(Article from Mary Lou Dondarski)
Horsemen over the country not familiar with the activities of the Road Horse Association of New Jersey, the titular name under which citizens of Newark, N. J., and adjacent cities, including New York, have organized to hold their matinees, have but a vague idea of the splendid sport these amateurs enjoy. To go further into details regarding the fine body which makes racing possible in Newark, these facts must be known to appreciate the high place the R. 14. A. of N. J. occupies.
It is now in its twenty-seventh year of activity, during which hundreds of prizes have been won, whose value would be difficult to estimate. The races are held at Weequahic Park, on the edge of Newark, regarded as the most beautiful halfmile track and surroundings in the entire U. S., no exceptions being made. No small measure of the success of this quarter-century-old organization is due to the efforts of the secretary, James M. Beldon. A little further information regarding Weequahic Park is that it is kept in condition by the city government, which feels repaid by the entertainment furnished to the thousands and thousands of citizens that attend the weekly matinees without price and without pay. The racing is splendid as a rule, not only giving entertainment to the people but having another side that it is not wholly credited with. It is the opinion of many weekly observers of the horses and their racing that the sport of the R. H. A. of N. J. is the best school for race horses anywhere in the land, not to mention the recreation it furnishes the gentlemen that come there weekly to drive, or the valuable experience they obtain in the art of competitive driving.
The past season has been one of the best years in the history of the matinee organization, a number of future good race prospects being developed.
By far the most successful stable among the several located for the summer season at Weequahic Park during 1926, has been the Newbrook Stable, of Newark, N. J., owned by Mr. H. Stacy Smith, but to a very large extent driven in races by the Brooklyn amateur "ace," Mr. Win. H. Strang, Jr.
Five horses did most of the racing for the Newark stable and a highly bred lot they are. They include the natty bay filly Anona, by U. Forbes, 2, 2:121/4, prominent in the threeyear-old trots. The six-year-old bay mare Marie Guy is by Guy Axworthy, dam Dainty Marie, by The Captain General; grandam Seaside 2:161/4, by Hector Wilkes. She has always been a fast mare, trotting a quarter in :35 as a yearling,, and a mile in 2:28 as a two-year-old, and her very attractive gait caused her sale to her present owner. The next of note is the good race mare Lady Sybil 2:121/4, by San Francisco, own sister of Sybil Frisco, 4, 2:131/4, by San Francisco, dam Sybil Worthy, 2, 2:15, by Axworthy; grandam Sybil Knight, 2, 2:221/2, by Prodigal 2:16. Lady Sybil was raced by Tommy Berry a number of times in 1925, proving herself a most consistent race trotter.
The fourth of the trotters to be listed furnishes a most interesting theme for the future. It is the rangy black threeyear-old colt Southold, by San Francisco 2:073/4, dam the world's champion two-year-old filly The Real Lady, by Moko. The Real Lady, as all will recall, was unbeaten in the futurities as a two-year-old, her race record of 2:041/4 still holding as the best for a two-year-old of her sex. She reduced her mark at three to 2:03, which was also a world's record until lowered a bare quarter second by Sister Bertha. The Real Lady's dam is Fruity Worthy, 2, 2:251/4, by Axworthy. True to San Francisco's tribe, Southold was not a futurity two-year-old, but he had speed, trotting in 2:28, and a half in 1:123/4. And as he has shown himself to be almost faultless as a race colt the past season, and capable of 2:15 over Weequahic, the question that arises: "Have we any better prospects as a young sire, and particularly to carry on the San Francisco line, than Southold?" A high authority says: "We have not. His true race instinct and wonderful constitution fit him better than any of the younger sons of San Francisco to take his place at Walnut Hall Farm or at any other trotting stud."
But we have still the pride of the stable to mention; the dessert of an already delectable menu of young harness race horses. This last is the handsome chestnut, gelding Stateline, by Axtelline 2:141/4, son of Axtell 2:12, his dam being by the Indiana sire Empire Direct, p, 2:081/4. By his breeding one would instinctively know that Stateline was an Indiana product, where 2:10 pacers are said to come out with the leaves every spring. But it is also in order to add that pacers like Stateline cannot be picked off the trees in the "Hoosier" state or any other commonwealth. He is an admirably formed chestnut gelding, as safe as a church without the hopples, and has-been the great sensation the past year at Weequahic Park, if not the greatest ever uncovered there. The best line on his class may be afforded by the fact act that he has started in 14 races and won 14. It was just win, win, win all the time for him, and to give a little better entertainment to the crowds, he was scored down for a good mile the first time July 31, driven (as in many instances) by Mr. Strang. He won the first heat of his race in 2:131/4, and was then straightened away for a repeat in 2:073/4, last half in 2:023/4; and, don't forget, it was to a cart. So high were his friends on his speed (his manners were always perfect), that he was set down again for a good mile Aug. 7. Mr. Strang again had the mount, and, going to the half in 1:013/4, the horse naturally tired slightly at the finish in 2:061/2. But it stands as the best mile ever paced by an untried matinee horse over a double-O, and created a furor in Newark racing circles, besides affording his owner genuine pleasure. There isn't any other compliment that we can pay him other than to say that he is one of the finest looking geldings of the day and we hope will be raced professionally another year.
Our review of the Newbrook Stable's year is as follows: Anona, 3 times first, 8 times second, 3 times third and once fourth in 16 starts; best time 2:211/4; Lady Sybil raced six times, was once second, 4 times third and once fourth; Marie Guy started 15 times, was 4 times first, 5 times second, 4 times third and once fourth, best time 2:161/4; Southold started 12 times, won two races, second twice, 6 times third, 3 times fourth, best heat won, 2:211/4, although he trotted close to 2:15 in more than one race. Stateline's fine record we have given, and the final summary of the entire stable is 24 firsts, 15 seconds, 17 thirds and 7 fourth places.
Our concluding comment is that the Newbrook matinee stable is to be
congratulated on its showing for 1926 and upon the good prospects in
the lot for professional racing in 1927.
|Copyright 1998 - 2018 Glenn G. Geisheimer|