Bloody Sunday in Northern Ireland.
Norm Kirk, MP for Lyttleton, is elected Prime Mnister.
Container shipping services begin between NZ and the UK.
The Accident Compensation Act brings fault-free accident coverage.
The Equal Pay Act aims to extend equal pay for women to the private sector
The last NZ forces are withdrawn from Vietman.
September 30 - New Town Hall complex and James Hay Theatre opens.
Credit: Ch-Ch City Libraries
SOURCE OF THE PACING GAIT
The history of the pacing horse is as old as antiquity. The changes that have been wrought in the status of the pacer during the last 100 years it truly remarkable. To many who are not conversant with the business, and who have not been actively engaged in the sport, the causes and methods that have been adopted to bring the lateral-gaited horse to the front are an absorbing study.
Some have maintained that the pace is an artificial and cultivated gait. The ancient story that the pacing instinct sprang from the Narragansett pacer is a myth. Some wiseacres have maintained that the original pacer in America, while being taken by ship from Egypt, was 'storm struck,' the pacer being thrown overboard in mid-ocean; and after 10 days the horse was found on the coast of Newfoundland, where he had swum ashore, and that he was found eating rushes on a sand-bar, from where he was rescued and taken to Narragansett Bay.
The idea that the pace is a cultivated gait, and that the trotter antedates the pacer, is absurd. The pacer antedated the trotter by thousands of years. History tells us so.
On the summit of the Acropolis in Athens stand the ruins of the Parthenon, a magnificent temple erected to the goddess Minerva. The building was commenced in the year BC 437, and was completed five years afterwards. All the statuary was the work of the famous Phidias and his scholars. It was made from Pentelic marble. This noted building resisted the ravages of time, and had in turn been converted to a Christian temple and a Turkish mosque. In 1676 it was still entire, but in 1687 Athens was beseiged by the Venetians and the Parthenon was hopelessly wrecked. As a ruin it became the prey of the Turks and other devastators. In order to save some of what remained of it's precious works, Lord Elgin, about the year 1800, brought home to England some portions of the frieze of the temple, with other works of Phidias in marble. He sold them to the Government and they are now preserved in the British Museum.
The frieze is a most interesting subect of study, not only as a specimen of Greek art of the period of Pericules, but as a historic record of the type and action of the Greek horses of that day. It consists of a series of white marble slabs, about four feet wide, upon which are sculptured in high relief the heroes and defenders of Athens, mounted on horses, and the horses are all pacing and distinctly show the pacing attitude.
This is the first record of the pacer, and it is now over 2340 years old. The statuary of the early ages furnished some excellent illustrations of the gait of the horses of that period of the world's history. The four bronze horses on St Marks in Venice are known throughout the world, and they are all in the pacing attitude. The true date of these horses is lost in history, but it is pretty certain that they were cast in Rome about the beginning of the Christian era. Their capture in Rome and transfer to Constantinople, then their capture by the Venetians and transfer to Venice, next their capture by Napoleon and transfer to Paris, and then their restoration to Venice, are all matters of history.
In the first half of the seventeenth century pacers were popular, common and abounded everywhere in England. In the second half of the eigtheenth century not one could be found in all Britian! Of all the facts that are known and established in history of the English horse, the wiping out of the pacer is the most striking and significant. The little English pacers that had been the favourite of kings and princes for so many years were submerged in the strains of Saracenic blood that flowed in upon them, and their only legitimate descendants left upon the face of the earth found homes in the American colonies.
Their blood was one of the principal elements in the foundation of the English racehorse, but the 'lateral-action' in his progeny was esteemed a bar sinister on the escutcheon of the stallions, and it was sought to cover it up with something more fashionable in name. The result was that the little pacer, 'having no friends at court,' was obliged to get out of the way with his 'lateral-gait.' In England, and under the observation of everybody, the pacer showed great tenacity to his long-inherited habit of action and, although buried in non-pacing blood, 'as supposed', of two or three generations, the pace was liable to crop out again at any time.
In the latter half of the last century there were a good many excellent trotters in England, but the further they got away from the blood of the English pacer the fewer trotters they found. It seems to be true of all countries today that where there are no pacers there are also no trotters.
