Altered Method runs tonight in the 7.15 ...


The wind has picked up this morning

Thursday, 08 November 2018

"Anybody who wants to rule the world should try to rule a garden first."

Gardening Saying.

The sunrises over the town at this time of year are stunning

The sun is shining quite bright this morning but it is colder than it looks. I think that is down to the fact that there is a strong wind both in the yard and out on the heath. There is no rain forecast for today, which is a plus, but I think we may get a few showers tomorrow at some point. The older horses have been using the Round Canter again followed by Hamilton Hill. The yearling colts have been on the new yearling ground and are coming on great. We hope that by Saturday all the yearling fillies will have been ridden away.

Pageant Master

At Chelmsford last night Belle Bayeux ran with credit. She was up against a field of expensive bred horses but didn’t disgrace herself in any way. She has ability and will certainly win races. Definitely a horse to be excited about. Roof Garden was a bit disappointing. Ridden differently from his previous two wins he was then denied a clear run when going for a gap and was never in a position to win the race. However I do think this run will put him match fit for his next outing.

Walking back to the yard

The whip rule debate is continuing apace with South Africa trialling whip-free races. After the controversy in the Breeders’ Cup with the over use of the whip things need to change and I think this is the way we are heading. Here in Britain and Ireland, apprentices, amateurs and conditional jockeys do have a series of races where whips can be carried but not used, but I think the top jockeys would struggle with this. They are so used to being able to use their sticks that it would be hard to get out of the habit, but with more and more public pressure we, as an industry, have to be seen to be doing something. I await with interest the outcome of these trials.


We have two runners tonight

Wednesday, 07 November 2018

"The nice thing about doing a crossword puzzle is, you know there is a solution."

Stephen Sondheim.


It was raining on and off throughout the night and is still raining now. As we write this you can hear it bouncing off the office roof. It is also quite windy but mild. It is still unseasonably warm for this time of year and is forecast to stay that way for at least the next week. Night time temperatures are also higher than they should be. The horses have been out using the Round Canter this morning and with a full complement of staff in all has gone well.

Velvet Vista

We have two runners tonight, both at Chelmsford. Our first runner is Belle Bayeux in the seven furlong fillies’ novice at 5.20. She had a good introduction to racing at Yarmouth just over two weeks ago and will have come on for that run. There are some real blue bloods in this race today but she is in great form and I wouldn’t be surprised if she were in the mix. Roof Garden is our other runner in the one mile handicap at 6.50. He is a two time course and distance winner and my only concern is that he hasn’t run for quite a while. Although he was raised 10lbs for his last run he still has plenty in hand. I am really confident of a good run from him.

Cantering this morning

The win at all cost mentality came to the fore in the Melbourne Cup yesterday. Six jockeys were either suspended or fined all for excessive whip use, including the winner, second and third placed. I understand that the adrenaline is heightened but they can all count and they know the rules. As I have said on numerous occasions if there was any chance of being disqualified in one of these big races, and it is more prevalent in Group races, then nobody would exceed the number of slaps given to a horse. The sooner the punishment fits the crime the better.


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