The death occurred last week of Mr C King, one of the Dominion's leading reinsmen several years ago.
King was attached to C S Donald's establishment, first at Addington and later at Belfast. King was with Donald for a good number of years and rode and drove many winners from the stable. He won the Ashburton Cup and Easter Handicap with Lindbergh, and also won the Ashburton Cup in 1945 with Happy Man, a horse he was also successful with in the NZ Free-For-All. King also drove Sprayman to win the NZ Sapling Stakes, and Twenty Grand to win the Westport Cup.
After several years with Donald, King transferred to Santa Rosa Farm at Halswell, where he was also successful as a reinsman.
Credit: NZ Trotting Calendar 26May65
The death occurred in Christchurch on Friday of Mr Albert Hendriksen, who about 40 years ago was one of the leading drivers in NZ.
Mr Hendriksen came into prominence when he brought Albert H (which was named after him) from Blenheim for Mr M Mahar just before the 1912 NZ Cup, which he won. Mr Hendriksen then settled in Canterbury, and he drove many winners, including a number for the late Mr W J Morland.
His winners included Country Belle (NZ Cup), Cardinal Logan, winner of many races and second to Kohara in the Cup, Prince Akwood and Peter Mac (NZ Derby Stakes), Erin's King (National Cup), Sungod (Timaru Cup), Hal Junior (Canterbury Handicap), President Wilson and Nantwitch (Great Northern Derby Stakes), and Hustler (Gore Cup).
Mr Hendriksen was for a time studmaster at Santa Rosa Stud, Halswell, when Truman Direct and Real Guy were there.
Credit: NZ Trotting Calendar 9Jun54
As the first two decades of Cup competition closed there was a changing of the guards of sorts when Great Hope led home the unlucky Acron, the first 4-year-old to contest the race, in the hands of James Bryce Jnr, who at 21 remains the youngest reinsman to win the Cup, along with Allan Holmes.
In a fine field, they were followed in by Onyx, Willie Lincoln, Albert Cling, Trix Pointer and the winner's stablemate Taraire, the backmarker on 48 yards.
Initially raced by his breeder Robert McMillan and then Joe Corrigan, Great Hope had only been owned for three months by Dunedin sportsman J Trengrove.
He went on to be placed in the next two Cups and was also runner-up to stablemate Taraire in the forerunner to the Inter-Dominion Championship in Perth.
Credit: NZ HRWeekly 1Oct2003
Great Hope, always well-placed and well-driven by James Bryce junior, held out the four-year-old Acron after a great contest. Bryce, only 21 years nine months, was by far the youngest driver to win a New Zealand Cup, a record he held until 1932, when Allan Holmes, 21 years one month, piloted Harold Logan to victory.
Bracketmates Great Hope and Taraire were the race favourites. The latter, the top money-winner from the previous season, scored a dashing win in the King George Handicap at Addington in August, posting 4:29.6, and qualified within the limit of 4:30. But Taraire was badly treated by the handicapper and shared the back mark of 48 yards with Vilo. As it turned out, Taraire began badly and never showed up during the running.
Great Hope raced three times in August. Earlier in the three-day National meeting he raced prominently in the August and King George Handicaps, but failed to see out the distance, fading in the last 100 yards. In the National Cup on the final day he improved to run third behind Alto Chimes and Onyx.
From the start Bryce positioned Great Hope, from his 12-yard handicap, in behind the leader Paul Default, and they were followed most of the way by Trix Pointer, Vilo, Albert Cling and Willie Lincoln. Snowshoe fell when mixing her gait in the back straight the first time and dislodged Bill Tomkinson. In the back straight the last time Paul Default and Great Hope were driven clear, while Onyx made a forward move and Acron moved up fast on the rails. At the tanks Bryce sent Great Hope away in the lead, and he turned for home on his own, finally winning in 4:31.4 by a length from the fast-finishing and unlucky Acron. Then followed Onyx, Willie Lincoln, Albert Cling, Trix Pointer and Taraire.
Great Hope, a five-year-old, was by the American sire Great Audubon, from Sadie Dillon. He was raced early in his career by his breeder, Robert McMillan, of the Santa Rosa Stud, where Great Audubon stood at a fee of £15 15s. At three, Great Hope was the best of his age, winning the Great Northern Derby at Auckland and the New Zealand Derby at New Brighton. Between these winning runs, McMillan died and the horse passed to Joe Corrigan, a patron of the Bryce stable. After the August meeting, where Great Hope proved disappointing, he was sold again, this time to the Dunedin sportsman, J Trengrove. When presented with the Cup by the Governor-General, Lord Jellicoe, Trengrove expressed his jubilation and good fortune at having owned a horse for only three months and in that time having him win the country's most prestigious race.
