xt70cf9j405t https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt70cf9j405t/data/mets.xml Hodgman, George, 1824- 1901  books b98-51-42632292 English Grant Richards, : London : Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Hodgman, George, 1824- Horse racing.Warren, Charles R. Sixty years on the turf  : the life and times of George Hodgman, 1840-1900 / edited by Charles R. Warren ; with illustrations. text Sixty years on the turf  : the life and times of George Hodgman, 1840-1900 / edited by Charles R. Warren ; with illustrations. 1901 2002 true xt70cf9j405t section xt70cf9j405t 




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   Turf Memories of Thirty Veors. By SYnDF-
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From a Photo by Clarence flailey. Vewmar,el





      1840- 1 900







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LONG prefaces nowadays are companions in mis-
fortune of long sermons-in being out of date. Nor,
unless the preface bear to the book the importance
the postscript does usually to the lady's letter, is
the, so to speak, preliminary or explanatory notice
of much purpose. Still, a few words of why this
book of "Reminiscences" came to be written, and
how it was put into shape, may be held pardonable.
Mr. Hodgman is now in his seventy-seventh year,
and for over sixty seasons has he been associated
actively with the Turf. In that considerable period
he has met, naturally, "all sorts and conditions of
men," and stored in a marvellous memory is a rare
harvest of' anecdote, from which, in paddock or at
dinner-table, he has drawn for the amusement of his
friends, many of' whom, time back, pleaded the
desirability of publication. Mr. Hodgman, however,
was not in a mood for the pen, and perhaps would
never have seriously regarded the idea but for the
insistence of the late Lord Russell of Killowen.


Two years ago at Ascot his lordship, who was one
of Mr. Hodgman's best friends, seized the occasion
to test his memory by " leading questions." He
received such an avalanche of anecdote that he
turned to Mr. Hodgman and said, " Hodgman, you
ought to publish your Reminiscences.' " If I did,
my lord," was the answer, " I should need the hell)
of one or two like you to put theni together."
" And that should be no trouble. You really ought
to publish." Nor is it too much to say that had Lord
Russell been spared he would have stood sponsor for
the volume.
  Helen's babies wanted to see the works go round,
and the Turf world may be similarly curious as to
how the ensuing pages were compiled. Briefly,
then, I have spent some three months with Mr.
Hodgman, taken note of his reminiscences, and
welded them into some degree of cohesion.
  I wish to add that the chapter on the Jockeys
was penned some time ago. This I mention because
I notice in the " Sheet Calendar " of' March 8, 1901,
licences were recorded as taken out for over a
hundred apprentices.  Apparently the policy of
' drifting" has received a check. It remains to be
seen whether the lost ground can be recovered.
                            CHAS. R. WARREN.



                          CHAPTER I
Early days-A useful reminder-Rogues and rascals-My first " book
    "' Feathers to sell "-I win a " pony "-Mr. Tim Kelly and " Hop, step,
    and a jump "-I win a "century "-Kelly advises London-Tattersall's
    Yard on Sundays-Caurouch for the Cesarewitch of 1847-I leave
    Ramsgate for London-Sweeps and lotteries-I draw the Car-
    Colonel Peel's Cambridgeshire three (1848)-Small stakes, but good
    racing-Lenient handicapping; no stakes-Derby and Oaks winners
    in 100 guineas Plate .Pp. 9-19

                         CHAPTER I]
Financial reverses-Flying Dutchman's Derby-A dread of Derbies-
    Layers of "safe 'uns "-Bon Mot's Liverpool Summer Cup-A home-
    made guide-Profit therefrom-A run from Bedford Racecourse to
    Bletchley-The Cambridgeshire of 1851-A near prophecy-A Good
    Friday visit to Newmarket-Concerning Weathergage-A Derby
    thrown away-Objections to Plaiting-A "tip" for Stockwell-His
    Derby defeat-Davies " The Leviathan "-His heavy losses over
    Daniel O'Rourke-The turn of the tide-My first racehorse Pp. 20-35

                        CHAPTER III
Davies "The Leviathan "-His humble start-His letter in retirement-
   Derby and Oaks losses-A wonderful Ascot-An equine battle-
   Davies's character-The man who could not whistle-Accident and
   assault-A sad end .Pp. 36-42

