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HORSES

 

YEAR: 1963

HAUGHTY

Haughty, who still ranks as the only mare to have broken two minutes in the Southern Hemisphere, and the first mare bred in this part of the world to enter this select circle, has died at the age of 27 years.

Haughty won two NZ Cups, was a free-for-all winner and held a number of records. She was an out-and-out champion, and among her notable deeds was the defeat of Gold Bar in a special match race over a mile at Addington in 2.00 2/5. That was in 1943. Haughty's 4.13 3/5 for two miles was a world pacing record for a mare when she retired in 1946, and she was also the biggest stake winning mare up to that time with 13,105 10s.

Haughty's second NZ Cup victory in 1943 was a magnificent feat of stamina. From the time Gold Bar hit the front the record crowd was at a high pitch of excitment, and when Haughty, almost exhausted, passed the post a winner, the crowd on the inside flocked onto the track to surround the mare and her driver and gave them a memorable ovation. But let us go back a mile and more and attempt to regain something of the atmosphere of that light-harness drama of November 6. Will they catch him? That was the question on the lips of thousands as Gold Bar held a commanding lead going into the back stretch the last time. When Springfield Globe wilted in his attempt to bridge the gap with three and a half furlongs to go, it momentarily looked as though Gold Bar's big moment had arrived. Then, from 'out of the blue' streaked Haughty and her skilled driver, O E Hooper. A terrific roar swept through the crowd as Haughty gradually drew up to the now exhausted pacemaker and came on to win by two lengths from Countless, with Pacing Power third and Gold Bar fourth.

It must have been one of the slowest last quarters ever recorded on a fast track at Addington - 36 sec - yet it was a magnificent climax and a glowing testament to the grit and determination of victor and vanquished alike. Gold Bar had run the first mile, from a standing start, in 2.03 4/5, and reached the mile and a quarter in 2.36 2/5.

Haughty's other important successes included the NZ Sprint Championship; her mile against time of 1.59 3/5, and a mile and a quarter placed record of 2.35 2/5, which was still a world race record for a mare when she retired.

In the pedigree of Haughty are tabulated the names of three mares who will always remain cornerstones of trotting history. Her sire, Nelson Derby, was by Nelson Bingen out of Norice, an American-bred mare who finished second to Monte Carlo in the first NZ Trotting Cup. On the dam's side of Haughty's pedigree is a close-up strain of Princess, easily the greatest pacing mare of just on 80 years ago. Princess started on her dazzling career back in the early 80s. One fine afternoon that astute horseman, the late Dave Price, noticed a pacing mare showing a turn of speed on the side of a road. He bought her then and there for 20 and a 20 contingency. She was said to be by Dexter, but there was some doubt about her breeding. However, she developed into an out-and-out champion, by far the greatest pacer seen in NZ up to her time, and she was much too good for the Exhibition Cup field at Dunedin.

Later Princess went to Australia, where she produced to Hambletonian Bell Boy that good horse Prince Imperial, who became the sire of a mare which never raced, but which produced, among other winners, Thixendale, Lady Willings, Lough Neagh, Denver City, Glimpse and Logan Princess. To Happy Voyage, 2.04 1/5, Logan Princess produced Regal Voyage. Princess was probably just as great a pacer of her time as Haughty was 60 years later.

The third great mare in the pedigree is Haughty's dam, Regal Voyage, who reached Cup class. The day she won the Mid-Summer Handicap at Addington in 1931 her time, 4.19 4/5, set a new two-mile record for a mare. In third place that day was the mighty Harold Logan who, from his long mark of 84 yards, was forced to go 4.13 2/5, then a world pacing record.

Haughty was mated with Gold Bar when first retired to the stud and produced Whiz, a brilliant pacer who went blind after winning a few races; then came Jaunty, by Josedale Grattan; then Brahman (by Gold Bar), who created the NZ and Australian 2-year-old record of 2.02 1/5 against time at Addington and won his way to NZ Cup class; followed by Tolerant (by Morano), Insolent (by U Scott) and others.

Haughty was bred, owned and trained by Mr B Grice, who has now been prominently associated with trotting for nearly half a century.

Credit: 'Ribbonwood' writing in NZ Trotting Calendar 10Apr63

 

YEAR: 1963

Arania Time Trialling in 1:57 at the Red Mile, Lexington
ARANIA

"My one regret is that, in my opinion, she went to America too soon, before she really had an opportunity to show her real worth in this country," said G B Noble, when speaking of Arania, who wrote such a glorious chapter in Dominion light-harness history by taking a mile record of 1.57 against time in America - the third fastest of all time for a mare, and only a bare fraction outside the joint world mare's record held by Rosalind(T) and Her Ladyship(P), 1.56 3/4.

Arania goes to the Roydon Lodge matron's paddock - she is to be mated with Thurber Frost - with the additional distinction that she has the fastest mile record of any horse bred outside America, and is also the fastest record horse ever to be imported to this country. The loss of her first foal (by Direct Rhythm, 1.56 1/5) cannot be reduced to terms of s d.

Not overlarge, but built on fleet lines, perfectly gaited, and thoroughly dependable to the very breaking point of her outstanding ability, Arania will perhaps be remembered most in her own country for her close and gallant third (as a 4-year-old) in the Grand Final of the Inter-Dominion Championship at Addington in 1961 - won by Massacre from False Step.

