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It's mild but with grey skies

Tuesday, 06 November 2018

"Alas, by the time Fate caught up with my life, Chance had it all planned."

Robert Brault.

Cantering at sunrise

It’s relatively mild today but the sky is grey and looks like we may be in for a bit of rain later although it’s not forecast. We have been doing two canters up the hill for first lot followed by the round canter for the rest. Tim is still working hard in the lunge pit with the new yearling fillies’ and with a new rider starting this morning all is going to plan.

Roof Garden

What a result in Australia with a one, two, three for the Brits and Newmarket once again coming out on top. If you had been Hughie Morrison you would have thought you would have been home and dry but with only 8st on its back, Cross Counter flew home under Kerrin McEnvoy to give Godolphin and England its first Melbourne Cup. What a fantastic achievement. I am sure this will motivate so many more trainers and owners to plan for this race in future, and it does take a lot of planning.

Belle Bayeux

It would appear that I am not alone in thinking that gambling advertisements are getting out of hand, even the betting company’s themselves think things have gone too far. Sky will be cutting down their adverts as from next year from four to one per commercial break. A number of betting companies are also talking about changes that they are looking to make. Supporting a pre-watershed ban being one of those things. I think this is definitely a sensible step forward as there will be plenty of under 18’s sitting down with their parents watching racing, football, rugby etc. and being bombarded with adverts. Nowadays you can bet on anything, not only to win, but that’s another story, as well as bingo and lottery. I understand that the general public are their ‘customers’ but it would be good for the gambling companies to take responsibility rather than wait for government action.


Happy staff make for happy horses

Monday, 05 November 2018

"A journey is best measured in friends, rather than miles."

Tim Cahill.

The sunrise over the heath

It’s slightly warmer this morning and I think we are in for a few days of settled weather. We have a full complement of staff in which is always great to see and I must say the ones we have at present are a very happy bunch. Happy staff, happy horses. We have been using Southfields Round once again at first and second lot and the yearlings have been keeping closer to home on the new yearling ground on Hamilton Hill. All has gone well.

At Dullingham Park

It has been an exciting weekend racing wise, especially for Newmarket, with three Breeders’ Cup winners and most of the horses running with credit. Enable was the star of the show and what a filly she is. It’s a great boost for Nathanial who doesn’t stand too far away at Newsalls Park Stud. He also had another Group 1 winner for soon to be retired trainer Luca Cumani in Italy. He is certainly a stallion on the up. We now have the Melbourne Cup to look forward to tomorrow morning, so if you all set you alarm clocks for half past three and turn At The Races on you can watch the race that stops a nation. The majority of Australia and New Zealand will stop for five minutes and watch this iconic race. Aidan O’Brien’s Yucatan will be hard to beat and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Hughie Morrison’s Marmelo run a big race as well. John Gosden’s Muntahaa, who won the Ebor, could also be involved. It is a mammoth purse of over £2 million and I would think the Australians are starting to get sick and tired of seeing the Europeans monopolise their races.

Richard and Wendy Marriott looking at their mares

Whilst talking about the Breeders’ Cup there were quite a few things to come out of it which shows our sport has completely different rules in every country. Every other sports has the same rules wherever it is played in the world, but ours seems to be a complete mismatch and as soon as the rules are standardised the better. The use of drugs needs to be looked into along with the whip rule as one or two horses in America are getting much too many hits for my liking. Veterinarian inspections with no explanation as to why a horse is scratched, as in the case of the trainer Freddy Head, is another. The starting stalls procedure, which I think is much the best way in America, where they go in stall order, certainly needs thinking about, but all the rules need to be consistent to make our sport look more professional rather than in some cases very amateurish.


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