POLLARD, James (1792-1867)
G. Osbaldeston Esqr. extraordinary match of 200 miles against time
London: B. Moss, 31 December 1852. Aquatint, coloured by hand, by James Pollard. Image size (including text): 12 1/2 x 17 1/4 inches. Sheet size: 17 3/8 x 21 1/4 inches.
A fine quality image, engraved by James Pollard from his own drawing.
Re-issue of a plate first published by T. Helme in 1831 and depicting the famous sportsman George Osbaldeston (1787-1866), "at the Newmarket Houghton meeting [of 1831, where] he performed an extraordinary feat. He undertook to ride two hundred miles in ten consecutive hours for a bet of a thousand guineas, the number and choice of horses being unlimited. He divided the distance to be covered into heats of four miles each, changing his horse at the conclusion of each heat, and he accomplished his task one hour and eighteen minutes within the time specified, having ridden, allowing for stoppages, at the rate of twenty-six miles an hour." (DNB). James Pollard was the youngest son of the London engraver and print-seller Robert Pollard. He began work at the age of fifteen as a painter but quickly turned to engraving as well. In the 1820s his coaching scenes became both fashionable and lucrative. "A stream of coaching paintings followed, many of which he engraved himself. From 1821 he exhibited a small number of pictures at the Royal Academy and the British Institution which brought him more patrons. Between 1830 and 1840, Pollard also painted a number of racing pictures and some of the earliest scenes of steeplechasing on purpose-made courses, many recording the prowess of the few professional and more amateur riders of the day... [In all his work Pollard took great pains over accuracy, this is particularly true of his large scale works and] it is Pollard's large racing scenes which really take off and into which one can gaze and discover a microcosm of the turf" (Charles Lane British Racing Prints p.146)
Lane British Racing Prints p.149; cf. Selway James Pollard 1792-1867 p.45 (1831 issue); Siltzer p.220.