                        CHAPTER IV
Admiral Rous-Handicappers of to-day-Their disabilities-My first bet
   with the Admiral-" Young Impudence "-P'utting weight on Gridiron
   -Handicapping at dinner-The Derby course-Mr. Dorling's economy
   prevented-Mrs. Rous's opinion of myself-" He's sure to doyou ! "-A
   bet in the dark-The Admiral's testimonial-How conceived-A
   notable menu .Pp. 43-56



                         CHAPTER V
Mr. Sykes-Mr. "D'Orsay" Clark-A Cesarewitch Trial-A commission
   saved-A negligent trainer-" Mr. Sykes " at Egham-Admiral Rous
   angered-Mr. Sykes vernus Robgill-Major Brabazon's bets-Mr.
   Greville-A "close" character-His Muscovite bets-Perkins pockets
   same-Mr. Shelley-'i In the wrong Boat "-Eleven thousand pounds
   posted .Pp. 57-70

                        CHAPTER VI
Wild Dayrell's Derby-His "nobbling" arranged-How   prevented-A
   costly "getting out"-Palmer the Poisoner-Marlow's opinion-Mr.
   Fred Swindell " readied "-Saved by the success of Doubt-Cockburn's
   grim assurance-Who set the law in motion .  .  .   Pp. 71-78

                        CHAPTER VII
Virago-The best filly of last century-Unplaced in a selling race !-Mr.
   William Day in error-Heavy Chester Cup betting-The handicapper
   awake-City and Suburban and Great Metropolitan won on one day
   -Virago's Epsom trial-The real weights-Mr. Lambert's letter-
   "Something out of Virago "-Lord Glasgow-Insistence on more
   weight-" Don't hesitate to shoot"-A memorable Saturday on the
   Heath-Racing for Life                              Pp. 79-90

                       CHAPTER VIII
Mr. Drinkald-His eccentric attire-Why I laid Boiardo for the St.
   Leger of 1854-A riot at Doncaster-The fighting brothers Broome-
   Black Tommy and the Derby-Ten Thousand pounds to a suit of
   clothes-Mr. Drinkald's bitter pill-Blink Bonny's triumph-The Leger
   Defeat-Mr. Swindell's advice-The Jackson confederacy-Prioress's
   Cesarewitch-A dead-heat between three-A change of jockeys and of
   result-Mv opinion of Fordham-How Captain Little "kidded" him
   -Heiress's defeats-Dulcibella's Cesarewitch-Her previous running-
   Ladies in hiding .Pp. 91-102

                        CHAPTER IX

Lord Brampton (Sir Henry Hawkins)-On Friendship-His letter-A
   shooting incident at Beddington-The long-eared parson-Shillelagh
   -His successes-Accident and death-I sue the Railway Company-
   Mr. Hawkins against me-I win once and lose twice-Hawkins on
   "The Claimant "-His belief in him-His later opinion-A fortunate
   "get out "-The Claimant sharpens a knife  .  .  . Pp. 105-113



                        CHAPTER X
Mr. "Ned" Smith-His financial difficulties-A poaching episode-His
    victim's threat-" Who shot the fox  "-Margery Daw-Useless for
    racing--A paddock failure-I give her away-Her subsequent value-
    She throws See Saw and Ecossais-Extraordinary career of the latter
    -Doeskin: another " gift horse "-Rocket's trial for the Cesarewitch
    of 1858-Faith lost-I try to buy Tame Deer-Confidence in Rocket
    restored-Colonel Forester's opinion-Rocket's victory-Mr. Edward
    Green-His "averaging" habit-How   I purchased Emigrant-Mr.
    Green has half share-Emigrant's Grand National training-Accident
    to his jockey, Charlie Boyce-I hedge my money-Boyce wins with
    one arm tied up-Lucas's Repository-Mr. Hodgson forces a fight-
    The result-Heavy damages claimed-I sell my responsibility-The
    trial-Baron Martin suggests arbitration-Acceptance of Admiral
    Rous-His judgment.                                Pp. 114-134