It was during the era from 1775 to 1850 that a lot of the stronger pacing blood trickled into Canada (which has always been strong in pacers) as pacers that could not be converted to trot were not worth the price of a good mule at the time in the United States. But the pacers and amblers were popular in Canada as saddle horses and buggy horses. This was probably how the bulk of the pacers went to Canada; and, when crossed with the native mares, produced the 'Canadian Pacer'. From these came different families that predominated, such as 'The Pilots', 'The Columbus', 'The Copperbottoms', 'The St Lawrences', 'The Royal Georges', 'The Clear Gritts', etc.
Later, when the pacer became popular, quite a number of these Canadian pacers were taken to Kentucky and other States, and while they sired a lot of very useful racehorses, most of them failed to breed on through their sons, and petered out in a generation or so. But their daughters were bred to Hambletonian 10, and played a big part in helping to establish the Hambletonian family.
Today the two gaits, trotting and pacing are breeding-wise inseperable. They apparently always were different sides of the same thing.
Credit: 'Oldtimer' writing in NZ Trotting Calendar 29Mar72
OPPOSITION TO FRIDAY NIGHT TROTTING
The Canterbury Park Trotting Club struck another rich vein with its switch from Saturday night to Friday night racing at Addington last week.
On-course investments were $245,707, an increase of $72,904 over the corresponding meeting last year, and off-course investments reached $371,097, an increase of $126,588.50. Although the attendance of 10,000 was well below the New Year crowds of close to 13,000 per night, the punters were all there, and the totalisator staff never had a 'breather'. The fields generally were of excellent calibre, with an all-star line up in the Flying Mile, which was won from start to finish by Globe Bay, who had won the Wellington Cup at his last start.
However, all is not yet plain sailing for Friday night racing - in Christchurch, anyway. Christchurch retailers came out against Friday night racing, only hours before the Canterbury Park venture. A statement from Mr E J McGregor, vice-president of the Canterbury and Westland Retailers Association, said that it would be a great pity if the club used Friday nights in the future, and outlined retailers views on the matter. "Traditionally, the retailer has provided complete late-night shopping facilities on Friday nights, and it would be a great pity if Canterbury Park should continue at the expense of the services to the consumer provided by the retailer," he said.
Mr McGregor claimed that it was not really correct to say that many shops open now on Thursday nights, thus leaving the way open for Friday night trotting. "In fact, no shops at all are open in the city any night other than Friday night. By holding race meetings on the same night the trotting clubs cannot possibly believe that the total racing public would be available to attend as they would on any other night," he continued. On the other hand, the retailer would certainly lose by this split in services and interests.
Mr McGregor concluded by pointing out that the fact that Friday night trotting was successful in Sydney had no sound basis for comparison with Christchurch, as Sydney had no late shopping facilities available to the public on Friday nights. He said it was evident that the city was much quieter last Friday night than usual.
He hoped that the trotting club and his association would meet at some stage to discuss the matter.
Credit: NZ Trotting Calendar 26Jan72
The end of what was once a beautiful romance with trotting for the long-renowned Bryce family finally came (it would seem) when last Tuesday, the day of the 1972 running of the NZ Trotting Cup - a race whose history the Bryces played an outstanding part in - James Bryce, jun. died in Christchurch aged 70.
The father and sons triumvirate of James (Scotty) Bryce and Andy and Jim Jnr really hogged NZ's trotting limelight almost right from the time Scotty, in his mid-30s in 1913, shipped out to NZ with his family and continued his remarkable career as a trotting trainer. It is said that Scotty was so good with horses that the Scottish bookmakers were delighted to see him leave his homeland. And it took no time at all for Scotty in NZ to show why.
This was despite atrocious luck at the start of the Bryce family's venture; and the story can be taken up when the little man from Glasgow stood on the Wellington wharf on a dull, cheerless morning in 1913 with his wife, his belongings and five children clustered around him, and had to take on the chin a blow that would have flattened anyone but the strongest. In surroundings where he knew no-one, wondering what the future would hold. Scotty was approached by a stranger. "Are you Mr Bryce?" And hearing the raw Gaelic accent: "Yes? Well,I have had some bad news for you. Your two horses have been ship-wrecked and are still in England." The day must then have seemed really dismal to the little man from Glasgow. Hardly a promising start in a new land. But Scotty was a real horseman - one of the world's best - and he was about to prove it in no uncertain terms.