Acron was the first four-year-old to contest the New Zealand Cup, but, like so many other extremely good four-year-olds who followed him into the race, the win eluded him. Acron possessed brilliant speed and stamina and for 10 years held the record mile time in New Zealand of 2:03.6. The outstanding youngster of his time, winning the Great Northern and New Zealand Derbies, Acron was the last qualifier for the 1923 New Zealand Cup, winning the Islington Handicap, the last race on the final day of the August meeting, with a superlative performance. He started from 72 yards and beat 17 others to record a time of 4:29.8.
Slow away in the Cup and a long way back early, Acron gradually improved and at the end of the first mile took a place on the inside, at the back of the first group. That proved to be a bad decision because Jack Kennerley could not clear Acron until the race was all but over, though he put in a tremendous run for second. Such bad luck was to dog owner J R McKenzie and his son Roy, who, despite every effort, have failed to land a New Zealand Cup. Yet, between them the McKenzie's have won every other important race on the harness racing calendar and have been leading owners 18 times. J R McKenzie headed the owners' list for the first time in the 1925-26 season.
Acron and Onyx (who ran her usual honest race for third) were by Free Holmes' imported stallion Logan Pointer, then standing alongside his other American import, Rey de Oro, at his Upper Riccarton Stud. Both were successful sires, but Logan Pointer more so. Logan Pointer, foaled in 1909 and imported in 1915, did not race in New Zealand and was first represented on the sires' list in 1918-19. For six seasons, from 1922-23 until 1927-28, and again in 1930-31, he was the country's top sire. Unfortunately, Logan Pointer met a premature end, in 1924, in the prime of his stud duty, when he was kicked by a pony and had to be destroyed. In all, he sired 187 individual winners. His greatest son, without doubt, was pacing idol Harold Logan. Other outstanding performers, in addition to Onyx and Acron, were Prince Pointer, Jewel Pointer, Logan Chief, Cardinal Logan, Logan Park, Native Chief and the trotter Trampfast.
On the second day of the 1923 meeting some excellent performances were recorded by several young horses, none more so than the victory by Logan Chief in the New Zealand Free-For-All, beating Great Hope and Happy Voyage. Logan Chief was one of the stars of the early part of the season, recording three wins and two minor placings from five starts.
Kennerley must have been the envy of most trainers at this time, with Logan Chief, Acron and rising champion Great Bingen in his Belfast stable. But even with this powerful trio, Kennerley trailed James Bryce at the end of the season. Bryce trained 24 winners and drove 28. Kennerley, with 16½ training and the same number of driving successes, was runner-up.
A cold easterly made the third day unpleasant. Don Wild, a free-legged pacer, won the Christchurch Handicap from Tatsy Dillon and Trix Pointer. Don Wild continued his good form after this meeting and by the end of the season was the top money-winner with £3202. Free-legged pacers have been a rarity on racetracks in New Zealand and few have made top company. There have been exceptions - Young Irvington, Don Wild, Lawn Derby, Robalan and Final Decision all raced 'without straps' and made it to the top level.
Native King, a son of Nelson Bingen and Norice, won the Dominion Handicap in race-record time of 4:37.2. Native King was a brother to Nelson Derby, sire of Haughty.
The betting at Addington over the three days was £210,436, a decrease of £11,000 on the previous year. The trend continued, as interest, it seemed, had peaked at Addington. Patrons at the track in 1923 were greeted with extentions to the steward's stand. However, the purchase by the club of a large property on Riccarton Road and the proposed transfer of operations away from Addington were much-discussed topics at this time. The Riccarton project never went ahead, although substantial plans were drawn up. Significantly, the track was designed to run clockwise, the opposite way to Addington. The Riccarton land was sold some years later, and it seems that harness racing in Christchurch will forever have its headquarters at Addington
Credit: Bernie Wood writing in The Cup
Lady Clare, the second mare to win the New Zealand Cup, was a six-year-old by Prince Imperial from Clare, who was by Lincoln Yet, the sire of Monte Carlo.
Her trainer, James Tasker, who had been successful with Marian in 1907, took the drive behind her more favoured bracketmate Aberfeldy, and entrusted the drive behind Lady Clare to Jack Brankin. The Cup field was not a strong one, with Wildwood Junior out of the way. Also missing from nominations was King Cole, the star of the August meeting. King Cole, winner of the King George Handicap from Bribery and Dick Fly, and the National Cup from Havoc and Bright, had been temporarily retired to stud. The club received 14 nominations, but the early favourite, St Swithin, was injured and withdrawn. Sal Tasker, who had not raced for four years, and Manderene were two other defections. The front starter, Imperial Polly, received five seconds from the back marker, Bright. Al Franz, because of some outstanding trials, was race favourite, with the bracketed pair of Dick Fly and Redchild, from the stable of Manny Edwards, also well supported. Redchild was the only trotter entered.
