Sylvestre de Sousa is doing so well ...


A cold start to the day with a ground frost

Friday, 02 November 2018

"You are fate’s shadow or fate’s sun, depending on which way you turn."

Terri Guillemets.

The sun is rising and there is a frost on the ground

It was a bright cold start to the day with the biggest ground frost of the year so far and was the first time we had to use the defroster spray on the windscreen of the horsebox. It had to leave the yard early to go and pick up a horse. We have had a good morning with the horses with first lot working on the Cambridge Road polytrack. Everything pleased me and the work went as planned. We can now hopefully, subject to good blood test results, have a few runners next week mainly close to home at Chelmsford City.

Roof Garden

Our horses were sold yesterday on the final day of the Tattersalls Horses In Training sale. It is an amazing sale and there was an exceptionally strong clearance rate of 90%. This sale attracts buyers from all over the world, as we said yesterday, and ours have gone to the Middle East and to Serbia. I wish them all well and although they didn’t make huge sums, but on looking at the results closely we have not lost as much as some.

Garrison Law

On quickly looking at the racing results from yesterday I see that things must be changing. At Wolverhampton the novice race was won by a horse that cost $500,000 for the Maktoum Family and the nursery was won by one costing £350,000 for the Coolmore Partnership. Their prize money was just over £3,500. At Newcastle in a five runner novice race, where they were well strung out, they were racing for just £5,500. It just goes to show that when you have a good surface and a straight mile, people will travel to run for a pittance. It is disappointing though for normal trainers that the novice race system has completely worked against them rather than for them. Something certainly needs to be done to sort out this problem, but don’t hold your breath as it seems the BHA are so influenced from the top.

Garrel Glen walking round the yard

It was very disappointing to see that  sports minister Tracey Crouch tended her resignation from the government yesterday, but at least she has principles and stands up for them. It is all about the timing of the FOBT machine stake reduction which has been delayed by the government. To my mind it should have come in straight away. I know the bookmakers will say shops will shut because of it but I am not certain that is right. I hope whoever replaces the minister will have the racing industry at heart.


What a horrible wet day

Thursday, 01 November 2018

"Other things may change us, but we start and end with the family."

Anthony Brandt.

Cantering on Hamilton Hill

Garrison Law at first lot

It’s a very wet day with a constant downpour since early morning. It is not cold though and there is no wind. We have just been getting in and out and cantering on Hamilton Hill. The Jockey Club have started a major refurbishment of the Rubbing House canter today which will mean six to eight weeks of closures to certain walking and cantering grounds. It will be a bit difficult for a few yards but in the long run the improvements will be worth it.

Astromerry at second lot

Our horses are in the sales today and I think we will go through the ring early to mid-afternoon. It has been a very strong sale once again with the foreign buyers to the fore. Tattersalls do a great job of looking after everybody from so many different countries who will have all sorts of price range ambitions, from the minimum bid of £800 up to the £1 million made for a filly sold yesterday. Let’s hope ours all find good new homes and continue their careers in winning ways.

Walking home in the rain

The build up to the Breeders Cup continues with the horses having all arrived at Churchill Downs and getting used to their new surroundings. I don’t think the draw has been very kind to most of ours as the kickback will certainly play a part, especially if it rains and the ground goes very muddy and loose. There are lots of European runners this year and let’s hope we can get a surprise or two and keep up our tradition of bringing some money home.


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