Put them through the stalls and they will be ready to run ....

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The wind chill has made it cold

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

"Dance is the hidden language of the soul."

Martha Graham.

Walking to the start of the Cambridge Road polytrack

There is a much stronger wind this morning so consequently the wind chill factor has leapt up enormously. I have had a visitor with me form Saudi Arabia for the last few days and needless to say, he was feeling the cold a lot more than me. He tells me it is 45 degrees at home, which is a long way from our two this morning. I have been galloping on the Cambridge Road polytrack and using the Southfield Round for most of this morning’s exercise. We had Gabriele coming in for second lot, which is always a great help, and one or two more staff have appeared. There is even a feeder on the horizon, but I won’t count my chickens just yet.

(L-R) Budgie, Four Fifty Three and Hold Firm

It was a disappointing evening at Wolverhampton last night, where Bracken Brae could only manage to finish fourth. I don’t quite know what happened, but it was a pretty slow run race once again and that may have been the reason. We will be having a test or two just to show there is nothing untoward. 

Lost The Moon leading on Southfield Round

I see the BHA has said it plans to add £8 million next year in the lower to middle tiers of the sport. This is well overdue but I don’t think it will make much of an impact as there are so many races in that division. I don’t think they actually get it, the owners need to start getting some sort of proper return for their investment. I just hope we get the money as I read that a legal challenge to the new Levy looks very likely. Lord Lipsey says “I am sure there will be challenges and this is only the start of the story”. There must be a lot more going on behind the scenes that we don’t know about. My opinion of the whole thing is that racing, and betting, must work together in harmony, it can’t be one way traffic. We will definitely help them, if they help us, but for the last 50 years it has only been going their way. It has now got to change.


We went on the Watered Gallop this morning

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

"Feelings are much like waves, we can't stop them from coming but we can choose which one to surf."

Jonatan Mårtensson.

Indian Red leading Gee Sixty Six

We had a good ground frost this morning and it is much colder with a slight breeze. The forecast is for it to continue like this and a few snow showers, especially on the east coast. I am quite pleased I haven’t got runners at Yarmouth today as the wind will be coming off the North Sea and it will be perishing. I had a few workers on the Watered Gallop first thing, which, in fact, was riding on the slow side. Second and third lot have been back on the polytracks and with another new member of staff, we are starting to get up to full strength, although we did have one non-runner, and we still need a new a feeder / head lad.

Desert River and Budgie

We have one runner tonight at Wolverhampton where we run Bracken Brae in the two mile amateur rider’s race. We have got the top man on board in Simon Walker and are very hopeful of her keeping her good run going. She may be the only runner this week, although we have her brother, Gee Sixty Six, entered at Doncaster on Saturday which we will look at and decide nearer the time. Just looking at the entry book I think next week is when we will start to hit top gear and have plenty of runners.

Ginger Lady

It’s the start of the Punchestown Festival today, which Phil was writing about last week and he was reminiscing about the great trips they had over there. They were always regally entertained by various organisations and I am sure Phil will be filling you in with a few more stories of what they got up to in future weeks. This festival is a great few days and the climax of the jumping season over in Ireland. People save horses especially for this meeting and there are lots of conditions attached to the races, which makes it even better. There are always a lot of pointers to the future in the bumpers and it is well worth re-running the races to watch wherever they finish. It is another place everybody should go to at least once when they are ticking off racecourses.

(L) TTMAB and (R) Saint Anthony

The BHA has announced today that the authorised betting partners have run its course as the new Levy kicks in today. It may have cost the racecourses a bit in lost sponsorship, and one or two racecourses opted out, which was disappointing, but let’s hope the new Levy system is not challenged in the courts and the money can start filtering down to where it is most needed. I just hope it doesn’t go to pay wages and pensions of people who will not be in our industry very long.


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