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THE DERBY DAY,,
. MAY 28, 1845. , .
This morning the weather was anything but favourable to a rural excursion. The rain fell most provokingly, and the heart of many a fair damsel beat with mortification and well-founded apprehension of her
beauty and her finery being veiled from general admiration. Nevertheless, the de- partures from the metropolis were extremely numerous, and the roads leading towards Epsom, in all directions, prapented an ex f traordinary scene of excitement, while the
crush at the South Western and Croydon Railways proved that the spirit in favor of this annual festival was unabated, We cannot say that the equipages displayed many features of a fashionable character, but what was wanting in quality was evi- dently made up in quantity, and the fre- quent stoppages at the turnpike gates
* It is, perhaps, necessary to apprise some readers, that this itinerant member of the "gentle race," or "good people" (as they are scrupulously and even
reverently termed by all true believers in English power) also passes by the title of "the Lurragud- haun," and (if the author is not mistaken) in some parts of the west by that of "the Clurichaun."
+ Generally pronounced Kav'nah.
++ To have a pig in the stye, after paying the rent, is considered as strong proof of industry and good
management on the part of the Irish cottier.
¶ So called, when danced on the green turf.
proved that a few showers were not suffi- cient to damp the ardour of th'qse who had made up their minds for a day's pleasure. On'reaching tho downs we found the throng immense. The usual positions, commanding a view of the course, were occupied by thousands of vehicles, while the congrega- tion of pedestrians and equestrians did not show any great diminution as compared with former years, The stands were all respectably filled, more especially the Grand Stand, ami the usual inducements to " grub- bing" gratification found abundant favour. There was still, however, an absence of that gaiety and spirit which prevailed in former years,and the want of some source of excitement, independent of thc mere races, was obviously felt. Time hung heavily, and the absence bf gambling booths and tables left the idle without resource. For these the temptation of toxopholite feats, for which targets and bows and arrows were everywhere observable, and the stick throwing fraternity were substituted ; but, to these amusements, the attention of the humbler classes only was directed, while the superior orders were left to while away
the time in a manner most suicablo to their
opportunities, most frequently agreeably diversified by au application to their baskets of prog, with which vast numbers came provided. The weather, fortunately, be- came more favourable in the afternoon, and a pleasant and genial atmosphere rewarded those irbo bad had the courage to bill de- fiance to tbe vicissitudes of thc climate.
As the pîbrims to the Downs were
wending tbeir '«ray through Epsom- town \ and the snrronridiag avenues to the respec- tive places of tbsir destination, the crowd assembled in front of tie Spread Eagle was immense 5 font trióle every other room in the boose tras overflowing, the betting room, intended eiclnsrváy for the ac- commodation of the speculating fraternity, was neglected. Snch is the force of habit that folks were not to be inda ced to de- part from their ancient locality, and hence the canopy of heaven was preferred by the multitude to the agreeable canopy of Mr. Lumley's domicile. Early in the day Mr. Hargreave, the gentleman -who was fore- warned that he would be called upon to cover such bets as he had made upon Mr. Gully's Old England, was summoned to the " scratch," but upon producing his securities, they were not deemed satisfac- tory, and he was forced to hedge all his bets laid to Mr. Gully or his commissioners at 20 to 1. Another gentleman was called upon to hedge his bets about Old England, although he had not laid beyond his book or his means,but he refused either to stake or hedge, and struck out all his bets with Mr. Gully. Subsequently to this a great deal of betting took place in localities any thing but convenient. Idas receded in public favor, while Weatherbit advanced*, and before leaving for the Downs it was nearly even between them. Old England lost favor, and ere the ring broke up he
could not have been much under 25 to 1. The fluctuations in the other favourites were not of sufficient magnitude to render it necessary to give them in detail.
On reaching the betting-post on the downs we found the interior of the ring densely packed, while the equestrians and pedestrians without exceeded all calculation The betting here was extremely spirited, and large investments were made in hedging bets and otherwise in every direction. The
race between Idas and Weatherbit was
strongly contested, each at one period being at 7 to 2, but Idas finally leaviug off with the call. 20 to 1 could be obtained against Old England to any amount, but we must refer to our table of betting for the final
state of the odds.
Upon the ringing of the bell for saddling j a vast number of persons set off to witness
that ceremony, and as the horses arrived i and were stripped of their clothing the criticisms on their appearance and condition
were numerous and varied. Idas was ad- mitted to look in first-rate condition, and, to all appearance, well deserved the high
estimation in which he was held. Weather-
bit also looked quite up to the mark, and walked with an ease and elasticity which increased the confidence of his backers.