Stakes were small and bookmakers big in the halcyon days when Scotty Bryce learned to drive imported American horses in trotting races in Glasgow; but he was a canny Scot who soon earned a reputation for reliability in getting horses first past the post. Reading some NZ newspapers from London Bryce saw the pictures of the race crowds, which decided him to come and try his luck here. When he left Scotland, he was given a great send off. Owners and trainers presented him with a purse of 100 guineas in gold. Here is Scotty's own quote on that farewell, recorded in the Auckland Star in the mid 1940s by C G Shaw: "I have never tasted liquor in my life. I thought port wine was a tea-total drink. I never remember leaving the place."
Fares and freight for the family and the horses left Bryce with £300 when he landed in Wellington, and it was at this stage that he learned that his two mares he was shipping out, Our Aggie and Jennie Lind, had gone aground in the Mersey on an old troop transport, the Westmeath, and were still in England. Subsequently, they were transhipped to the Nairnshire and after a rough passage arrived in NZ strapped to the deck after the mate had suggested putting them overboard. The mares reached here two months after the Bryce family, who had decided to go to Christchurch. The family was taken to a boarding house in the city but left after Mrs Bryce had discovered the woman of the house drank 'phonic', which is the Gaelic for methylated spirits. They went to Lancaster Park and there they settled.
Three months after reaching NZ, Our Aggie, driven by Scotty Bryce, won her first race - but she did not get it. She had not been sighted by the judge as she finished on the outside, and his verdict went to a mare called Cute whose driver said after the race: "I did not win but I could not tell the judge that." Our Aggie was placed second and the crowd staged a riot. Our Aggie won seven races in NZ and became the dam of Red Shadow, considered by Scotty to be his best performed horse ever. Red Shadow won the Great Northern Derby in 1930 and the NZ Cup and Metropolitan Free-For-All in 1933, taking all four principal races at Addington. He sired Golden Shadow winner of the 1943 Great Northern Derby, and Shadow Maid, who won the Auckland Cup in the same year.
When they first arrived with their dad and the rest of the family, James Jnr was 13 and Andrew 11. James Jnr, to begin with, got a brief grounding with the thoroughbreds, being introduced to a famed galloping trainer George Cutts at Riccarton. Before he could go far in his role as a racing apprentice, however, increasing weight forced young Jim out of the thoroughbred sport without him riding a winner. But he had been quick to learn and had what it took, Jim, who got his trotting driver's ticket when he was 15, quickly showed when he won at each of his first three rides in saddle events for the standardbreds.
Scotty had two horses engaged in a race, but the owner of one of them, the favourite, would not allow the trainer to put James Jnr up on that horse (as Jimmy had been promised) and a bitterly disappointed lad took his seat on a little mare called Soda. This happened again on another horse, whose owner, with a magnificent gesture, presented the boy with a cigarette holder and 2s 6d. However, to this Scotty added a £5 note. Finally, the first owner who had been so reluctant to avail himself of James Jnr's services asked him to take the ride, and history records that the young boy this time prevailed on the horse he had twice earlier beaten - for three wins out of three in saddle races.
It speaks volumes for Scotty Bryce's reputation that the biggest dividend paid by a horse driven by him was £14. Way back in 1923 horses driven by the old master earned over £100,000 in stakes. Scotty retired from driving when compulsorily retired aged 69 and died 20 years later. He had topped the trainers' list eight times from 1915/16 to 1923/24, being headed out in that period only by Free Holmes in 1922/23. As a driver, Scotty took the premiership five times, while Jim Jnr. was to top it in 1935/36.