In a comparatively short race career in the United States (two seasons) Arania more than held her own against some of that countries best pacers. In 1961, Arania won four races, was second twice, third three times and fourth once for $28,000. The next year her record was two wins, two seconds, one third and two fourths, which netted her $17,400 in stakes. In her winning essays, Arania beat such pacers as Doc Hobbs, recording 2.00 2/5, Merrie Gesture, her time being 2.00 2/5, Milford Hanover, when she paced 2.02 1/5, and Sweet Singer, when she clocked the excellent time of 2.33 for one mile and a quarter. Arania was also second to such speedsters as Countess Adios, Betting Time and Vicki's Jet. The last named she forced to go 1.59 4/5 to beat her narrowly. Trainer-driver W Haughton, who handled Arania in several of he races, said that she was one of the nicest mares he had ever had anything to do with.

As a 2-year-old in the 1958/59 season, Arania raced consistently for one win and six placings in 10 starts. There is little doubt that if Sun Chief had not appeared on the 2-year-old scene, Arania would have been tops in this age group that term. At her first start Arania ran Sun Chief to a head in the NZ Golden Slipper Stakes at Waimate. She again had to be content with second place behind Sun Chief when they met in the Canterbury Park Juvenile Stakes. After finishing fourth in the Invitation Stakes at Geraldine, Arania followed Sun Chief and Blue Prince home in the Timaru Nursery Stakes. Her next placing that season - third - was to Hautapu and Prince Tangier in the Robert Mortlock Memorial Juvenile Stakes at Hawera. Taken to Hutt Park, Arania held off Velvet Drive by a neck in the Wellington Juvenile Stakes, a classic race for 2-year-old fillies. In the Oamaru Juvenile Stakes Sun Chief once again proved Arania's master, beating her by three-quarters of a length. Arania's stake earnings as a 2-year-old amounted to 905.

She opened her 3-year-old career on a promising note when she beat all but Sally Boy in the Canterbury Challenge Stakes at Addington. Sally Boy created a fresh race record when he paced the mile and a quarter in 2.38 4/5. Arania returned 2.39 2/5. At the Auckland Trotting Club's meeting in September that season, Arania downed a field of three and four-year-old pacers in the Grey Lynn Handicap and followed up that effort by finishing third in the Orakei Handicap on the second day. Arania's next appearance was in the Farewell Handicap at Oamaru on Labour Day. She drew the second line, but after a brilliant beginning was soon up in second place. In the run home she was never in serious danger of defeat, and won unextended by a length.

In the NZ Derby Stakes - run in then record time - Arania finished a close third to Stormont and Sun Chief, returning 3.12 1/5 for the mile and a half journey, which stood as a record for a filly for several years. Arania proved at her next start that she was head and shoulders above the rest of the fillies of her age when she outclassed the opposition in the NZ Oaks. In that event she started from the second line, but that did not stop her from winning with something in reserve by two lenghts.

On top of that success Arania downed a field of capable three and four-year-olds in the North Island Challenge Stakes at Epsom. A second to Sun Chief in the Great Northern Derby followed and then came a second to Lady Shona in the Festival Handicap at Forbury Park in January. At the same meeting Arania added the Royal Handicap to her imposing record. Three starts later Arania won the Eastbourne Handicap at Wellington. He next four starts for the season resulted in two third placings - in the Farewell Handicap at Wellington, and in the Queens Birthday Stakes at Ashburton.

As a two and three-year-old, Arania was unlucky in that she seldom drew a good barrier position. However, at three years she started 19 times for six wins and eight placings. She won 3650 that season and was the leading stake winner among the 3-year-olds, finishing fifth on the list of stakes winners for the whole of the Dominion.

Leading up to the Inter-Dominion Championship, as a 4-year-old, Arania had two successes and several placings to her credit. She won the Hornby Handicap at Addington earlier in the season and then carried off the Dunedin Cup in January. On the opening day of the Championship series, Arania failed dismally in her qualifying heat. After being one of the early leaders and then being 'left out in the open' she stopped badly and finished tenth. Her comfortable success in her heat on the second day was the signal for a rowdy demonstration. She followed up that win by succeeding in a two-mile heat on the third day, her winning margin being a length and a half.

Trainer-driver of False Step, C C Devine, made no secret of the fact that he considered Arania the big danger in the Grand Final. Arania paced a magnificent race in the Grand Final, and when she shot through an opening on the rails and hit the lead less than a furlong out, she was being hailed the winner until first False Step and then Massacre came on the scene.

Arania, a bay mare by U Scott from Local Gold, has been trained throughout her NZ career by G B Noble at Yaldhurst for Mr R A McKenzie. She gained nine wins and 21 minor placings for 8960 in stakes here, and her American winnings were $45,400.

