OUR MEMORIES
St Leger 1941-12-06_3 A Ostroumoff A LUXURIOUS TIME


The last St Leger before the Japanese occupation

 

 

INTRODUCTION

 

The St Leger Stakes (spelt without a full stop in UK English) is a Group 1 flat horse race in Great Britain.

It has been open to three-year-old thoroughbred colts and fillies.

It is run at Doncaster over a distance of 1mile 6 furlongs and 132 yards (2,937 meters).

Nowadays, it is scheduled to take place in September each year.

 

The event was devised by Anthony St Leger, an army officer and politician who lived near Doncaster.

1776-09-24 inaugurated, the St Leger is the oldest of Britain’s five Classics.

It is the last of the five to be run each year, and its distance is longer than any of the other four.

 

The St Leger is the final leg of the English Triple Crown, which begins with the 2,000 Guineas and continues with the Derby.

 

1915, Hong Kong still had no racing record of any event related to the local St Leger.

 

 

BACKGROUND

 

The Eleventh Extra Meeting was fixed for November 22, had been postponed to the Black Week-end, Saturday,

December 6 because of a strike by 374 mafoos. It was the Club’s last meeting for five years.

But according to page 159 of《POW MAH》written by Henry Ching, the cause of a two times postponement was due to the rain.

 

Nothing about the strike was mentioned which should be the more reasonable cause due to the drying weather in November and December.

 

The race meeting held 19 days before the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong.

The last race Meeting of Hong Kong’s first century was held in an atmosphere of some tension and unstability.

The weather was good, and thousands of punters attended.

Mr H J A Hearne, who had three firsts and one third.

 

 

HIGHLIGHTS

 

A LUXURIOUS TIME wins Flemington St Leger with ease.

Honours in the main event,however, went to Mr A Ostroumoff.

He just arrived and made his debut at the Valley from Tianjin.

Ostroumoff rode a finely judged race on Mr Li Po Chun’s A LUXURIOUS TIME to win the Flemington St Leger by 6 lengths.

The runner-up was Mr Li Lan-san’s DISTANT VIEW, the favourite.

Mr Lan invited Mr Pih to resume riding for this race after the recovery of his illness.

The second favourite, NATIONAL COURAGE (Mr H S Chang), failed to place.

 

The Main Event

The Flemington St Leger for Australian ponies over a distance of one mile and three quarters.

It was robbed of some of its interest due to the fact that only five ponies accepted.

The punters made DISTANT VIEW, the favourite due to the jockey Mr Pih.

NATIONAL COURAGE was second in demand, carrying 2,661 win tickets, while A LUXURIOUS TIME was third favourite.

 

The field was sent off to a good start and DISTANT VIEW (Mr Pih) went out into the lead.

He was followed by GAY FOX (Mr Hearne), A LUXURIOUS TIME (Mr Ostroumoff ),

MOUNTAIN VIEW (Mr Needa) and NATIONAL COURAGE (Mr Chang) kept close behind.

 

At the Half-Mile Post the position was unchanged, but with a bit slow pacing.

Near the Rock, NATIONAL COURAGE moved to fourth place.

Apart from that, the first three positions unaltered.

It was in this order that the field passed the Stands for the first time.

 

Passing the Football Stands for the second time, MOUNTAIN VIEW went up to occupy fourth position again.

 

At the Rock again, A LUXURIOUS TIME was running with an easy stride and a win seemed likely.

Though at this stage DISTANT VIEW was still some three lengths in front.

GAY FOX in second place was closely followed.

 

There was no change in positions when the field entered the home straight.

But at the Distance Post A LUXURIOUS TIME was hard ridden by Mr Ostroumoff.

The pony responded gamely with a fne burst to pass first GAY FOX.

Then DISTANT VIEW, NATIONAL COURAGE and MOUNTAIN VIEW had by now faded completely out of the picture.

 

A LUXURIOUS TIME was so full of fight at the finish that it won with six lengths to spare.

DISTANT VIEW was three lengths in front of GAY FOX.

 

Official result:

1. A LUXURIOUS TIME (Ostroumoff ) Mr Li Po Chun

2. DISTANT VIEW (H C Pih ) Lan

3. GAY FOX (H J A Hearne ) Mrs Eu Tong Sen

 

Time:

26; 52.1; 1.19.2; 1.47; 2.15; 2.42.3; 3.09.3

 

 

SUMMARY

 

For the next racing held in Hong Kong, it was under the occupation of the Japanese.

 

1956

The Hong Kong St. Leger was run for the last time.

That year, St. Leger drew only four entries and was won easily by Mr R. Reiertsen’s well-backed NORSE KING (Mr Ostroumoff) in 3.18.2.

The difference could be compared with the record 3.09.3 set up by Mr Li Po-chun’s A LUXURIOUS TIME in 1941-12-06_3.

 

 

REFERENCE

 

Li Po-chun ( 1886 – 1963 ) , the youngest son of Hong Kong philanthropist Li Sing.

His title should not be a Miss, as being addressed by many English books and newspaper.

 

 

RELATED LINK

 

Hong Kong Horse Racing History in Brief – 《RacingMemories.HK》

 

 

Acknowledgment to HKJC Racing Registry for offering relevant records.

 

 

 


 

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