                         CHAPTER XI
Sir Joseph Hawley-Reasons for engaging John Porter as trainer-I sell
    Sir Joseph The Beacon-His sarcasm about that horse's food-" Was
    it sawdust "-Lord Westmorland-A dispute over my boy Morris-I
    give way, and beat his lordship-Tom Heartfield-A fine horseman-
    Vestminster-His trial-I mystify Lord Westmorland-A good haul-
    Vestminster and the Cambridgeshire-A pertinacious " tout "--Strong
    measures necessary-An ague-stricken " chucker-out "-My confidence
    in Vestminster-Mr. Gideon's warning about Cerdagne-Mr. Foy's
    "little beggar"-The French lilly handsomely beaten .  Pp. 135-151

                        CHAPTER     XII
Bacecourses that were and are not-Thunder at, Stamford-How I missed
   him-Stamford's extinction: reason-Mr. Sam Merrv and Davies the
   Leviathan-Mr. Merr's stratagem-Davies' good humour-Shrews-
   burv-Mr. John Frail-" Passage of arms " with Mr. Attorney-General
   Cockburn- Funnv things at Shrewsbury-" A New Race "-The
   getting-home stakes-An undesirable entry-The difficulty solved-
   We go for the ' undesirable "-An extraordinary race-The sharing of
   the spoils-Egliam-Mr- James Weatherby loses his watch-Mr.
   Lefevre's opinion of racecourse thieves' cleverness-The watch again
   disappears-And again-" For the last time"  .  .  Pp. 1,52-16.5

                       CHAPTER XlII
Custance and Fordham-Dr. Shorthouse's frank criticism-" Driving Jack
   out of Town"-Archer's opinion of Fordham-Macaroni's Derby-Lord
   Clifden beaten a head-Mr. Oldaker's unfortunate statement-The
   serious result to himself-Fordham heart-broken-Mr. William Dav
   "carpeted ".Pp. 166-174


                       CONT ENTS

                       CHAPTER XIV
My best horse-Victorious-His unsightly head-I buy him for 125 sovs.
    -Vision-Her Brocklesby victory-Subsequent successes-Her trial
    with Victorious-He gives her 2 st.-The defeat of Le Bearnais-Tom
    Jennings's opinion-The Goodwood trial-The Sweepstakes victory-
    Admiral Rous's idea-The Nursery success-Lord Granville takes
    under the odds-Jackson's disgraceful offer-A dead-heat at Wolver-
    hampton: Cause of same-Shelly feet-Mr. Jackson and the "Short-
    house" ale-Victor-How purchased-Frozen out at Lincoln-" Not
    quite like a thoroughbred "-A half-crown for luck-A Royal Hunt
    Cup track-A Royal Hunt Cup trial-Mr. George Herring drinks
    champagne and throws " cold water "-Victor's victory-He breaks
    down in the Cambridgeshire-Sold for an old song-Success at the
    stud                                             Pp. 175-190

                        CHAPTER XV
Matches-Fashionable forty years ago-A match I lost and won by-Lord
   Westmorland lays the odds, but hedges-My " old brood mare," Paul
   Jones !-Match with Admiral Rous-Mr. "Spectacle" Perry-His
   sporting ambition-He presents me with Otho, who beats his Tubal
   Cain-Another match-Mr. Perry satisfied-Sensational betting over
   a match at Goodwoodc-Mr. " Teddy " Brayley-His want of judgment
   and obstinacy-Morris's opinion of his Derby horse-Paul Jones's
   Chester Cup trial with Mariner-Even weights or no gallop-The
   result-Mr. Brayley helps himself-Paul Jones as a yearling and a
   two-year-old-His Derby and Brighton running-Why wrong-I train
   him myself for the St. Leger-A satisfactory trial-Steel gets me
   37,000 to 1000-An unlucky defeat-Fordham's explanation-Mr.
   Graham's munificence-Inexplicable Cesarewitch running-Butler's
   folly-An unfortunate cannon-A ' certainty " upset .  Pp. 191-211

                       CHAPTER XVI

The Duke of Hamilton-He puts me a thousand on Valiant-A "good
   thing "-The Duke misses a chance-What I said to him-His laugh-
   ing agreement-I buy John Davis of him-The Brighton Stakes run-
   ning-" Tubby " Morris and Billy Nichol think they ' smell a rat "-
   A drive to Telscombe-John Davis's extraordinary trials-He beats
   Provider 150 yards-Fordham wishes to ride at 14 lb. overweight-I
   lose Butler and put up Sammy Mordan-His eccentric disobedience-
   A Cesarewitch thrown away-I sell John Davis for 19 gs.-The
   Stewards' Cup-The Duke of Hamilton's 'Midlothian and Lollypop-
   His Grace's declaration-His orders to Custance-My orders-I try to
   buy Sutler .Pp. 212-224