In 1925 Jim and Andy were entrusted by their dad to take Great Hope and Taraire to Perth for the first edition of the Australasian Championship, the forerunner of the Inter-Dominion Championships. Both horses fared well, but on the eve of the Grand Final, the father of West Australian trotting, J P Stratton, came to the brothers and candidly informed them that Great Hope, the weaker stayer of the pair, would have to win the final if the boys were to take the championship on points. Andy, driving Taraire, got behind Jim driving Great Hope in the race, amazing horsemanship being displayed by both brothers, literally pushed Great Hope to the line to take the honours. Scotty, knowing what the lads were like, tied up the money from those successes, and Andy and Jim, needing cash, decided to trade Taraire for an Australian horse and some cash when the carnival was over.
To his mortification, Scotty Bryce not only failed to win a race with Planet, the horse got in trade for Taraire by his sons, but when he himself returned to Perth the following year with Sir John McKenxie's Great Bingen, he was beaten in the final by none other than his former stable member, Taraire. Episodes like this and the one in which Great Bingen, swimming in the Perth river, got away, swam to the bank, made his way though the city and back to his stable unscathed were part and parcel of the Bryce saga.
At his model Oakhampton set-up in Hornby near Christchurch, with it's lavish appointments that included a swimming pool for his horses, Scotty and his sons lorded over the trotting world for many happy years. Between them they were associated with six NZ Cup winners and 10 Auckland Cup winners - either in training or as drivers while they won every other big race there was to win in NZ.
Scotty trained the NZ Cup winners Cathedral Chimes(1916), Great Hope(1923), Ahuriri(1925 and 1926), Kohara(1927) and Red Shadow(1933). Of these he drove Cathedral Chimes and Ahuriri (twice) and Red Shadow, while Jimmy Jnr. drove Great Hope and Andy handled Kohara. Scotty prepared the Auckland Cup winner Cathedral Chimes(1915), Man o' War(1920 & 1921), Ahuriri(1927), and Shadow Maid(1943). Of these he drove Cathedral Chimes, Man o' War the first time and Ahuriri while Andy drove Man o' War the second time and Jimmy Junr. Shadow Maid. Then Andy for owner Ted Parkes and trainer Lauder McMahon won the Auckland Cup in 1928 & 1929 with Gold Jacket, while Jimmy Jnr. drove Sea Born to win for Charlie Johnston in 1945 and Captain Sandy for Jock Bain to score in 1948 and 1949.
Their individual victories are far too many to enumerate, but while Andy was associated with such stars as Man o' War, Kohara, Gold Jacket and, in later years, Jewel Derby and Tobacco Road, James Jnr. took the limelight with Shadow Maid, Sea Born and that mighty pacer Captain Sandy.
Eighteen months ago, Andy, at 66, was admitted to hospital with hernia trouble, told his daughter "I'm in the starter's hands," and died peacefully. James Jnr. left to join up with the other two sides of the redoubtable triangle early this week. Among the grandsons of Scotty, Colin(son of Jim) and Jim(son of Andy) were involved for a time in trotting but both gave the practical side, at least, away. It would seem the Bryce saga is over. But, who knows? Perhaps there will be a great-grandson to kindle the flame again. I wouldn't be surprised.
Credit: Ron Bisman writing in NZ Trotting 18Nov72
The first trainer in either code to train 1000 winners (in 1972) Cecil Donald has a special hniche in harness racing history. But a simple stat hadly does him justice. In an erawhen the Purdon have rewritten most training records, the innovation and scope of the vintage Donald years stand out as exceptional.
Donald was the "young man in a hurry" of the trotting world from the time he started out training at Addington in 1922. Having five horses was considered a large professional stable then, and only people like James Bryce had 20. Donald soon had 30 in work. Within seven years he had won his first training and driving premierships, his 45 training wins being 11 more than the previous best. He also held the driving record.
After a hat-trick at Forbury he was described in the media as a "healthy vigourous young man whose secret is his personal supervision every day of a huge team of 30 horses." When Cecil won his final Premiership in 1961 he had equalled James Bryce's enduring record of seven. He had won an Auckland Cup (Carmel) and quinellaed the Dominion Handicap (Kempton, Writer) within 12 months of his first. He also posted the lowest winning total of any premiership with 17 wins in 1941-42 when there were only 559 races and huge travel restrictions. Through that era his operation and enterprise constantly attracted headlines.