Old England was not less entitled to com- mendation, and Mr. Gully having declared to win with him, his intentions were re- garded with still greater favour. Of Mr. Forth's two it was acknowledged that al- though Merry Monarch was decidedly the larger, Doleful was the most like a Derby horse, and was better furnished. The Libel wasallhisfriendscould wish, as was Pantasa, while Annandale was a perfect picture of high condition and buoyant spirits, although deficient in size. Of the other horses opinions were expressed,' some favourable and some the reverse; but of Clear-the-way, "the Shillelagh" to which the Irish division had so long looked with national pride, there was but one estimate, .namely, that he was an out-and-out gag, for he not only appeared to be lame in one of his hind legs, but to be unfit to start even for a feed of oats. Jem Robinson upon his back looked anything but proud of his position, and his subsequent performances showed that who had bettcdagainsthimfullyanticipated. Cabin Boy, Black Prince, Young Eclipse, et hoc genus, did not find any very ardent admirers. Witli respect to Clear-the-way an objection was lodged with the stewards before starting for a forfeit due for the Champagne at Doncaster to Mr. Worthing- ton. Application was made to several to be responsible for this forfeit on Mr. Fer- guson's account, which was politely re- fused, and it was finally paid by Mr. Glen a few minutes before the race. All the nags, 31 in number, having been mounted, and having taken their preliminary gallops,. an attempt was made to form a line, and a most formidable phalanx was presented, Mr. Herring, tim celebrated animal painter, who was on the spot for us, declaring tlwt with few exceptions he had never seen a finer display of nags congregated at the starting post ; and this, from a gentleman who has painted the winner of the St. Leger for thirty years, is no mean authority. In effecting the start, we regret to state that considerable delay was occasioned not only by the waywardness of the high spirited animals, thus for the first time brought together, but by a singular collision be- tween the Libel and Alarm, so long the first favourite for this roce. It would seem,
:isely in the place where those
that in cantering round, Alarm, in passing close to the Libel, kicked at him, a com pliment which the Libel did not forget, ant just as the starter gave directions for the jock! to form, the Libel, who was close to Alarm suddenly reared upon his hind legs, and as if desirous of riding instead of running with his antagonist, jumped upon his back to the great dismay not only of Calloway who was on him, but of Nat, who was or Alarm. Alarm instantly made a desperat« plunge with his head down, and pulling Nat completely out of his saddle, flung hirr with great violence from his near side inte the ditch, his shoulder coming in contad
with the bank. The animal then turned
towards Sir Gilbert's plantations, and made a jump at the chain which bounds the course,
His breast came in contact with this chain with so much force, that it drew the posl from the ground, and getting entangled, ht was cast, the chain forming a bandage round his body and hind legs. From thu he had great difficulty in extricating himself kicking and plunging most violently. Ht at last, however, got free, just as-Nat hat again approached him, and galloped of across the course " kicking his best." Ht pursued his headlong career towards tht back of the winning post, where he wa; recognised by those who had glasses. Ot reaching the bottom of the hill, he wa: turned, and was finally stopped before ht reached the carriages, and led back to Sit Gilbert's training stables, where he was met by those who came in pursuit, and was again mounted by his jock, although any thing but improved by this unluckj movement. As we have hereafter given ar account of the start and the vicissitudes ol the race in its progress, we shall not here refer further to it, only remarking, that the position of Oíd England being placed third, anything but supported the assertion of Mr. Stebbing and his friends, that Weatherbit was 211b better, although we must fain admit, from the condition of Weatherbit after the race, there were those who did not hesitate to say he did not run in his anticipated form and as his previous trials warranted his owner in expecting.