                       CHAPTER XVII

Mr. Fred Swindell and theTruth gelding (1874)-Admiral Rous's hesitancy
    -His message to Mr. Swindell and the bluffing answer-I fall into the
    trap, and lay the gelding for the Cesarewitch-Mr. Swindell's silence
    -The Admiral's bet and wish-Archer's weakness-The " good thing "
    fails-Woodlands for the Cesarewitch of 1876-The Admiral's dis-
    belief-Some fine bets-Rosebery prevents their realisation-The
    Curate-Tom Green's idea of not hurrying a horse-The Lincolnshire
    Handicap-How raised to a thousand pounds-The Ring subscribe a
    "monkey "-Mr Ford's Gratitude.                   Pp. 225-237

                      CHAPTER XVIII

Veni, Vidi, Vici, especially Vici-The Nottingham fiasco-What the
   faithful paragraphists invented-I present Vici to Fordham-Tbe
   incident of the lane-Tom Cannon comes into possession-He thinks
   he is in luck's way-Mr. Tubbs's cheque: its value-King Lud-Deter-
   mination to purchase-Mr. Tom Lawley's advice to Lord Lonsdale-
   King Lud's Ebor running-Hi, Lordship's promise-I get good odds
   -An easy Cesarewitch victory .Pp. 238-246

                       CHAPTER XIX

Jockeys-The American Invasion-The poet's mistake-Americans in 1857
   -Mr. Ten Broeck and English jockeys-The two sides of the shield-
   The causes of our decay-Apathy of trainers-Disinclination of
   owners-A " corner " in jockeys-The " little boy " bogey-What about
   Johnny Reiff -Why he is an exception-A Gilbertian travesty-A
   plea for a lower scale-Some Chester Cup examples-Striking figures
   -The easiest proves the hardest way-Why trainers are negligent-
   Thomas Dawson-Old John Osborne-J. Godding-Matthew Dawson
   -Why I put up Morris-Admiral Rous's Comment-" My boys"-
   Heartfield, Morris, Quince, &c.-Confirmation by Custance-The good
   the Americans have effected-Mr. Greville's indignation at an attempt
   to ruin his jockey-The striking case of Herbert Jones-W. E Elsey's
   wisdom-Inimical surroundings for bo3 s-E. Hunt's Cup successes-
   What they brought him-Jockeys' fees protected-Mr. W. G. Craven's
   wise legislation-What will be the end  .  .  .  Pp. 247-269



                       CHAPTER XX

Another tale of Mr. Swindell-He and Mr. B. Phillips seek a " settling"
   in Manchester-The nature of the same-A case of obstinacy-
   Captain Hawkesley suffers and sulks-The late Harry Hall-The New
   Barns fracas explained-Harry Morgan-The Stewards in the sixties
   -The "Tout" and the late Lord Russell-Mr. Willes ("Argus" of
   the Mdorning Post) offends-A solemn council-Resolutions and
   amendments-" Argus the Exile "-A new tale about Hermit-William
   I'Anson as a starting-price engineer-Lord Russell's views on the
   needed age of whisky-I am taken for Mr. Gladstone at Waverley
   Station-The reason for the V's     .   .      .  Pp. 270-289



George Hodtgman       -
Admiral Rous
Mr. "Judge" Johnson.
Emigrant (Charlie Boyce Up)
Mr. John Frail, of Shrewsbury
Dr. Shorthouse  
Mr. Richard Tattereall

-    Page   33
      ,.   67
      ,    85
      ,,  103
       ,.  137
      ,.  171
      ,,  205
      . ,,  239
      . ,,  257

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         SIXTY YEARS

              ON THE TURF

                  CHAPTER I

   Early days-A useful reminder-Rogues and Rascals-My
   first " book "-" Feathers to sell "-I win a " pony "-Mr.
   Tim Kelly and " Hop, step, and a jump "-I win a " century "
   -Kelly advises London-Tattersall's Yard on Sundays-
   Caurouch for the Cesarewitch of 1847-I leave Ramsgate
   for London-Sweeps and Lotteries-I draw The Cur-
   Colonel Peel's Cambridgeshire three (1848)-Small stakes,
   but good racing-Lenient handicapping: no stakes-Derby
   and Oaks winners in 100 guineas Plate.