Some of the major ones:
* In 1931 he became the first to drive and win a race at Addington (the first) the morning after driving in the seventh race at Alexandra Park. Donald had arranged for Captain McGregor to fly his primitive aircraft from Christchurch to Feilding, left the Northern Express near there for his first plane ride and was able to inspect his stable before the first race.
* Early trainers stood stallions to make ends meet but Donald went a lot further with Jack Potts which arrived from America as a 3-year-old in 1922 imported by Alec Anderson. Jack Potts, a lovely pacer, and the only American pacing-bred sire available then, became the breeding phenomenon of his era winning nine successive sires premierships.
* In 1938-39 Jack Potts was the first to leave 100 winners in a season. Donald also stood sons of Jack Potts such as Gamble (2nd in a NZ Cup) which at times caused some problems with officialdom. In 1937he had over 150 horses at Belfast, unheard of in that era. He also raced and trained gallopers and stood thoroughbreds at stud.
* Calumet Axworth, a disappointment, and Lusty Volo, a £1500 purchase, were stallions Donald imported from America. Lusty Volo died from heart failure whe his oldest crop were only two. He left top liners Great Venture and Sir Michael as well as the dam of Our Roger.
* At the 1937 New Zealand Cup meeting Donald was the leading trainer, the leading driver and his stallion Jack Potts the leading sire - another unique record. At the 1940 New Zealand Cup meeting, Donald trained the winner of the NZ Cup (Marlene), the Dominion Handicap (Tan John, a $16 buy and then aged 14) and the NZ FFA (Plutus) - a feat not repeated in the 72 years since.
* Cecil quoted his feat of training the home-bred but chronically unsound Marlene, then seven, to win the Cup as his finest achievment. As usual his skilful brother, Ron, drove, Cecil believing lightweight was an advantage in the cart. He had also been severely injured in a fall driving Accountant that year. But Cecil drove Cairnbrae (an 8-year-old) with supreme judgement (led last mile) to win his second Cup for owner Ted Lowe in 1964 at a time when the various brackets including King Hal, Gildirect, Urrall, Falsehood and Dandy Briar were popular combinations with the public. Donald had minor placings in other Cups with Lindbergh, Jack Potts, Bayard, Lary Shona and Falsehood.
* More than once he produced three horse brackets in the race. Dandy Briar won an Auckland Cup. In later years Chief Command, Indecision and Rauka Lad were his top pacers.
* In 1941 Donald based his entire racing team at Oamaru in the weeks leading up to the August Addington meeting because of the drier tracks. "The Belfast track was always a problem in winter but those were the sort of ideas he would come up with," Donald's former chief assistant Bob Nyhan recalls.
* A Donald innovation relieved a disastrous fire at Belfast which killed his high class pacer Accountant, a brother to Marlene. He had a special irrigation system for his track. "It was something new," Nyhan said. "Nobody bothered to water their training tracks like that. He also groomed the track during training sessions." When a rear barn burst into flames during the night in June, 1944, only the resources of the track watering system saved the main barn. Five horses died in the fire, most by suffocation.
* In 1950 Donald who had held some large sales of his own of young stock here in the 1930's, landed in Sydney with 25 horses to sell or, if not sold, to race. Among them was the stallion Gamble which fetched 1300 quineas. Most of the rest found a new home.
* The Donald training regime accentuated the basics. He had extraordinary patience in "setting a horse up" - claimed as 12 months or more by some. "He was a great feeder," Nyhan remembers. Glocose was a staple part of the horse's diet and his biggest successes were with stayers.
* Don Nyhan used to recall how Donald would put colts together on trucks without stalls as part of their education.
* Beside all that Ces Donald was a leading cattle dealer and eventually bought farms to cater for his stock. To manage one of the biggest racing teams in the country, a stud, and maintain his dealing interests makes him one of the rare achievers in the Kiwi harness world.
