HORSE AND HORSE
Everybody knows that alert publicity men beat drums for things like All-America and Heisman Trophy candidates. Praise and favorable statistics are sent to sportswriters and others who vote on such awards, and in a way it is like an election campaign. The latest example is Mrs. Mary F. Jones' efforts to get her Cougar II named Horse of the Year. Even though Cougar II was cautiously withdrawn from the Washington, D.C. International at Laurel last Saturday because of the soggy conditions, Mrs. Jones sent turf writers a report, with specifics on Cougar's biggest moments, the high weights he has carried, compliments he has received from outstanding horsemen and so on, accompanied by a personal note saying, "Imagine me owning a great horse like Cougar II. Because I have been so lucky I want to tell you what he has accomplished thus far in his amazing career."
Mrs. Jones' efforts so annoyed Sigmund Sommer, owner of Autobiography, another outstanding handicap horse, that he announced he would put up $100,000 for a $200,000 match race between his horse and Cougar II. We hope the match comes off. While one race is not the final answer as to which of two horses is better (and in this case neither may be Horse of the Year), ii seems better and certainly more fun than watching the outcome of a poll.
Match races are really what horse racing is all about—my horse can beat your horse—and there has been a welcome trend toward them this year. Last June at Hollywood Park, Fletcher Jones, who was killed in a plane crash last week, sent his Typecast against Leonard Lavin's Convenience in a showdown between two of the finest racing mares in the country (Convenience won), and this week at Cahokia Downs in Illinois a match race was scheduled between Jovial John and Blunt Man, spiced, as the Daily Racing Form put it, by $20,000 in side bets put up by the owners. The horses at Cahokia may be undistinguished, but the owners seem first-rate