EVERYTHING and each career must have a beginning;
and sometimes the earlier the start, and the smaller
the scale thereof, the better the result. I am not
saying that any share of fortune my portion these
past sixty or so years was traceable to juvenile
initiation in what proved the business as well as the
pleasure of my life; but it was certainly in favour
of gaining soon the learning which comes, and
only can come, from experience that before I was
fifteen I set out one day with intent to bet on a
horse my juvenile judgment suggested held a reason-



able chance. The place of meeting was in the Isle
of Thanet, in which pleasant south-eastern corner of
England I was born and reared. Like most boys of
the age mentioned I had a fair opinion of my
sharpness, and for an attempt at displaying the
same I received on my way to the course a smart
cuff over the ears. This was the reward of warning
one I took to be a yokel against yielding to the
fascinations of the insidious game known, and sixty
years ago constantly practised at all race meetings,
as "pricking the garter." The to my mind victim
turned out to be a confederate, and instead of
thanking me he gave me a tingling smack on the
side of the head, accompanying the physical rebuke
with a verbal warning that in future perhaps I
would mind my own business; not, as I afterwards
thought, half bad advice.
  Between the adjuncts of race courses then and
now there is little or no comparison. The rough
and the roguish element at that time was the pre-
dominant characteristic.  The three card trick,
thimble-rigging, and pricking the garter were games
of petty swindling that though not recognised were
more or less tolerated, the operators even wearing a
distinctive dress of nankeens and velvet coats, while
they unblushingly carried their tables on their heads.
At popular open resorts I know there still are to be

found descendants of the tribe of thieves. But the
plucking of the pigeons has to be done in furtive
fashion, whereas in the days to which I refer the
supposed protectors of the public indulged in a
flutter themselves, theirs generally being a winning
  Shortly beyond the minor incident related I was
put to trade, in the way of assisting my uncle, who
lived at Ramsgate, in his furniture business. The
work was none too congenial, and I relieved its
tediousness by copious studies of Bell's Life, the
backing of my fancy, and the making of a little
book at the "Shipwright's Arms," situated at the
back of the pier. These mixed extra occupations,
varied with visits to London, by the steamer
Duchess of Kent, in order to back one "bad for
the book" at the lists, or invest for other reasons,
gave me considerable insight into the financial side
of the Turf, and, inevitably, a longing for permanent
residence in the metropolis, then the Mecca of the
sporting operator. How long I might have remained
at Ramsgate, or whether indeed I should ever have
deserted the rather hum-druin paths of trade, except
for one incident, I cannot say. Probably I should
have followed furniture to my grave, and made
racing the pastime, instead of the pursuit, of my
life. The incident referred to was the arrival, in

the absence of my uncle, of one Mr. Tim Kelly, a
tall, burly Irishman (as would be guessed by his
name), singularly active of body, with a mind of
sporting bent, and "keen as mustard" on getting
the better of a bargain. He came with feathers to
sell. And he did not, " in any shape or form," give
them away. No; he sold them. They were good
feathers-very good feathers indeed. But I did
not, for my uncle's interests, desire such a loading
of sand in the lower sections of the bags as I later
discovered. Mr. Kelly appeared very satisfied with
the sale, and then, his eye falling on Bell's Life, he
asked if I betted. He quickly, I think, learnt that
whatever the deficiencies of my education in the
proper manipulation of feathers for sale I was fairly
familiar with Turf matters.
  It was, I well remember, the Goodwood Stakes
day of 1847; and I thought that Hydrangea, who
had run second a fortnight earlier for a Gold Cup at
Stamford, held a winning chance. During a walk
on the pier I told Kelly this, whereupon he offered
me a "pony to three" against Lord Exeter's filly,
who won comfortably fiom Plaudit, starting at 15
to 2. I was able to tell Kelly of the result before
evening, but he refused to believe till I showed him
a telegram. "Communication by wire" was then
an uncommon because expensive process, the minimum

