SHADOW KING: He was the bridesmaid of the top event!

MELBOURNE CUP, 1930. FIRST PAST THE POST WAS THE MIGHTY PHAP LAP WITH SHADOW KING RUNNING THIRD. Bottom: Another angle of shot.

“THE FOLKLORE OF HORSE RACING CHIEFLY REVOLVED AROUND THE WINNER AND FAIRLY TALE SUCCESSES, SAID RACING WRITER, DARREN ELIAS IN THE PORFILE OF SHADOW KING. THE CHAMP WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN.

DARREN ELIAS        Adapted by FRANK MORRIS

“Some of the more interesting stories, however, go on to concern the perennial losers, the ‘could-have-beens’”.

Shadow King was a bay colt by Comedy King, a Melbourne Cup winning stallion, out of the mare Berylium.

There was one problem with his name, Shadow King. “He proved to be a ‘shadow’ by nature” said Elias.

In the time of great racing and great horses, Shadow King stands out as one of the “unluckiest horses ever” to race in the Cup.

His starts in the Melbourne Cup make Shadow King far from forgotten. He raced in the Cup six times for 2 seconds, 2 thirds, fourth and sixth.

It all started in 1929.

THE MIGHTY PHAR LAP

The flashy Kiwi, Nightmarch, came with a withering run in the final 400 metres to win the Melbourne Cup by three lengths. The mighty Phar Lap ran poorly throughout the race finishing third. Shadow King came in sixth.

In the 1930 Shadow King ran third, resoundingly beaten by the then legendary Phar Lap, unbeatable at the time. In 1931 he was unlucky not to beat White Nose. Hampered several times in the run Shadow King was charging to the finish line, but he was too late.

There was only one horse that was compared to Phar Lap – Peter Pan.

In 1932, Shadow King met the awesome Peter Pan, a rising star. A striking, loose-limbed colt “with plenty of pace to develop” Peter Pan put in an amazing performance in the two-miler that he nearly fell 800m from home.  The “Shadow”— that was his nom de plume – weaved his way through the field to miss at the finish.

A TORRID RUN

Probably his most hapless run came in the 1933. In this Shadow King was only beaten by inches by the great 3 year old, Hall Mark. After a torrid run, Shadow King had again struck interference at the top of straight and was forced to come wide. He was actually in front past the winning post.

The reason Shadow King did not run in 1934 was because of the bog track. The great Peter Pan, the delight of the near-record breaking crowd, won the race.

In was not until 1935 did an ageing Shadow King contest the Cup. He finished a creditable fourth to Marabou.

Shadow King had the honour of leading the field out that day in recognition of his efforts.

AS A POLICE HORSE

A funny thing did happen. Peter Pan, who was unplaced in the Cup, played second fiddle to the ‘old stager’. Shadow King retired with his name firmly etched in Cup lore. By today’s standards his Cup pacing’s would have him more than $2 million.

“Folklore remembers that as being the end in the Shadow King story,” said Darren Elias. “But there is another facet to his remarkable tale”. Elias continues: “Despite the fact that he never to race again, Shadow King attended several further Melbourne Cups as a police horse.

In 1943 the 17-year-old Shadow King was in a palsy state. The “Shadow” was put-down not far from where he was standing.

Below: Shadow King, in all its glory, just before running third to Phar Lap in the 1930 Melbourne Cup.
Source: From Grand Years 10 years ago; Historic Australia, Spring, 1997.


Elly Gross (ABOVE) was born in Hungary in 1929. Elly began encountering antisemitism at an early age. And she was brought into a time of terror by the Nazis as they tightened their grip on Europe.

This is the true story – the truth of Elly Cross in a series of miracles that take her from the daily horrors of world she is in – Hungary.

The miracles did come … coming in May.


Special Mention: Television brought to book after it fails due to lack of technology!

FIRST MAN OF AUSTRALIA TELEVISION. HE OPENED THE SERVICE IN 1957.

AFTER SUCCESSFULLY TRANSMITTING A 180-PICTURE, THE SERVER CLOSED BECAUSE OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR.

FRANK MORRIS

The first book on television could be bought in Australia in 1926. It was called Television: Seeing by Wire or Wireless, by A. Dinsale. It was publicised as the first publication to appear on the subject.

The first book published in Australia to coincide with the launch of regular television transmission in September, 1956, was How Television Works: A Simple Guide by adman Phil MacMahon.MacMahon described television as a delightful toy – a toy which is bringing us a “fascinating new way of living”.

From the early 1920s the daily press, through its overseas cable hook-up, was giving “some prominence” to “the subject of television” much to the chagrin of the fledgling broadcasting industry.

In 1927 the Australian magazine, Wireless Weekly, warned that the public, could be “prone to accept attractive statements … about having televisors or “looking-in” attachments wired to their receivers”.

TELEVISOIN TERROR

The magazine pointed out that there had been two years of speculation about the early advent of television “or radio vision”, but “we have not yet been shown any demonstration of it, nor has any practical application of it to the ordinary user been given in any part of the world.”

It was only a matter of time, in fact, two years, when the “television-terror” was demonstrated on home turf.

In January, 1929, Melbourne’s first commercial radio station, 3UZ, conducted the first public demonstration of TV in its studios, using the mechanical scanning system.

Although it was still experimental, the first regular television transmission, using the 30-line Baird system, began from a building in Wickham Terrace, Brisbane, in 1934. The project, which was successfully transmitting a 180-line picture, was closed down by the Federal Government on the outbreak of the Second World War in 1938.

Below: A group of kids around the television at the Royal Easter Show in 1957.
SOURCE: Television Brought to Book was previously published in Grand Years in 2012 and syndicated to various other media.


The Dog: Things the animal will do that you won’t know about

THE THREE DOGS STRAINED AT THEIR LEASHES.

FRANK MORRIS

Taurus seems to have an acute sense of smell. Generally, if this is the case with your dog, you can bet the animal has detected a group of dogs being taken for a walk a kilometre away.

But that’s not all. The dog was able to meet the animals – a Fox terrier and an Alsatian -- who wanted to get together with the Taurus. Your dog could smell them from a distance.

The three dogs strained at their leashes. And you could see why the owner was becoming a tad nervous. When I moved my dog to the side of the street, I noticed that they had gone back to her.

But Taurus is a funny hound to have around the place. Taurus, no matter what animal there is ahead, the dog frequently proves to be more than a match for any animal at bay.

CONSTANT COMPANION

If your dog is a well-trained veteran, the animal could be cleverer than they realised.

Your Taurus is a useful animal, ever faithful to its owner. The dog is a constant companion to its master. Taurus is quick at its commands, and always prompted to execute them.

The dog is a watchful guardian and will not suffer fools and strangers gladly; the Taurus will impede any intruder. The dog never fails to protect its charges.

When the dog take its stand, the Taurus threatens every known delinquent who wants to get involved.

APRIL 20 TO MAY 20

SOURCE: Frank Morris, after observing many dogs.


THE QUEEN: Meeting 11 presidents of the United States!

The Queen, in her diamond tiara and sash, laughs at one of President Ford’s impromptu stories. The event happened when President Nixon resigned.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 18 April 19

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