Monday, 20 March 2017
"Look deep into nature and then you will understand everything better."
Trotting over to the start of the canter
It was spitting with rain when I was feeding this morning just after four o’clock, and I think showers are forecast on and off all day. It certainly is not cold though and even if it was, I have had no chance of feeling it as it has been a very hectic morning already. What staff are in are working very well and Barry, my assistant, is unbelievable, a great example to anybody. Horses have been cantering on Southfields Round most of the morning and we have had one through the stalls again. He will be going through every day this week, and next, as you cannot have a stalls test for two weeks after you have been withdrawn.
Cantering at first lot
Indian Red is the horse I am talking about above, when he shook the hood off and reared in the stalls. It is very disappointing that this happened as I don’t think the hood was tucked in well enough and once it had come off, he preceded to stand on it. He has been very good every day since at home and as I say, he will be drilled until perfect. It is just so frustrating.
Tenpence and her Mount Nelson colt foal
We had another foal at the weekend, when Tenpence produced a Mount Nelson bay colt at around seven o’clock Saturday night. This makes it in the colts favour this year. Both mother and son are doing well. You will see from the photos today that our new foster mother, Paula, is bonding well with the foal and we now have two foster mothers helping us out this year. It is amazing how nature behaves and it is lovely to see the foals taking to their new mothers. At present we have got one mare overdue, and then there is a bit of a break of a few weeks until the next batch come into the foaling boxes.
Astromancer with her Equiano filly Brushing with her Casamento colt
There are always idiots in this game and at least the one who gate-crashed the Cheltenham winning circle has owned up and told us he has done it many times before. He might just do it for a joke, and in some ways I suppose it is, but I wonder what would have happened if he had put his hand on the horse with a certain drug that had tested positive. What would have happened then? It is very hard to stop these infiltrators and it’s amazing to me that the authorities have not picked him up before. I know I am giving him airtime, but the least publicity this sort of thing gets, the better.
As promised here are the final standings for the Cheltenham Festival last week. As you will see, I was the winner once again. Although Richard got off to a good start, and jumped the fence in the lead on the first day, it soon became clear that my skills were coming to the fore. Even though neither of us tipped a winner on the last day, I still managed to keep my head in front. All I can say is better luck next time Richard.
MHT: minus £60
Richard: minus £155
Paula, the foster mother, with her Casamento colt
Our best wishes go to Nicky Mackay who broke his leg very badly at Chelmsford last week in a freak accident and has had to have a major operation. It will take a long time for him to recover and let’s hope he can come back, but this type of injury can be career threatening. We mustn’t forget George Baker, who is now back in this country after his accident in Switzerland. We wish them both well.