Credit: David McCarthy writing in HRWeekly 2May12
BRISBANE - WELCOME ADVICE
Welcome Advice, the horse who could have won three Inter Dominions had the luck gone his way, took out the big prize in Brisbane in 1972 - and was lucky to do so. Had it not been for good driving combined with luck, Welcome Advice, one of the best horses to ever look through a bridle, might never have been an Inter- Dominion Champion. Manaroa ran fifth after starting from 18 yards behind.
A sensational colt pacer of his time, and one who made an even greater impact as a sire, the Light Brigade horse Fallacy died last week. Fallacy was raced by J D Litten who trained him throughout his career and apart from an odd stint at the stud away from Canterbury he spent almost the whole of his lifetime at Litten's Preston Farm at West Melton. He was foaled in 1948.
Fallacy hit the headlines in his first season of racing - as a 3-year-old, at which age he won seven of his 10 starts and also finished second twice. He was the top juvenile of his year winning the 1952 NZ Derby in a race record of 3:12 1-5, which stood for eight years until Stormont cut it back to 3:11 4-5. He also won the NZ Champion Stakes and the NZ Futurity Stakes that season. Fallacy was only lightly raced for the remainder of his career, being twice placed in four starts at four, he was unplaced in his three 5-year-old appearances and placed once in five starts at six.
As a sire, however, he matched his juvenile brilliance. He finished fourth on the NZ sires' list in the 1962/3 season and was leading NZ-bred sire for the year. And it was from this point on that he really made an impact on the NZ sires' list, being in the top five on no fewer than eight occasions. He was faced with strong opposition in holding his place in the leading bracket as Light Brigade, U Scott, Hal Tryax, Garrison Hanover and Johnny Globe were at their peak in a mighty siring age.
In the 17 seasons that Fallacy's stock raced in NZ he sired more than 160 winners of 528 races and $709,814 in stakes to the end of last season. Taking the winnings of his stock in Australia and America into account Fallacy's stock must have won around the $1 million mark. With several crops to represent him in future he could well join the only other NZ bred sire, Johnny Globe, to have sired winners of $1 million in stakes in his own country.
Fallacy sired a triple NZ Cup winner in False Step and also last year's NZ Cup winner, True Averil. Both hold 2:00 records - True Averil the winner of $52,830 in stakes with figures of 1:58 4-5 and False Step, who also won a heat of the 1961 International series at Yonkers in 2:00. Fallacy sired many grand stayers over the years, among them Falsehood(2:06 2-5), who won 18 races, Allakasam(2:00 2-5), one of the finest staying mares bred in this country and the winner of 18 races; a brilliant 3-year-old in Dignus who won the NZ Derby, Junior Royal, who won 12; a NZ Derby winner in Doctor Barry, who won 10, a NZ Cup place-getter in Happy Ending(4:11 2-5), a NZ Cup-class pacer in Rain Again(2:05 3-5), who has won 12 races. In both NZ and Australia the list of winners sired by Fallacy is a select and lengthy one.
In the past few seasons Fallacy has distinguished himself as a broodmare sire, and until his death he was NZ's leading living sire of broodmares. In the seven or eight seasons he has figured as a broodmare sire Fallacy mares have left the winners of more than $200,000 in stakes in NZ. They will continue to exert an influence far beyond this figure. One of NZ's star pacers at the moment in Royal Ascot: Geffin winner of the 1961 trotter's Inter-Dominion Grand Final: Tutira, who won the Dominion Handicap and NZ Trotters Free-For-All: Royal Trump(2:01 3-5): a star juvenile trotter in the ill-fated Black Miller are among those from mares by Fallacy.
Not only did Fallacy sire 2:00 performers in False Step and True Averil, but two of his sons in False Step and Dignus became 2:00 sires. False Step sired Miss Step(1:59 3-5), who left NZ as a novice and took her record in America and Dignus, a leading juvenile himself and winner of the New South Wales Derby, is the sire of Peerswick(2:00). Some of Fallacy's best performed sons were kept entire and as his male line has already taken 2:00 status (through his own siring efforts and those of his sons False Step and Dignus) it is certain to exert itself further. Other sons, particularly True Averil, Junior Royal and Happy Ending could further add to the male line of Light Brigade, through Fallacy.
