give the other a hundred yards

English translation: give an advantage of 100 yards

GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
English term or phrase:give the other a hundred yards
Selected answer:give an advantage of 100 yards
Entered by: Clauwolf

12:11 Dec 8, 2019
English language (monolingual) [PRO]
General / Conversation / Greetings / Letters / Horse racing
English term or phrase: give the other a hundred yards
From Silver Blaze, Arthur Conan Doyle:

"Is it a fact that at the weights Bayard could give the other a hundred yards in five furlongs, and that the stable have put their money on him?"

Two explanations directly contradict each other as far as which horse is being handicapped:

http://sherlockholmes.stanford.edu/2007/notes2_1.html
https://forum.wordreference.com/threads/at-the-weights-bayar...

Is there anybody familiar with horse racing who is CERTAIN about which explanation is the correct one?
Lincoln Hui
Hong Kong
Local time: 22:51
give an advantage of 100 yards
Explanation:
:) Bayard would win even using the weight to compensate for being faster than the other horse, and the stable workers are betting on it...
Somebody is asking to be sure
Selected response from:

Clauwolf
Local time: 11:51
Grading comment
Selected automatically based on peer agreement.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



SUMMARY OF ALL EXPLANATIONS PROVIDED
3 +3give an advantage of 100 yards
Clauwolf
4In a five-furlong race, Bayard would win even if the other horse started 100 yards ahead.
airmailrpl
4 -1yes, contradictory readings
Yvonne Gallagher
Summary of reference entries provided
Straight from the horse's mouth
Daryo
From The Baker Street Journal
Alison MacG

Discussion entries: 7





  

Answers


1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +3
give an advantage of 100 yards


Explanation:
:) Bayard would win even using the weight to compensate for being faster than the other horse, and the stable workers are betting on it...
Somebody is asking to be sure

Clauwolf
Local time: 11:51
Native speaker of: Native in PortuguesePortuguese
PRO pts in category: 16
Grading comment
Selected automatically based on peer agreement.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Tony M
48 mins
  -> thanks

agree  Charlotte Fleming
2 hrs
  -> thanks

disagree  Yvonne Gallagher: Sorry but have to disagree. Like you I thought at first that Bayard was the best horse but when you read more of the context he is NOT and is also NOT the horse handicapped//read the story. Bayard does NOT win
3 hrs
  -> Bayard wins:) It's a "stable information", no contradiction

agree  B D Finch: Yes, the man is asking the stable boy for a tip on the race and suggesting that the stable has put its money on Bayard of the two horses they have in the race. "At the weights", means with the weight allocated to each of the two horses.
1 day 4 hrs
  -> thanks

agree  Daryo: EXACTLY that - also confirmed by taking the trouble to read the story!
1 day 7 hrs
  -> thanks
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): -1
yes, contradictory readings


Explanation:
OK I didn't see the line in the 1st link before.

"'Is it a fact that at the weights Bayard could give the other a hundred yards in five furlongs...?'" (4)
... The man seems to be asking if the King's Pyland stablehands themselves believe that Bayard could lose to the favorite, Silver Blaze, by a hundred yards in five furlongs even though the latter's handicap weight is so much greater.

Some more context was needed to see the error here. It seems to me that Conan Doyle is misunderstanding how weights work or racing terminology.

If Silver Blaze is the favourite, as the stanger says here, and as the odds imply (5 to 4 on) then that is the horse that will be more heavily handicapped/have more weight

Normally the phrase "Bayard could give the other a hundred yards in five furlongs...." implies that Bayard is the better horse and can give the other horse a headstart but still will WIN (not lose) and that's why the stable is backing him.

However, it seems the way it is being intended here is

Is it true that if Silver Blaze is wearing weights (handicapped), Bayard will be one hundred yards ahead of him after he has run five furlongs or 1100 yards? (and thus be the winner)

It is rather odd.

We know from the ending that Silver Blaze in disguise wins the race but maybe is nort handicapped in the same way?
,
https://etc.usf.edu/lit2go/40/the-memoirs-of-sherlock-holmes...
"You’ve two horses in for the Wessex Cup—Silver Blaze and Bayard. Let me have the straight tip and you won’t be a loser. Is it a fact that at the weights Bayard could give the other a hundred yards in five furlongs, and that the stable have put their money on him?’..."

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 4 hrs (2019-12-08 17:08:03 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

As I said, on first reading I'd have agreed with the WordRef answers that Bayard is the better horse but it's clear from looking at context that Silver Blaze will be the one handicapped.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 5 hrs (2019-12-08 17:15:21 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

More relevent context
Silver Blaze," ...holds as brilliant a record as his famous ancestor. ..and has brought in turn each of the prizes of the turf to Colonel Ross, ...Up to the time of the catastrophe he was the first favourite for the Wessex Cup, the betting being three to one on him. He has always, however, been a prime favourite with the racing public, and has never yet disappointed them, so that even at those odds enormous sums of money have been laid upon him.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 6 hrs (2019-12-08 18:44:15 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Yes, it's obvious the asker (Simpson) wants Silver Blaze to lose in this line and must have heard a rumour (or been told) that the trainer (Straker) intended to nobble the horse himself (cut it), or have someone else do it, which was why the stable boy was drugged

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 6 hrs (2019-12-08 18:48:58 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

the odds on Bayard would have been MUCH better (so much more to win), and certainly better than 5 to 4 on, as it was not the favourite.

Yvonne Gallagher
Ireland
Local time: 14:51
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 496
Notes to answerer
Asker: It's also stated, however, that the person saying this line has registered a large bet against Silver Blaze. He had a interest in Silver Blaze losing, and may have believed that there were reasons Silver Blaze would lose.