Previous to the start, which had been thus so long protracted, thc anxiety of the multitude was most intense, and the result to those who had backed the favourites was anything but satisfactory ; while to " the fieldsmen" it was quite in accordance with their hopes, although anything but pleasing to those who had invested their capital against " Forth's lot," or the Merry Monarch in particular; and just before the start, a noble lord laid 1,500 to 100 against the lot. The winner was not even mentioned, that we heard in,'the course of the day, and indeed we have .reason to know, that persous who had backed him, and who were anxious to " get out" were reluctantly forced to stand to be " shot at," with the agreeable consolation of finding that they were unexpected winners to a very large amount. We have no doubt that Mr. Forth intended to win with Dole- ful, and instructions to that effect were given to the jocks, the better one of the two being placed on Doleful, while F. Bell, usually employed only to ride trials, was placed on the winner. We are inclined to think that Doleful was made too much use
j of in the eariy part of the race, and, finding j his chance was out, Bell called upon his brother, who was waiting for him, to go forward, as he was "sure to do it;'" and he did go forward, and did do it in a man- ner most acceptible to his master as well as acceptible to the stable. The Merry Monarch is in the Leger, and it might have been desirable to have reserved his powers for that important occasion. As it is, he has added another laurel to the training reputation of Mr. Forth, who received the hearty congratulations of his friends. At the termination of the grand struggle the palpitating hearts of thousands were set at rest. The winners looked cheerful, and the losers sought consolation in anticipations of the future, or in imbibing those inspiring draughts which have sometime* the effect of restoring equanimity to " minds dis- eased." The subsequent races of the day did not prove very attractive to the " gentlemen sportsmen' on the field, how- ever gratifying they might be to those who only came to enjoy pleasure, independent of speculation. As the evening advanced ? the throng gradually broke up, and the casualties and eccentricities of the roads on
" the Derby day" were illustrated by the customary incidents, in the course of which temper easily got the better of discretion, and broken panels, lamed horses, and a few black eyes, afforded ample opportuni- ties for comment and observation to the thousands who lined the roads from Ken- nington Gate to Tooting, and who often enjoyed a hearty laugh at a very trifling expense, to the no small annoyance of those whose happiness had not been with- out alloy and whose reflections, in all pro- bability, will be accompanied by future re- gret. Our limits will not permit us to draw further upon the ample sources of remark which were presented to us, and we shall at once proceed to describe.
The DERBY STAKES of 80 sovs. each, h ft, for
three year olds; colts 8st 71b, fillies Sst 21b; the second to receive 100 sovs. cud the winner to pay 100 towards the police regulations of the course ; last milo and a half ; 138 subs.
Mr. Gratwicke's the Merry Monarch, by Slane
-Margravine.F. Bell 1 Mr. A. Johnstone's Annandale, by Touch-
stone.Marson 2 Mr. Gully's Old England, by Mulatto... .Day 3 Mr. Mostyn's Pantasa, by Piocoroon.. Marlow Í Lord Stadbroke's Idas, by Liverpool .... (G. 0
Edwards) ..". 0 Mr. Gully's Weatherbit, by Sheet Anchor,
(J. Day, jttnr.). 0 Mr. A. W. Hill's The Libel, by Pantaloon,
(Colloway).. ... 0 Mr. Greville's Alarm, by Venison..Nat 0 Mr. Gratwicke's Doleful, by Slane... .H.Bell 0 Lord Chesterfield's rom, by Emilias. .Butler 0 Mr. Ford's Fuzbos, by Economist.... ....Sly 0 Col Cradook'sJinglepot, by Physician.. (Tem-
pleman) .1 .. 0 Duke of Richmond's The Laird o' Cockpen,
hy Gkncns.. ¿.Whitehouse 0 Mr. Wreford's Worthless, by Camel. .Howlett 0 Mr. St Paul's Mentor, by Sheet Anohor. .Lye 0 Col reel's b o by Slauo out of Cobweb, (E.
Edwards). 0 Mr. Waller's Columbus,by Liverpool.. (Wake-
field. 0 Lord Exeter's Wood Pigeon, by Velocipede
(Boyeo)... £ Mr. Worley'sJohnDavis, hyEmilius.. Crouch 0 Mr. A. W. Hill's Salopian, by Bay Middleton,
(Denman). ..... i . 0 Col Anson's Hedger, by Sheet Anchor,
Lord Glasgow's b c by Bay. Middleton ont of ..
Miss Whip.,,Holmes ' 0, Lord Vernlam's b o by Liverpool out of
Coramba,,,.,W.Cotton 0 Sir G. Heathcote'* Gwalior, by Samarcand
(Cbapplo),. 0 Mr. T. Theobald's Desperation, by Buinous,
(Bartholomew). 0 Mr. Lintott's Cabin Boy, by Sheet Anchor,
(Buckle). 0 Mr. Tating/s Adonis, by Gladiator. .Hornsby 0 Mr. Ferguson's Clear-the-way, by Harkaway
(Robinson).'. 0 Mr. Coleman's Young Eclipse, by Elis, (W»
Coleman). 0 Mr. Myttou's The Black Princ'e.byTouchstone ,
(Copeland). 0 * Mr. Mack'sLittle Jack, by Camel outof Chance
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