Credit: 'Irvington' writing in NZ Trotting Clendar 18Sep63

 

YEAR: 1963

Falsehood & Ces Donald
FALSEHOOD

Falsehood began racing in the 1858-59 season as a 4-year-old, and had a fairly busy season. He started in 21 races for three wins and seven placings. For his first success, which was gained in the February Handicap on the first day of the summer meeting of the Westland Racing Club on Saturday, February 11, Falsehood was trained and driven by his owner, Mr J Steel. Falsehood won by five lengths that day, and repeated on the second day from 24 yards, again in the hands of his owner-trainer. On the first day Falsehood had also finished a creditable third from 48 yards at his second start.

Following his win on the second day of the Westland meeting, Falsehood gained only one fourth placing in four starts and he was then transferred to the Belfast stable of C S Donald, for whom he won the Ferry Handicap at the autumn meeting of the Wellington Trotting Club when making his first appearance for that trainer. Falsehood did not win again that term, but he gained five placings in his subsequent 10 starts. Recurring unsoundness was beginning to trouble him, and he made only three appearances as a 5-year-old for one second placing.

Falsehood made an auspicious start to his 6-year-old season when he won the Geraldine Cup by three lengths. A third and a fourth in his next three starts was the best he could manage before returning to the winning list in the Farewell Handicap on the third day of the Easter meeting at Hawera. Four more starts that season brought no result. At seven years Falsehood started 29 times for four wins and nine placings. His most important successes were in the Ashburton Cup, the Selwyn Handicap on the second day of the New Year meeting of the Canterbury Park Trotting Club and the Southland Handicap at Forbury Park in May.

The present season has seen Falsehood gain the highest marks for consistency. He has won eight races and been placed 10 times in a total of 21 starts. Falsehood was beaten into third place in the Louisson Handicap at the National meeting by Scottish Light and Lordship, at his first start for the season, and on the second day filled a similar position behind Lordship and Scottish Light in the National Handicap. Falsehood made his next appearance in the Johns Handicap at New Brighton, and once again success eluded him. He was narrowly beaten by Grouse.

Taken to Hutt Park, Falsehood was rewarded for consistency when he won the President's Handicap there, beating Smokeaway and Samantha. Two more minor placings followed, then Falsehood added the Metropolitan Handicap at Forbury Park to his record, beating Master Alan and King Hal. He next won the City Free-for-all at Forbury Park, King Hal and Lordship being in the minor placings. This success was followed by a win in the Hannon Memorial at Oamaru, which brought him right into calculations for the NZ Cup.

However, success in the big event was not for Falsehood. He was slow away that day, and although right in the picture after turning for home, he had no answer for the finishing run of Lordship, who beat Falsehood by three lengths. On the later days of the meeting, Falsehood found champion Cardigan Bay just too good for him in both the Alan Matson Handicap and the Smithson Free-for-all. Another second placing - the third on end - was Falsehood's lot in the Lightning Mile at the New Year meeting of the Canterbury Park Trooing Club. In that event Falsehood was beaten by Lordship, who paced the mile in 2.01 1/5, Falsehood recording 2.01 2/5.

Falsehood then struck a winning patch, and added the H H Wauchop Handicap at Canterbury Park, and the second and third qualifing races of the Dunedin Festival Cup to his record. From 24 yards in the final of the Dunedin Festival Cup, Falsehood was beaten into third place by Smokeaway and Master Alan. He made amends a little later at the Royal meeting at Hutt Park when he led over the last mile of the Queen Elizabeth Handicap to beat his rivals comfortably by two lengths. The manner in which Falsehood has held his form throughout a busy season is a credit to his trainer C S Donald, and full credit must also go to D C Watts, who has handled Falsehood in all his races this season.

Bred by his owner, Mr D Steel, of Greymouth, Falsehood is an 8-year-old brown gelding by Fallacy (who also sired False Step), from the Grattan Loyal mare Aloysius. In all in NZ, Falsehood has won 16,165 in stakes, the result of 18 wins and 29 placings in a total of 83 starts.

Credit: 'Irvington' writing in NZ Trotting Calendar 20Mar63

 

YEAR: 1963

Vedette winner of the 1951 Inter-Dominion Grand Final
VEDETTE

Vedette winner of the Grand Final of the pacing section of the Inter-Dominion Championships at Addington in 1951, broke a leg recently at Tauherenikau and had to be destroyed. The former champion was enjoying a life of leisure since his retirement from racing in the 1958-59 season.

Vedette began racing as a 3-year-old in the 1948-49 season when he ran unplaced at his only start. He raced for nine seasons. Vedette received his early education and did his early racing in the hands of West Melton trainer, J D Litten. At his first start as a 4-year-old, Vedette beat all but Kublai Khan in the Winchester Handicap at the South Canterbury Jockey Club's meeting on October 8, 1949. This effort was follwed by another second, this time to Kelvin Lass in the second division of the Geraldine Handicap a week later.

He made amends for these defeats when taken to Oamaru shortly afterwards by beating Te Maru by three lengths in the Weston Handicap. After two more minor placings Vedette won the Dominion Challenge Stakes at Wellington from Springbok, a horse he beat on more than one occasion in the early part of his career. The North Island Challenge Stakes at Auckland was next added to Vedette's list and on this occasion he was driven by M Holmes but was still trained for this success by J D Litten. He also won the Epsom Stakes on the second day of the same meeting and from 24 yards behind he recorded 3.10 3/5 for the mile and a half journey. M Holmes was again his pilot.

