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 Looking Back

This month in mid-atlantic thoroughbred history! For Looking Back archives click here.

A reprinted article from The New Jersey Thoroughbred by Preston Burch on “How to Pick a Yearling” was described by editor Humphrey Finney as “the best advice on selection of prospective racing material that we have ever read. The writer, for a great many years one of America’s leading trainers, has long demonstrated his ability in the selection of young racing stock.” While Burch started with, “Many good horsemen will agree with me that an article on how to pick a yearling should be prefaced with the remark, ‘It just can’t be done,’ ” he offered what he looked for – from bloodlines to conformation to movement.

  • One of Maryland’s best known all-around sportsmen, William Labrot, passed away suddenly while visiting one of his company’s creosote plants in Savannah, Ga. He was 48. The oldest son of the late Sylvester Labrot excelled as a yachtsman, fisherman and hunter. The Labrot family’s farm, Holly Beach, known for producing greats such as Tred Avon, Toolbox, and Springsteel under the helm of the senior Labrot, had seen a “livening up of horse interest” – with 15 broodmares and a half-dozen or so horses in training with Danny Shea.
    Last month, a donation to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation of 293 acres of the former Holly Beach property was approved. The waterfront property is an important staging and wintering area for migratory waterfowl as well as a nesting site for herons and bald eagles. A member of the Labrot family had owned a portion of the original 3,000-acre property through 2001.
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