charge, I believe, being half a crown. That, how-
ever, is a detail. What I wish to say is that during
the afternoon Kelly and I went for a walk on the
sands, made hard and dry by the sun after the
retreat of the tide. He was, as I have said, of
agile nature, and commenced fiisking and jumping
  " Can you do hop, step, and a jump  " he
  I confessed to ignorance of the game, though I
could, in the ordinary way, both hop and jump, and
many years later thought nothing of clearing, on
one leg, four substantially-built chairs. The name
of the game explained fairly its character-first you
hopped, then stepped, and then jumped without
cessation of action. The "step" was new to me,
and Kelly beat me very easily. I thought the thing
worth practising, and next morning was hopping,
stepping, and jumping by four o'clock. On the
Saturday Kelly and I were again on the sands, and
he was soon at what evidently was his favourite
exercise. I told him I had improved, but he only
  " I should like a match with you," he said.
  " Oh, wait till I have had more practice."
  " Oh, no! I'm going away. Look here, youngster.
I owe you a pony over Hydrangea. I'll bet you


three ponies to one that I beat you now, no matter
how you've improved."
  "Right," I said, tempted by the odds, and know-
ing how I had improved by practice.
  "The best two out of three; and you go first,"
was his remark.
  Well, I just beat him, but I was sure he had not
done his best, and said so.
  " I daresay I might do a bit better," he remarked
in a casual way, and off he went again, setting me a
much harder task. But, " putting all in," I cleared
his mark by two feet; and thus had increased my
winning account to a " century." Kelly's language,
I am afraid, was not of drawing-room character,
though it might now be counted Parliamentary, for
they say funny things in the House these times.
  " Hydrangea and Hodgman," he exclaimed, " a nice
pair! I wish you both were-" well, in, personally,
undesirable quarters. " And to think," he said, as
he handed ova- a nice new hundred pound Bank of
England note-" To think, damme ! of coming down
to a hole like this and being done by a youngster
like you for a hundred! Young man, I tell you what
it is. You're wasting your time down here. Come
to London. That's the place for your sort !"
  Afterwards Kelly-I forgave the sanded feathers-
was very much my friend. By his invitation I visited

London in the following October, the 9th day, or
the Saturday before the Cesarewitch (1847). I
met him at Fisher's, in Aldersgate Street, the "Brown
Bear,"-where he stayed. Through association with
the trade, I suppose, I took stock of the furniture.
It was chiefly remarkable for the absence of house-
malidenly attentions, and if any one had happened to
call without his card he could conveniently have
written his name in the dust on the table or the
looking-glass. Next day (Sunday) Kelly took me
to Tattersall's Yard, where always, morning or
afternoon, was to be met a motley company-
swells, men about town, bookmakers, horse-dealers,
copers, and the rest of the kind.  The Rooms,
of course, were not open; but none the less, on
the eve, so to say, of important events, betting
ruled brisk.  My companion pointed out to me
Mr. Disney.
  "That man, Hodgman," he remarked, " owns the
winner of the Cesarewitch-Caurouch. I've backed
him at good prices. You'd better stand with me;
say a hundred to two."
  I took the offer, and, as is known, the son of
Irish Birdcatcher made all the running and won
comfortably by a length from Giselle. By next
season (1848) I was fairly launched in London
sporting life. But I never saw Kelly again. He


may not have been a perfect type of the "honest
dealer." Yet he had good points.
  The star of my fortunes rose with remarkable
rapidity. Everything almost in racin, that I touched
turned to, or, rather, turned in, gold. My invest-
ments may have been on a minor scale, but they
were pleasurably profitable. Sweeps and lotteries
were then as common in public-houses as cards pro-
hibiting betting are to-day. They were a powerful
attraction to the people, and, so far as my experience
goes, were honestly conducted. Whether the ex-
citement engendered by the holding of them was
unhealthy or not I leave the learned in ethics to
decide. But life without a sweep in the "brave
days" of Forty-eight would have, to most, seemed
as terribly dull an affair as one of Mr. Gilbert's
characters declared existence to be when all went
right and nothing went wrong. Of course, I speak
in this case interestedly. I was that year borne on
the full tide of success. " Big " Willis, who kept the
"King's Head," in Newgate Street, ran two sub-
stantial sweeps on the Cesarewitch. It was a heavy
betting house, and hence there was a plentiful crop
of subscribers. One sweep was for four thousand at
a shilling a bead, and the other for forty at ten
pounds a piece. I joined in both, and drew The Cur
for each. This was an extraordinary stroke of