Shortly after the Auckland meeting Vedette was transferred to M Holmes's team, and at his first start for his new trainer he won the Timaru Cup from Springbok by five lengths on a heavy track. The Autumn Stakes and the Plains Handicap, both at Addington, next fell easy prey to Vedette. During his 4-year-old season, Vedette started 18 times for seven wins and nine placings, his efforts netting 4915 in stakes. His first five starts as a 5-year-old resulted in five consecutive wins. They were gained in the Wilwood Handicap at Addington, the Johns Handicap at New Brighton (a race in which he defeated his stablemate Chamfer, who later won the NZ Cup), the Flying Handicap at Forbury Park, the Canterbury Centennial Handicap at Addington and the Mason Handicap also at Addington.

These brilliant successes brought Vedette right into calculations for Inter-Dominion Championship honours. Although beaten into second place by Commander Scott in the second qualifying heat on the first day and by Soangetaha on the second day, his admirers did not lose faith in this great pacer. He redeemed himself on the third day when he won his heat pointlessly, beating Maori Home by three lengths and pacing the two mile journey in 4.14 4/5.

Next came that never to be forgotten race, the Grand Final. The race went down in history as one of the greatest of all time. As late as two furlongs from the winning post Vedette appeared to have no earthly chance of finding an opening, although he was close enough to the leader, Zulu, lying about seventh. With less than a furlong to go and Soangetaha doing it nicely in front, Vedette got clear, but he had to move like greased lightning to bridge the gap and seal victory 80 yards short of the post.

Vedette raced for five more seasons following that success and he numbered amongst his wins the NZ Pacing Championship at Addington, the NZ Free-For-All at Addington, and the Electric Free-for-all ay Auckland. For the last named success he was trained by his part-owner, Mr C Johnston at Cambridge, and was driven by J Bryce Jnr.

Vedette was bred in Christchurch by Mr C Johnston, who raced him in partnership with Mr M Jenkins, and he was by Light Brigade from Queen Wrack. In all, Vedette won 19 races for 27,710 and was at the head of the winning horses' list in the 1950-51 season with the fine total of 14,260

Credit: 'Irvington' writing in NZ Trotting Calendar 13Feb63

 

YEAR: 1962

LOOKAWAY

From post to post in a mile and a quarter race at Addington in 1960 Lookaway was privately timed to run 2.29 4/5, better than a two-minute rate for the 10 furlongs. That was a truly amazing performance, stamping Lookaway as a pacer well in world class.

And every sportsman in this country will wish Mr C L Rhodes the success he richly deserves with Lookaway on his American trip. Mr Rhodes is the type of breeder and owner the sport in this country cannot exist without. He has built a model training establishment in 'Peterson Lodge', he has bred dozens and dozens of horses, and invested many thousands of pounds buying the best of blood, both for his racing and breeding establishments.

'Clarrie' has also been an indefatigable executive in owners and breeders' associations, he has been forthright in his criticism of unwarranted stake reductions, dubious building plans on racecourses, the increased burdens placed upon owners, etc. In effect, he has never been a seeker of popularity, but his candid criticisms have almost invariably been constructive and practical, and trotting is in dire need of more men like him at this very moment. For these reasons - and others - the Calendar wishes to join in the widespread good wishes that will accompany Mr Rhodes and Lookaway on their American venture.

Lookaway has had 21 wins and 18 placings for 20,967 5s in stakes. He has shown great brilliance over all distances on grass or clay tracks. He has taken records of 2.01 3/5 for one mile, 2.33 3/5 for one mile and a quarter, 2.53 4/5 for one mile and three furlongs, 3.12 1/5 for one mile and a half, 3.22 3/5 for one mile and five furlongs, and 4.12 1/5 for two miles, the last time being recorded at Addington in November 1960, when he finished third to False Step and Sun Chief in the NZ Cup.

Lookaway showed brilliant handicap form as a 3-year-old when trained by M Holmes and the following season he became the first 4-year-old to win the NZ Cup, beating Thunder by five lengths, with La Mignon and False Step next after recording 4.14 4/5 for the distance. He also won the NZ Free-For-All at the same age.

Lookaway failed in the 1958 NZ Cup and some months later his form fell away. Late in 1959 he was sent to Invercargill where he was prepared by C H G Irvine, a prominent veterinary surgeon. He soon struck form and at his last start in that season he recorded one of the most brilliant sprint efforts ever seen at Addington. Driven by Irvine, he was almost last into the straight and so far back that his chances looked hopeless. He was switched almost to the outside fence and he unwound a tremendous burst of speed which carried him past Guiseppe short of the post and enabled him to win by two lengths.

Lookaway that day was off 48yds and he paced the mile and a quarter in 2.33 3/5, one of the fastest times recorded in NZ. Actually, for the mile and a quarter from the limit starting point to the finish he was privately timed at 2.29 4/5, or under a two-minute clip! Lookaway later contested the Inter-Dominion Championship series at Addington when trained by Irvine. He failed to qualify for the Grand Final, but paid expenses at the meeting with a slashing win in a comsolation race.

