at all and to set them apart in a class by themselves as too high and mighty to take part in such cheap races Also to stigmatize the winners of handi ¬ caps arid the horses that ran in them as mere handicappers ineffably inferior thereby saving their classic pets from the trouncings they had been receiving in the past and erecting around them a sort of sanctuary a holy of holies which gave them an immense advantage that Sther wise they could never have secured securedDifferent Different Situation in Australia AustraliaWhen When Australia was turned to a differ ¬ ent situation arose It was impossible to argue that the best horses there did not try for the Melbourne Cup for the exact opposite was the case It is the supreme event of the Antipodes whose winning means incomparably more than that of any of the socalled classics of Down Under so some other argument had to be trumped up to offset the showing of the American horses horsesThe The subterfuge was fallen back upon of picking out a few isolated cases of extreme weightcarrying by Melbourne Cup win ¬ ners and in especial the 145 pounds car ¬ ried by Carbine back in 1890 playing them up with trumpets and drums and ignoring all the others In this way the endeavor was made to discredit the truth which the naked facts had disclosed and by tricky manipulations of a few handpicked ones pervert the actualities that existed existedNow Now the truth about the muchvaunted superiority of the Australian horses as weightcarriers does not square with the claims of their press agents The most cursory examination of the table of win ¬ ners of the Melbourne Cup establishes that beyond dispute disputeBetter Better Weight Carriers Here HereThis This famous race was established in 1861 or 72 years ago and has now been run just 82 times And through all that long stretch of years it has been Avon by horses carrying 120 pounds or more but 16 times If we turn to our own Suburban which was not founded until 1884 and has been run but 59 times we find thatit has been won no less than 26 times by horses so weighted weightedIt It is of course true that the Melbourne Cup is a twomile race the Suburban one of but a mile and a quarter But this is relatively unimportant in view of the dem ¬ onstrated fact that genuine weightcarriers can negotiate the longer distance as well as the shorter one if they are true stayers stayersIf If we take as a laboratory test the lists of winners of the two great English com ¬ panion handicaps they bring out the fact that whereas the Cesarewitch is over the long route of two miles twentyfour yards it has twice been won by horses carrying 131 pounds the record weight while no horse carrying more than 127 pounds has ever won the Cambridgeshire though it is only a ninefurlong race or a furlong shorter even than our Suburban SuburbanContrasting Contrasting Two Great Races RacesThe The recent history of the Melbourne Cup fails altogether to sustain the claims made for the superiority of the Antipodean horse as a weight carrier carrierThe The last instance in which a heavy ¬ weight carried it off was of 1934 when Peter Pan succeeded under 135 pounds poundsIn In the eight subsequent renewals cover ¬ ing the years 1935 to 1942 inclusive the winners have carried the following weights 109 110 117 116 97 110 104 and 100 pounds each eachNot Not only that of the sixteen horses that have placed second and third only four have carried as much as 120 pounds Add ¬ ing the eight winners out of a total of twentyfour horses finishing onetwothree only four have had up as much as 120 pounds Where oh where were the wonderful weightcarriers weightcarriersContrast Contrast this with bur own Suburban Handicap HandicapDuring During the past eight years it has been won four times by horses carrying 120 to 127 pounds Four others have Tun second Three others have run third Making a total of eleven out of twentyfour twentyfourOr Or take the Brooklyn BrooklynDuring During the past eight years it has been won no less than five times by horses car ¬ rying from 136 down to 122 pounds Only one horse carrying as much as 120 pounds has run second but four have run third for a total of ten out of twentyfour twentyfourIn In the next article of this series some interesting facts will be brought out which illustrate the much greater advantages that the foreign horses enjoy over the American in the matter of courses over which they have performed

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Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800