fortune, as the son of Bran named beat thirty-one
opponents, starting second favourite to Surplice, a
great public fancy because of his Leger success.
That, however, entailed a 12 lb. penalty, and Lord
Clifden's colt ran unplaced. The Cur, to my mind,
was a very good horse in a day when good horses
abounded. Thus he, in the said Cesarewitch, beat
Dacia by a length in spite of a disadvantage of
3 st. 3 lb., Colonel Peel's filly carrying 4 st. 13 lb,
to his 8 st. 3 lb. Dacia was destined to carry off
the Cambridgeshire, for which the Colonel started
three-she, Taffrail, and Lola Montez. I was then
acquainted with the owner of Orlando,-who got
the Derby Stakes in "Running Rein's" year-and
oII the morning of the Cambridgeshire met him
outside the Subscription Rooms at Newmarket.
  " You run three, I understand, Colonel," I said.
  " Yes."
  " Do you make a declaration "
  "No. They run on their merits. But I think
Dacia is best."
  She won cleverly from her stable companion,
Taifrail, with Gaffer Green third, and Lola Montez
fourth. The public had seized on Dacia, and though
the Colonel could have won with Taffrail, and
obtained long odds (she started at 25 to 1), he
disdained such a proceeding, which is more, I must
                       17                c


say, than some, even of the aristocracy, would
have done who played the "great game" in the
" Forties." But Colonel-afterwards General-Peel
was a grand specimen of the English sporting
gentleman, and, happily, we do not look in vain
for worthy successors in this the first year of a
New Century.
  Racing in those far off days was not, in the
matter of stakes, conducted on the present lavish
scale. Owners had, in the main, to find their own
money. For their profit they were forced to look to
their dealings with the holders of books. One has
heard, and still hears, of owners who do not and
never have betted, and who yet maintain extensive
establishments. I am not surprised; nor is there
need for wonder. If a stud of fair class horses is
decently managed, it should, year in and year out,
pay its way, to say nothing of the point of profit.
I won, I venture to state, as many races as most of
my period. But a glance at my Weatherby's books
in no year discloses the netting of great sums: for
the sufficient reason that the sums, like the Spanish
Fleet on a memorable occasion, were then not in
sight. Sometimes stakes, even when won, were of
visionary  character.  The thing  would  not be
tolerated now. But fifty years ago laxity prevailed,
and if your horse was let in very nicely it was

understood the managers of the meeting were giving
  " Stakes  " said a certain Clerk of the Course on
an occasion. " Stakes, sir" in a tone of increasing
incredulity and surprise. "Why, we put yours in
to win! Didn't you back it"
  Still, I must own that even for the smaller sums
that then existed sport of the highest class prevailed.
Thus in the year under notice (1848) I remember
being at Canterbury, on August 23, and seeing
Pyrrhus the First and Miami run in two-mile heats
for Her Majesty's Plate of 100 guineas. The one
had secured, by a neck, the Derby of 1846, and the
other had captured the Oaks in the succeeding
season. This, in view of modern occurrences, was an
extraordinary incident. No longer is there a course
at Canterbury; and no longer are Derby heroes and
Oaks heroines run in two-mile heats for a hundred
guineas plate.



    Financial reverses-Flying Dutchman's Derby-A dread of
    Derbies-Layers of " safe 'uns "-Bon Mot's Liverpool Sum-
    mer Cup-A home-made guide-Profit therefrom-A run
    from Bedford Racecourse to Bletchley-The Cambridgeshire
    of 1851-A near prophecy-A Good Friday visit to New-
    market-Concerning Weathergage-A Derby thrown away-
    Objections to Plaiting-A " tip" for Stockwell-His Derby
    defeat-Davies " The Leviathan "-His heavy losses over
    Daniel O'Rourke-The turn of the tide-My first racehorse.

To attempt, in a work of this character, a strict
respect for chronology were not so much an irksome
task for the writer as one calculated to ma