The field did not get away at the first attempt because Free Holmes, the driver of Bribery, jumped the start. Medallion stood on the mark and took no place in the race, while Bribery went only one lap and then pulled up lame. Lady Clare led from the start and at the halfway stage was still in front, followed by Al Franz, Dick Fly, Imperial Polly, Aberfeldy, Havoc and Redchild. The mare held on to the lead to win by a length, in 4:38, from Dick Fly, with necks to Al Franz and Redchild. Then came Aberfeldy, Bright and Havoc.
The Cup victory was the last of Lady Clare's seven career wins, but she showed her durability by racing over eight seasons. Indirectly, she featured again in the Cup in 1988, when Luxury Liner turned the clock back 77 years. Lady Clare was the firth dam of Luxury Liner. Lady Clare's £700 from the Cup stake of 1000 sovereigns was the only money she won during the season. Emmeline, an outstanding mare by Rothschild from Imperialism, a Prince Imperial mare, won £949 and was the season's top earner. Rothschild and Prince Imperial were both still standing at stud in the Canterbury area. Rothschild was at Durbar Lodge, in Ashburton, available at a fee of 10 guineas. Prince Imperial and his son, Advance, stood at James McDonnell's Seafield Road farm, also in Ashburton. Prince Imperial's fee was also set at 10 guineas, but Advance was available at half that rate. Franz, the sire of Al Franz (third in the Cup), stood at Claude Piper's stud at Upper Riccarton, at 10 guineas. Franz was a full-brother to Fritz, by Vancleve from Fraulein.
A new surname at that time, but a very familiar on now, Dan Nyhan, introduced another great harness racing family to Addington. Nyhan trained at Hutt Park and ha won the 1909 Auckland Cup with Havoc. He was the father of Don Nyhan, later to train the winners of three New Zealand Cups with his legendary pair of Johnny Globe and Lordship, and grandfather of Denis Nyhan, who drove Lordship (twice) and trained and drove Robalan to win the Cup.
Of all the stallions in Canterbury, Wildwood Junior commanded the biggest fee, 12 guineas, but he held that honour only until 1914, when Robert McMillan, an expatriate American horseman, stood his American imports Nelson Bingen and Brent Locanda at fees of 15 guineas at his Santa Rosa stud at Halswell. He also had Harold Dillon and Petereta on his property. Harold Dillon, sire of the champion Author Dillon, was the top sire for six seasons, from 1916-17 until 1921-22, while Petereta gained some fame by siring the double New Zealand Cup winner Reta Reter.
The outstanding feature of the 1911 Cup meeting was the introduction of races restricted to trotters, particularly the Dominion Handicap. The move, prompted by the Metropolitan Club, came at an appropriate time to save horses of this gait from extinction in New Zealand racing. In the 1880s and 1890s there were two trotters for every pacer in New Zealand, but by 1911 the reverse ratio applied. With the advent of the sulky and harness from the United States, trainer in the 1890s found pacers easier to gait and easier to train, and learned that they came to speed in less time, so many trotters were converted to the pacing gait. Generally, the trotter could not match the pacer on the track.
Coiner won the Middleton Handicap on the first day, in saddle, and raced over two miles in 4:52. Quincey, who had been successful against the pacers on several occasions, got up in the last stride to dead-heat with Clive in the Dominion Handicap, with Muricata, a promising five-year-old, third. Muricata became the dam of double New Zealand Cup winner Ahuriri. The Dominion Handicap carried a stake of 235 sovereigns and was raced in harness for 5:05 class performers. Quincey's time was 4:37.4 slightly faster than Lady Clare recorded in the Cup on the Tuesday. Another of the 13 trotters in this race was the Australian-bred Verax, who started in the New Zealand Cup six times.
The meeting ended with some high-class racing on Show Day. In the Enfield Handicap, in saddle, Aberfeldy, from scratch, beat 14 rivals in 2:12.6, a New Zealand race-winning record for one mile. St Swithin, who had to miss the Cup, won the Christchurch Handicap from Emmeline and Little Tib. The Andy Pringle-trained pacer confirmed how unfortunate it was for his connections that injury denied him a Cup start.
Further improvements had been made at Addington, with a large new 10-shilling totalisator housebeing used for the first time. With bookmakers outlawed, the totalisator turned over a record £27,418 on Cup Day, and betting on the Cup of £6096 10s was a single-race record. The total for the three days of the carnival of £68,329 was an increase of £17,440 over the previous year.
Credit: Bernie Wood writing in The Cup
Bred in California in 1903 Harold Dillon was imported as a yearling by Mr E T Le Lievre of Akaroa who played a major part in the development of the standardbred at that time. What Mr Le Lievre's reactions were when he first saw his new purchase cannot be guessed at but Harold Dillon turned out to be a very small horse and he never grew a great deal, being little more than a pony until the day he died.