Fallacy has an interesting breeding background. His sire Light Brigade was not only one of NZ's top sires over a long period, but his sons, grandsons and great grandsons have come to the top as sires. His fillies have put him at the head of the NZ broomare sires for the last three seasons. Fallacy's dam, Diversion also belongs to what is probably the most distinguished sire family outside America. Diversion was by Rey de Oro(imp) from Escapade, by Nelson Bingen fron NZ Cup winner Country Belle, whose grandam was an Arab mare. It is to this Arab mare that Logan Derby (sire of NZ's champion sire of the last three seasons in Johnny Globe) and one of NZ's greatest broodmares in Rustic Maid, trace. Rustic Maid has established a family of sires all of her own. Chamfer and Scottish Brigade, both leading sires in Australia, Gentry, who was top sire of NZ's 2-year-olds last season.
Fallacy will break an association of some 25 years with the Preston Farm household of the Litten family. Jack Litten always did the Light Brigade horse proud and only last month when I saw Fallacy at West Melton he certainly did not look his 25 years and was being given the same immaculate care that had been given him throughout his life.
Credit: 'Stopwatch' writing in NZ Trotting 9Sep72
1972 NZ DERBY STAKES
If you had to pick an outstanding performance during the two days and two nights of the NZ Metropolitan Trotting Club's Cup meeting, it would have to be that of the NZ Derby Stakes winner Willie Win. Seldom has a three-year-old turned in a more impressive winning performance and shown as much sheer speed as Willie Win did, nor had to overcome such obstacles to do so.
The start of the Derby was a poor one and it was not until the final two furlongs that the event bore any resemblance to a $17,020 classic. But then, when first Lord Gregory, then Kotare Scott took cracks at the pacemaking favourite Young Quinn, the excitement started to mount. It reached a high point when Willie Win cut loose from the back with a brilliant sprint that carried him past Kotare Scott at the half-furlong and from then on the result was never in doubt. Considering that Young Quinn had forced a record-breaking pace throughout, the fact that Willie Win could muster such a finishing sprint speaks volumes for his ability.
Willie Win's victory cannot be mentioned without credit being paid to Maurice Holmes, the man who drove Mr Bob Negus's three-year-old to victory. The win was an unparalleled 12th in the classic, his previous winners being Wrackler (1928), Arethusa (1930), Ciro (1931), Aldershot (1938), Imperial Jade (1939), Scottish Lady (1942), Free Fight (1946), Congo Song (1947), Royal Minstrel (1954), Tobacco Road (1957) and Student Prince (1960).
Willie Win's success was a triumph for the New Zealand bred stallion Good Chase. Good Chase had two representatives in the Derby from his first crop, sired before he embarked on a successful racing career in America, and the other representative ran a very creditable race for third.
In winning, Willie Win clipped one fifth of a second off Flying Note's three-year-old record of 3:25.2 for 13 furlongs set in 1961.
The runner-up in the Derby, Kotare Scott did very well for a horse who started only once as a two-year-old then went into the Derby with two wins and a third from four starts to his credit this season. Kotare Scott's owners Mr and Mrs A R Abell, went very close to completing a notable double for the night for in the previous race, Kotare Legend had shown a lot of ability in winning the NZ Spring Time Stakes for two-year-olds.
Credit: 'Lookout' writing in NZ Trotting
The New Zealand Metropolitan Trotting Club received little value for its $40,600 stake when Tuesday's New Zealand Trotting Cup turned into a disappointing affair.
The race was robbed of a tremendous amount of interest when Arapaho, Bella's Command, Royal Ascot and Wag broke at the start, then when the favourite Rauka Lad was sent into a gallop at the 12 furlongs and went right back to the rear.
There were some disgruntled drivers after the event, which went to the outsider Globe Bay. Bob Nyhan, the driver of Rauka Lad, rated the favourite a certainty beaten after the event though he said it was no good complaining afterwards. "I thought something like this might happen with no recognised pacemaker in the field," Nyhan said. "Everybody wanted to be handy but nobody wanted to lead. He was pulling very hard at the rear and I had no option to go at the five and a half," Nyhan said. Rauka Lad swept quickly round the field to hit the front on the home turn but Globe Bay was right with him and, not surprisingly, Rauka Lad was weakening inside the furlong and faded to fifth at the finish.