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Daryo: there is nothing "contradictory" if you simply take your information "à la source" - get hold of the full text of this story - and interpret it correctly / apply basics of game theory (valid even if it wasn't called that in Conan Doyle's time)
1 day 3 hrs
  -> I DID READ THE STORY. Where do you think I got the context from I posted??? Why don't you read it instead of talking rubbish or is that beyond your capabilities?
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 day 1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
In a five-furlong race, Bayard would win even if the other horse started 100 yards ahead.


Explanation:
give the other a hundred yards => In a five-furlong race, Bayard would win even if the other horse started 100 yards ahead.

https://forum.wordreference.com/threads/at-the-weights-bayar...

airmailrpl
Brazil
Local time: 11:51
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in PortuguesePortuguese
PRO pts in category: 88

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Yvonne Gallagher: No, read the full story. Bayard is the horse getting a headstart//Asker already gave that link which contradicts other link he gave
8 hrs
  -> IYO ??

agree  Daryo: that is exactly the intended meaning - recognising that it's ONLY A SUPPOSITION on which the question was based shouldn't require some super-strength advanced reading skills.
9 hrs
  -> thank you
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




Reference comments


1 day 10 hrs peer agreement (net): -1
Reference: Straight from the horse's mouth

Reference information:
...
“‘Good-evening,’ said he, looking through the window. ‘I wanted to have a word with you.’ The girl has sworn that as he spoke she noticed the corner of the little paper packet protruding from his closed hand.
“‘What business have you here?’ asked the lad.
“‘It’s business that may put something into your pocket,’ said the other. ‘You’ve two horses in for the Wessex Cup—Silver Blaze and Bayard. Let me have the straight tip and you won’t be a loser. Is it a fact that at the weights Bayard could give the other a hundred yards in five furlongs, and that the stable have put their money on him?’
“‘So, you’re one of those damned touts!’ cried the lad. ‘I’ll show you how we serve them in King’s Pyland.’ He sprang up and rushed across the stable to unloose the dog.
...
the question:

"Is it a fact that at the weights Bayard could give the other a hundred yards in five furlongs, and that the stable have put their money on him?"

is asked by someone who appeared in the middle of the night out of nowhere and is trying to get insider information from the stable boy keeping watch over the two racing horses.

This Bayard horse is probably less well know than Silver Blaze, and if it was true that it's a better racing horse than the obvious favorite, betting on Bayard would be very profitable (thus the offer of money for the insider tip).

So the way the question was asked implies that this horse Bayard is supposed to be far better than the favorite Silver Blaze.

No ambiguity of any kind about that whatsoever.

BTW in "the stable have put their money on him", the "stable" is not a reference to the stable boys betting, but to the whole operation / the business that owns / trains the horse.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 day 10 hrs (2019-12-09 22:45:22 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

also

"the stable have put their money on him"

could mean ONLY that "him" / Bayard is supposed to be the better racing horse - no one sane would bet on an expected loser.

Again, where is the ambiguity?

Daryo
United Kingdom
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in SerbianSerbian, Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this reference comment (and responses from the reference poster)
disagree  Yvonne Gallagher: totally misunderstood what is actually happening.
16 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 day 5 hrs
Reference: From The Baker Street Journal

Reference information:
Simpson, seeking on this occasion a tip concerning the two horses Colonel Ross had entered in the Wessex "Cup" (sic), posed the following question to young Ned Hunter, the stableboy on watch that evening: "Is it a fact that at the weights Bayard could give the other a hundred yards in five furlongs, and that the stable have put their money on him?"
Note carefully the italicized words. The inference is clear: Bayard was getting weight from Silver Blaze, enough to offer the possibility that he (Bayard) could defeat his more illustrious stable-mate at the mile and five furlongs to be run, even after giving Silver Blaze a head start of a hundred yards in five furlongs. If Simpson had omitted these three key words, the inference would have been that Bayard was far superior to Silver Blaze at equal weights, an impossibility according to the adventure. Weight, however, has long been known as "the great equalizer" in turf circles, and only by receiving a substantial reduction in the poundage he had to carry could Bayard have hoped to be competitive with "the most remarkable horse in England”.
https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=23crAQAAIAAJ&q="silver b...


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2 days 2 hrs (2019-12-10 14:45:58 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Bayard was getting weight from Silver Blaze

The Language of Horse Racing By Gerald Hammond

Give - A horse gives weight to another when it carries more weight: 'Desert Orchid ... gave two stone and an eight length beating to Delius' (Sporting Life 5 June 1990).
https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=bc0GDAAAQBAJ&pg=PT98&lpg...

Alison MacG
United Kingdom
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this reference comment (and responses from the reference poster)
disagree  Yvonne Gallagher: Bayard is NOT giving Silver Blaze a headstart! It's the other way round. SB is carrying the weights as the favourite so Bayard can get the headstart. Read the full story//of course I did! Your contention is contradictory. I never said B is favourite!
4 hrs
  -> Hello Yvonne. Did you actually read the text of my link? The author is attempting to clarify the meaning of this passage and to explain how and why it might be misunderstood. Nowhere is it stated that Bayard is the favourite.
agree  Daryo: the question asked was based on the ***supposition*** that "Bayard is so good that it should be the one giving Silver Blaze a headstart" / Making the difference between a hypothetical situation and the reality shouldn't be so complicated ..
4 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)



Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.

You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs (or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.

KudoZ™ translation help

The KudoZ network provides a framework for translators and others to assist each other with translations or explanations of terms and short phrases.


See also:

Your current localization setting

English

Select a language

Term search
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search