Tried as a racehorse Harold Dillon was not a success but his breeding future received a boost when a member of his first small crop (he was used at the stud before he was 2 years old) won the Futurity Stakes at the Addington Easter meeting of 1909 which was an important race in it's time. This was Dillon Bell who reached the best classes, and another to do well from an early crop was Moa Bell who also won a number of races.
Harold Dillon had mixed patronage early on but once he was transferred to the Santa Rosa Stud at Halswell near Christchurch under a master horseman in Bob McMillan his stocks received a boost. Like many sires some of his stock acquired doubtful reputations which for a time threatened his own career but in the end his progeny were so successful on the track that he downed the critics and became a great sire.
Harold Dillon was leading sire for five seasons from 1916 until 1921 taking over from Rothschild and conceding leadership to Logan Pointer though he was second and third to that sire for a number of years.He produced 182 individual winners which was an excellent record for the day. His best one was the brilliant Author Dillon the Robalan of his time whose record of 18 wins and 14 placings would have been much better but for the ridiculous handicapping of the day which saw him giving away long starts to good fields. He won three NZ Free-For-Alls and was virtually unbeatable in these types of races. Like all the Harold Dillon breed he was as tough as old boots and raced from three to nine years for his record. He was a top juvenile pacer as well and was a surprising success as a sire, his mares going particularly well, producing among others Marlene (NZ Cup), Indian Clipper and Knave of Diamonds. He himself sired among others Queen Auditor who won 13 races and produced the top mare of the 50s in White Angel.
Cello Sydney Wilkes, himself little more than a pony was another top winner for Harold Dillon and among his 11 wins was the feat of winning four races at the Cup meeting which only one other horse has done, this being Cardigan Bay. Adonis another stallion on the small side was perhaps the best pacer of them all and was also a successful sire featuring prominently in the Misfortune family. Waitaki Girl by Harold Dillon won 14 races and nearly $12,000 in stakes winning the feature race at the Canterbury Park Winter Meeting four years in succession. Some of the Harold Dillons were great mudlarks one being Sungod who reached Cup class and was placed in that event. Sungod was a sire of note himself and sired All Sunshine, an ancestress of Lunar Chance.
John Dillon was another top class pacer and quite the fastest beginner seen up to his time. He started in several Cups but was a better sprinter than a stayer. The late 'Dil' Edwards claimed that John Dillon once did a quarter in 28 seconds in training at Addington which was sensational in those days. Other Cup class performers by Harold Dillon were Antonio Oinaki (also a successful sire) Dolly Dillon and Lord Dillon.
As a broodmare sire Harold Dillon was also successful his daughters producing over 200 winners, though he was more successful with his male line than some imported sires. Two from Harold Dillon mares were Pot Luck and Parisienne winner and runner-up in the 1938 Inter-Dominion Championship. Dilworth was a national recordholder and Reporter a top class performer, Grace Dillon was the grandam of Roschana the dam of Cardinal Garrison. Highland Princess was the dam of the winners of 31 races. Eileen Dillon was the dam of Acuity (7 wins) who in turn produced Poranui and the champion Australian pacer Jackie Scott. Prolific was the dam of Manoeuvre who won eight races while Tatsy Dillon who herself won the Dunedin Cup is the founder of a successful family including Tatsydale and the good trotters Merrin and Ali Bey.
Connie Dillon was a great producer for the Benny family of Springston and included in her offspring or descendants are Gold Peg (9 wins) the grandam of the ill-fated Balcairn, Royal Fame (8 wins) Royal Counter (10 wins)and others. Sakatawea the dam of Star Classic belongs to this family. Another successful Harold Dillon mare was Flossie Dillon dam of Sonoma (Methven Cup), Tom Thumb (8 wins) and Pat Dillon ancestress of a champion trotting family including Waitaki Hanover of whom she was grandam. Protector, the sire of Nigel Craig has Harold Dillon blood through his 3rd dam Muriel Dillon.
At Santa Rosa where Harold Dillon stood for most of his career until his death in 1929 there are no horses now, just rows and rows of houses. The stud may have gone and Harold Dillon may have gone but his influence on our bloodstock cannot be erased nearly as easily.
David McCarthy writing in NZ Trotguide 18Nov76
We cannot let the stud career of Harold Dillon go without adding to his list a mare which we inadvertently missed at the time. This was Mirie Dillon who founded a line of fine winners for Colin McLaughlin of Mt Hutt. She was the grandam of Allakasam and ancestress of Royal Ascot. Adding further to his list was Sadie Dillon the dam of the 1923 Cup winner Great Hope.
Credit: NZ Trotguide 11Nov76