Lookaway then returned to Templeton and rejoined L C Roper's team. He gained one win and one placing for Roper. He paced an outstanding race to finish fourth to Invicta, Patchwork and Scottish Command in the NZ Cup, and a few days later he beat Aldora most convincingly in the Ollivier Handicap after starting from 36yds. He paced the mile and five furlongs that day in the outstanding time of 3.22 3/5.

Lookaway raced brilliantly at the Festival Cup meeting at Forbury Park, but he failed to reach a place. However, he paced some sound races and on the first night when he rushed to the lead in the middle stages of his race, he impressed officials from Yonker Raceway by pacing his first mile in 2.03 2/5. Luck was against him later at the meeting.

Lookaway is an 8-year-old gelding by Light Brigade from the U Scott mare Raceway, who traces back to the imported mare, Bonilene, founder of a highly-successful winning family, including another NZ Cup winner in Adorian.

Credit: 'Ribbonwood' writing in NZ Trotting Calandar 9May62

 

YEAR: 1962

U SCOTT

U Scott sire of champions of both gaits and the winners of over 1,000,000 in stakes in three countries - NZ, Australia and the USA - died at Roydon Lodge Stud las week. U Scott was in his 31st year. He had become a living legend.

Class and breeding were strongly ingrained in the conformation of U Scott, a compact, handsome, jet black horse, standing 15.3 hands at maturity, with a bloodlike, clean-cut head in character with the standardbred monarch he was to become. An abundance of what the geneticists call nerve force, coupled with a 'Latin' temperament inflamed from time to time by his life-long affliction of an internal abscess in a foot, made U Scott an animal with whom no liberties could be taken - but one man, in particular, succeeded in calming the boisterous spirits of U Scott.

Andrew (Sandy) Stewart was the stud groom who put in charge of U Scott in 1943 formed one of those strange and inexplicable affinities with his rebel charge that must have been the inspiration for more than one great animal narrative, such as 'Black Bess', 'Lassie' and the current television feature 'Fury'. Sandy's affinity with U Scott was to grow into an obsession. After he became U Scott's acknowledged 'keeper' no one else dared to lay a hand on the horse when Sandy was on the farm, and he was very rarely off it. In fact, it was only with the greatest difficulty that George Noble was able to persuade Sandy to take an isolated holiday - he invariably had to resort to the stratagem of personally buying Sandy's rail ticket and making certain the old gentleman was still on the train when it pulled out! Sandy was never happy when he was off the place, and he invented numerous excuses in order to keep his vacations down to a bare minimum.

Of course, from time immemorial men have loved horses, and Sandy doted on U Scott; and U Scott responded to his groom's mixture of firmness, kindness and cajolery in a way that was completely uncanny to the uninitiated. Sandy stropped the horse himself, he talked to him like a Dutch uncle, he would walk any distance, scythe in hand, to gather a special treat of succulent grass or clover or thistles for his pride and joy. In short, Sandy Stewart was dedicated to U Scott, as dedicated, probably, as humanly possible.

Sandy is still an active unit of the Roydon Lodge team, he became a walking encyclopaedia on U Scott, U Scott's progeny and their performances - here and abroad - and of U Scott's siring sons and producing daughters. Nothing worth knowing about U Scott or written about him ever escaped Sandy Stewart's notice. For Sandy, now in his eighties, there was no horse like U Scott, or ever could be again.

A measure of U Scott's greatness - and the tough fibre of the horse - was revealed soon after Noble arrived at Roydon Lodge from Australia in August 1941, to become private trainer to Sir John McKenzie. U Scott had been out of training for nearly two years. Put back into work, barely three months later he paced two miles in 4.16, the last mile and a half in 3.09. The abscess continued to trouble U Scott, however, and Noble was reluctantly compelled to retire him permanently. "He had sheer brilliance," said Noble. "He probably have been a two-minute horse but for the abscess - the seedy foot must have caused him acute pain at times, especially when the concussion of fast work aggravated the pressure," continued Noble, who added, "otherwise U Scott was as sound as a bell."

U Scott started life as a trotter and he took a matinee record of 2.11 at two years in America before being purchsed from his breeder, Mr J O McAllister, of Lexington, by the late Sir John McKenzie and imported to NZ in 1935. U Scott commenced racing soon after his arrival here. Converted to pacing, at his first appearance as a 4-year-old in the 1935-36 season, he finished second in the Trial Handicap at Wyndham in March to Night Voyage. He was driven that day by J Bryce, Jnr. After three unplaced performances, U Scott opened his winning accounton the first day of the South Canterbury Jockey Club's Winter meeting in May. Again driven by J Bryce, Jnr, U Scott beat Maltravers and Aid-de-Camp in the Opihi Handicap. Two starts later, U Scott was beaten into second place by Credit Funds in the Winchmore Handicap at the Ashburton County Racing Club's winter meeting.

As a 5-year-old, U Scott started 11 times for five wins and four placings, including a decisive win from a champion filly in Parisienne at Hutt Park. At six years he opened the season on a most impressive note when, at his second start, he won the Lincoln Handicap at Addington, beating William Tell and Aid-de-Camp. He was also successful in the Islington Handicap on the thrd day of the meeting. Three more wins came U Scott's way that season, his most notable being his victory over Pot Luck and Supertax in the third heat of the third qualifying race at the Inter-Dominion Championships at Addington. U Scott was trained for that race by F C Dunlevy, and was driven by F (Free) Holmes, who allowed the black stallion to run along in front. Nothing could get near U Scott in the run home, and he passed the post three lengths clear of Pot Luck. He looked a Triton among the minnows that day, and Pot Luck was no minnow! In the Grand Final, won by Pot Luck, U Scott was driven in behind, and he pulled so hard that he literally 'choked' himself and failed to finish in the money.