Globe Bay was favoured with a good run four places on the outer and moved forward with Rauka Lad on the home turn. He was clear at the furlong and under a hard drive, held off the game challenge from the free-legged Robalan who came at him first, then Scottish Charm, who burst through inside the final 100 yards to take second only three quarters of a length from the winner.
There was a New Zealand Cup background to Globe Bay. He is the third son of the 1954 Cup winner, Johnny Globe, to win the Cup. But Globe Bay has also a New Zealand Cup background on his dam's side. He is out of the Light Brigade mare Baylight, bred at the Roydon Lodge Stud and purchased in 1965 by Mr S J Wheatley, who bred and races Globe Bay, for 465 guineas. Globe Bay has now won 15 races and been 21 times placed for $57,825 in stakes. Globe Bay was first trained by D G Nyhan, but it has been for J A Carmichael, who drove him at Addington, that he has developed his best form. Baylight, the dam of Globe Bay, is out of Pleasure Bay, a half sister to Colwyn Bay, dam of the million dollar pacer Cardigan Bay (1:56.2) winner of the 1963 New Zealand Cup
Scottish Charm led out but was then steadied to trail Robalan with 12 and a half furlongs to run and then moved up on the outer in the open from the mile when Hundred Pipers went to the front at the 10 furlongs. She was handy into the straight and finished very well when clear. Robalan enjoyed a perfect trail when Hundred Pipers took the lead off him at the 10 furlongs and turning for home looked a big danger to Globe Bay. He was under pressure to do better however and was weakening a shade at the finish. Royal Belmer was a length and a half back fourth after racing in the third line on the rails from the 10 furlongs. She fought on gamely in the straight and was not disgraced. Rauka Lad was half a length back fifth, a mighty effort considering his run.
Berkleigh, who lost ground in the incident at the 12 furlongs, battled on for sixth ahead of Hoover who had a good run three back on the outside but could not come on. Royal Ascot, who was slow away and became badly placed on the rail after and battled on. Wag, who broke early, was beaten off nine lengths back ninth ahead of Arapaho, who went away in a hopeless gallop and was a long way from the leaders when they settled. He tried to follow Rauka Lad when he moved but could not muster the pace and was a well beaten horse two furlongs from home. Manaroa, who also attempted to go with Rauka Lad, was next ahead of Bella's Command and the very tired pacemaker Hunder Pipers. Jacquinot Bay was last.
The time for the race, 4:11.6, is the seventh fastest in the history of the race which accounts for he failure of those who were back in the running to make any ground over the last half mile when th pace really went on.
Following the running of the race, an enquiry was held into the incident at the 12 furlongs and as a result, I M Behrns, the driver of Hundred Pipers, was suspended for causing interference to Berkleigh who in turn checked Rauka Lad.
Credit: NZ Totting
1972 DOMINION TROTTING HANDICAP
Aucklander Easton Light proved the star trotter at the NZ Cup carnival, his Dominion Handicap success confirming his staying worth and it justified the confidence and judgement of his owners Messrs E W & T R Running who had had opportunities to sell him overseas before this. However, now on a tight mark his opportunities will be restricted.
Easton Light is by Great Evander (a son of Bill B from the U Scott mare Ayrshire Scott, a member of the Muricata family), who has a wonderful siring record, particularly in the field of trotters with others including Paula (2:03.4), Paulette, Light Evander and Salvander to his credit. Great Evander, a top pacer at two and three years, sired one of the best pacers of his time in Vanderford (2:00.4), Wee Don (1:59.8) and so on.
Easton Light is out of the Light Brigade mare Beverley Light, dam also of Miss Debra (2:05.6), who has won seven races including a Franklin Cup. Beverley Light was a half sister to Hew Shell, the dam of Hal Scott (1:59.4) and Hal Brunt (2:01.2). Hew Shell and Beverley Light were out of the Sandydale mare Starshell who was exported to Australia in 1960.
Credit: 'Stopwatch' writing in NZ Trotting