The John Magnier article is a must read ...

The wind is blowing a gale

Thursday, 18 January 2018

"Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face."

Victor Hugo.

Indian Red on Hamilton Hill ...

... and making his way back to the yard

The gales that were forecast certainly arrived last night and it was still blowing very hard at first lot. As the morning has progressed the winds have slightly died down, but there are a lot of branches and one reasonably large tree down on the heath. Also a lot of rails have moved on the polytracks but the heathmen were soon on the case and cleared everything up in double quick time. We have had a couple of non-runners this morning which always frustrates me as you know, but the ones in have been working steadfastly and all the horses has been cantering on the polytracks Racecourse Side.

     08_Blaze     06_Breeze
(L) Astroblaze and (R) Astrobreeze ..

.. and walking home

We were delighted with Topapinion’s win yesterday at Lingfield, where, although running very green, he won with a bit in hand and I think will develop into a very useful horse. He was a very late foal so he is not really three until the end of April and has plenty of developing to do yet. His sire, So You Think, was bred by one of our very good friends Mike in New Zealand and after a successful Australian campaign, he came over to stand at Coolmore which gave us the opportunity to use him. In this instance there are no great nicks and figures, but it just goes to show that if you love the stallion, the breeding can work. Congratulations must go to David and all the stud staff who produce all these horses for us. They are very much part of a team - both the training yard and the stud are all in it together.

Topalova cantering

Exercise over

There was an incident yesterday after the race at Lingfield which really annoyed me. I think it is one that needs pointing out as there have been very high profile cases against trainers in recent months. The BHA seems to want to hold trainers responsible for everything that happens to their horses and quite rightly so in the training yards with the veterinary work, that is down to the trainer. However, an employee of Lingfield was giving my winner a bucket of water to drink after the race, without myself or my staff’s knowledge as he was being led round the winning enclosure. This person was shoving a bucket of water under his nose, and he did take a couple of mouthfuls before I admonished him. He looked completely bewildered when I told him, in no uncertain terms, not to do it and that only my staff were responsible for things like that. The course Vet was stood two yards away and she didn’t say a word either.

Now, if there had been anything in the bucket that had got into my horses system, he would fail a dope test which was completely out of my control. This is just a prime example of incompetence by the racecourse and the BHA Veterinary Advisory Group. I will be bringing this up with the National Trainers Federation and I am sure something will be done in future, but it is quite impossible for the trainers to be in full control of what goes on on the racecourses premises. In fact if I hadn’t of been there, I would never have known and the horse would have drunk a good half bucket of whatever. I am sure it was just water, but it might not have been.