In all, U Scott started 30 times for 11 wins, 6 placings and 2055 in stakes. He raced in a period when prizemoney had become almost microscopic. Throughout his career, U Scott was troubled with recurring soreness in a front foot, and there is no doubt that if he had been completely sound his record on the racetrack would have been much better. He could both sprint and stay and was a racehorse of unflinching courage.

U Scott was by Scotland, 1.59 1/4, a distinguished representative of the Peter The Great line. Scotland sired 23 in the two-minute list.Scotland's dam, Roya McKinney, was a famous two-minute producer, and was by the mighty McKinney from Princess Royal, a daughter of Chimes, from whom in a direct male line stems the present USA siring sensation Adios.

U Scott's dam, Lillian Hilta, was by U Forbes, 2.21 1/2, a son of J Malcolm Forbes, 2.08, who was a half-brother (by Bingen) to Peter The Great. J Malcolm Forbes himself was described by John Hervey as one of the "most influencial" sires of his day, in fact at one time "unapproached as a progenitor of extreme early speed." U Forbes dam, Iviolette, was by Moko, a "great Futurity sire" who for many years was the premier sire at Walnut Hall Farm and headed the American sires' list in 1911.

Allarine Watts, dam of Lillian Hilta, was by Generaln Watts, 2.06 3/4, a noted son of the great fountainhead of speed, Axworthy himself. General Watts was the world champion 3-year-old trotter of 1907 and a highly successful sire with 274 standard performers to his credit. Alla P, dam of Allarine Watts, was by Palo Alto, 2.08 3/4, champion trotting stallion of the world for some years and whose record, to high wheels, still stands as the "world standard for entire horses." Palo Alto was described in early American breeding manuals as a 'half-bred' because he was by Electioneer out of the thoroughbred mare Dame Winnie. Electioneer, of course, sired (among many other celebrities) Chimes, already referred to above as the ancestor of Adios.

Lula Wilkes, fourth dam of U Scott, was a daughter of George Wilkes, 2.22, sire of Axworthy, and ons of the cornerstones of the standard breed. A noted performer and champion trotting stallion of his time, George Wilkes raced from five years to 16 years. In 12 seasons he started in 69 races (more than 200 heats) for 27 wins and 38 placings. George Wilkes became America's leading sire of the late 1870s and died in 1882 "acclaimed the founder of the most wonderful family of colt trotters that the Blue Grass (Kentucky) had ever produced..."

U Scott has become the leading sire of two-minute performers outside America with three in the list: Arania(1.57), Caduceus(1.57 2/5) and Highland Fling(1.57 4/5) and last season he equalled the long-standing record of Jack Potts by heading the Dominion sires' list nine times. Another record he cannot fail to break within a season or two is as a sire of individual winners - the only sire ahead of him in this regard at present in Dillon Hall with 397. U Scott's individual winners in the Dominion now total 371. U Scott, just over three seasons ago, passed Dillon Hall's previous record for races won, a record that had stood to the credit of Jack Potts up till the 1956-57 season. Dillon Hall passed this total during that season and U Scott has now 'distanced' them both with his total to date of well over 1750.

U Scott's two famous pacing sons, Caduceus (1.57 3/5 - he went 1.57 2/5 in the USA as well) and Highland Fling (1.57 4/5 - dual NZ Cup winner) hold the fastest mile records in the Dominion, and his other pacing celebrities include his world-famous daughter Arania, whose 1.57 against time on America's 'Red Mile' is only 1/5 second outside the mares world record; Van Dieman(4.11 2/5, NZ Cup and Royal Cup; Burns Night(Free-for-all; 3.22 1m 5f); Petite Yvonne(2.03 1/5; Free-for-all); Young Charles(4.10 4/5/0; Burt Scott(Free-for-all); Nyallo Scott(Free-for-all; 3.23 1m 5f); Samantha(2.02), Highland Air, Prince Polka, Hilda Scott, Scottish Lady, Mayneen, Bel Hamed, Monaro, Scottish Command, In The Mood, Unite, Commander Scot, Trusty Scot, Merval, Riviera, Highland Scott, Lavengro and Admit. His trotters include Ariel Scott, Fantom, Barrier Reef, Highland Kilt and Ladt Scott, all champions, and as a sire of classic winners his record is unexcelled.

U Scott's progeny have won approximately 940,000 to date in NZ, and if his Australian and American winnings could be added, the grand total would be far in advance of a millon pounds. He has eclipsed all other standardbred sires - the nearest to him, Dillon Hall, is about a quarter of a millon pounds behind. U Scott reached the head of the brood-mare sires' list in the 1957-58 season, and since then he has been runner-up more than once. U Scott's progress as a broodmare sire was painfully slow until fairly recent years, but his daughters have amply made up for their delayed action by producing such topo racehorses as Lordship, Ordeal, Durban Chief, Lookaway, Scottish Light, When, Grouse, Gentry and Fourth Edition in a relatively short period.

U Scotts sons include Noble Scott, who has topped the Australian sires' list on a number of occasions; and Highland Fling has been one of the leading sires of New South Wales for several seasons past. In NZ U Scott stallions that have left winners include Van Dieman, Scottish Star, Morano, Burns Night, Gay Piper, King Scott, Young Charles, Highland Chief, widower Scott, Scotland's Pride, Highland Kilt and by next season his world renowned son Caduceus will be back at the stud here.

-o0o-

Norman Pierce writing in NZ Trotting Calendar 24Jun80

The influence of former champion sire U Scott, brought to NZ by the late Sir John McKenzie for his Roydon Lodge Stud, continues to be strikingly demonstrated with each passing season.

In North America last season, to the end of 1979, U Scott had seven fresh 2:00 credits as a broodmare sire, giving him a total of 51 mares who have been 2:00 producers. This is five more than his own sire Scotland who was one of the premier sires of the day and finished up siring 46 2:00 producing mares. U Scott is seventeenth on the overall American broodmare sires' list which is headed by Tar Heel (290), Adios (198), Good Time (147), Knight Dream (118) and Bye Bye Byrd (100).

Other sires who spent their stud life in NZ on the American broodmare sires' list are Light Brigade with 25 2:00 producing mares, Garrison Hanover, who had 11 newcomers in 1979, with 18, Dillon Hall with 16, Thurber Frost 15, Smokey Hanover 12, and Fallacy and Johnny Globe, both 10.

They are creditable totals in a very competitive American field without having weight of numbers on their side.

Credit: 'Ribbonwood' writing in NZ Trotting Calendar 7Nov62

 

YEAR: 1961

INVICTA

As a student with duties I missed the 1961 NZ Cup. My first question as I hopped on the Lincoln bus home was, "Who won the Cup?" Bus drivers knew a lot about racing in those days. I was told, with disbelief on both sided, that it had bee Invicta. Invicta? How did that happen?

Happen it had. Given the run of the race by Steve Edge one of the younger trainers to have won a Cup, the old horse, an eleven-year-old, held out the unlucky Patchwork in a desperate finish. Nothing approaching that age has won the Cup since. As became known, Edge had employed staff especially to walk Invicta up to five hours a day on the roads through the winter of that year but could still give him only two lead up starts, unplaced runs in the Flying Stakes and the Hannon Memorial. So it was no surprise he paid 19 pounds to win. In spite of his chronically bad legs, Invicta managed to make the post in the 1962 Cup but the magic was long gone.

The irony was that but for a racing scandal Invicta may have been Cecil Devine's unprecedented fourth successive Cup winner. When Devine and Jack Litten were given six months over the 'whip incident'(suspensions were what they meant in those days) Devine dispersed several of his racing team. Invicta then going through the grades was won of them. Owner Les Duff gave the horse to his son-in-law Edge who was then training a small team at Rakaia. Edge also later trained a star in Light Lord from the same family as Invicta for the Duff family.

Ironically Percy Watson whose Purple Patch breed was then one of the most famous in the country, gave Lady Belmer to Devine to prepare for the Cup but she broke early and ran exceptionally well for sixth. Two years earlier her driver Maurice Holmes had been tipped from the cart in the race. Watson's other runner in 1961 was Patchwork. One man's luck in racing is inevitably another man's poison.

Credit: David McCarthy writing in Harnessed Feb 2016

 

YEAR: 1961

POT LUCK

The death was reported recently of Pot Luck, one of the Dominion's outstanding pacers of his era.

Bred by Mr J D Smith at New Brighton, Pot Luck was secured as an early 3-year-old by Mr H J Stafford for whom he was trained by M Holmes. His most important success was gained in the Grand Final in the Inter-Dominion Championships of 1938, but Parisienne was declared Grand Champion on a points system.

Pot Luck had three starts as a 2-year-old for his then breeder-owner-trainer, J D Smith, but failed to gain a place. After five unsuccessful appearances at the beginning of his 3-year-old career Pot Luck drew attention to his future prospects when he finished second in the Riccarton Stakes to Double Great. For that placing he was trained and driven by Smith.

Shortly afterwards he was bought by Mr Stafford and entered the stable of M Holmes. In the NZ Champion Stakes at Ashburton that year he beat all but Frisco Lady. Four successes in a row followed, and after being beaten into second place by Stirling Lady in the Final Handicap at the Wyndham Trotting Club's meeting in March, he made amends by winning his next two starts. One of those wins was in the All-Aged Stakes at Ashburton, which was his last start for that season.

As a 4-year-old, Pot Luck made 28 appearances, winning six races and gaining eight placings. He opened his winning account as a 5-year-old when he was successful in the Burwood Handicap at New Brighton in September of that year and later added the Louisson Handicap and the Inter-Dominion Grand Final to his record before the season had closed. In addition that term, Pot Luck was in the minor money on seven occasions.

Pot Luck did not win a race as a 6-year-old but returned to the winning list at seven years, winning the Wellington Cup and the Jubilee Handicap at New Brighton. He was also placed 11 times that season. His sole success the next term was gained in the King's Handicap at the National meeting at Addington when he beat Lightning Lady by half a head. After failing to regain form the following season Pot Luck was retired.

By Jack Potts, Pot Luck was out of a Harold Dillon mare, Hope Dillon, who also left another winner to Jack Potts in Wishful. In all Pot Luck won 18 races for stakes amounting to 8092. Stakes were on a much lower scale when he raced. As a comparison, the stake for the Grand Final in Pot Luck's year was 2350, compared with 10,000 this year. He was 28 when he died.

Credit: 'Irvington' writing in NZ Trotting Calendar 9Aug61

 

YEAR: 1961

RUPEE

The death was reported recently of champion pacer Rupee who, in a racing career extending over six seasons, had 24 starts for 14 wins, five seconds, two thirds and one fourth for 14,880 in stakes. He was undefeated in his first nine starts.

A bay horse by a NZ Derby Stakes winner in Gold Chief from the Jack Potts mare, Canister, Rupee was bred by his owner, J Grice, who trained him throughout his career. He was driven in practically all of his races by D Townley.

Rupee first drew attention to his ability when he won the Timaru Nursery Stakes at his first race start from Tatsy Hall and Van Dyke. He had only two more starts that term, winning the NZ Welcome Stakes and the NZ Sapling Stakes.

As a 3-year-old the following season he won the NZ Derby Stakes, the NZ Champion Stakes and the NZ Futurity Stakes. They were his only appearances that term. Rupee chalked up three more wins as a 4-year-old before he met his first defeat which came in the Autumn Stakes at the Addington Easter meeting when he was narrowly beaten by Excelsa.

Throughout his career Rupee set a main for winning first up after being away from racing for several weeks. His first start as a 5-year-old was in the Louisson Handicap in August at Addington, a race he won comfortably by a length and a half. At the same meeting in the National Handicap, Rupee was beaten into third place. Denbry won from Our Roger.

Rupee did not appear again until he took his place in the field for the memorable NZ Cup on 1954. He was installed favourite over Johnny Globe who won in the world record time of 4.07 3/5. Young Charles was second and Rupee third. On the third day of the same meeting, Rupee made amends by winning the Ollivier Free-for-all from Tactician, Au Revoir and Johnny Globe. Ribands proved too good for Rupee on the concluding day of that meeting in the NZ Pacing Championship. Ribands paced the mile and five furlongs journey in the then world record time of 3.21 3/5, beating Rupee by four lengths. Rupee went 3.22 2/5. His last appearance for that season was in the Electric Stakes at Addington, in which he beat such pacers as Tactician, Thelma Globe and Petite Yvonne.

Rupee won only one race as a 6-year-old - the Farewell Handicap at the Addington National meeting. That season he made his second attempt to win the NZ Cup but had to be content with second place behind Our Roger. In only two starts as a 7-year-old, Rupee won the Lightning Handicap in August and was unplaced in the Ashburton Flying Stakes - his last race appearance.

In the NZ Cup of 1954, Rupee returned 4.12 for the two mile journey and registered 3.07 1/5 for the mile and a half in the Ollivier Free-for-all. When making his second attempt to win the Ollivier Free-for-all, Rupee paced the distance in 3.05 4/5 when second to Caduceus.



Credit: 'Irvington' writing in NZ Trotting Calendar 31May61

 

YEAR: 1961

THUNDER

Winner of the NZ Cup in 1956 and second to Lookaway in the same race the next year, Thunder, one of the greatest stayers ever to race in the Dominion, has been retired from racing. He was being prepared for racing at the Inter-Dominion Championship series but was very sore when he raced in a heat at the Addington trials last week.

Thunder was by no means the smoothest pacer to race, and was often called ungainly and clumsy; many were so uncharitable as to tag him carty. But he was still the complete answer to any question of the fastest passage between any two given trotting or pacing points when in his prime.

Thunder's meteoric rise from maiden class to the top of the tree was accomplished within the short space of 19 months. During his career Thunder won 18,762 10s in stakes in NZ, the result of 16 wins and 14 placings. He also won a consolation race at the 1960 Inter-Dominion series at Harold Park and earned 940.

"This is the only breed of horses we have ever raced," said Mr Erik Rutherford, in replying on behalf of the partners who raced Thunder, when the NZ Cup was presented after Thunder's success. "The family goes back to Acron and other good winners."

Mr Rutherford was a partner in Thunder's dam, Busted Flush, a very good winner herself. From Millie C, the foundation mare of this family - a very brilliant as well as a good staying line - stemmed a previous NZ Cup winner in Marlene, and a champion of the early 1920,s in Acron. Busted Flush was got by Jack Potts(imp) from Millie de Oro, by Rey de Oro(imp) from Millie C, who was by Wildmoor from a mare by Ha Ha(imp). A host of good winners trace to this taproot.

Thunder was the first NZ Cup winner sired by Light Brigade and he took records of 3.10 1/5 for one mile and a half, 3.24 2/5 for one mile and five furlongs and 4.13 4/5 for two miles.

Thunder was trained for all his successes by the Templeton trainer, C C Devine.

Credit: NZ Trotting Calendar 8Feb61

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