So many road closures ...

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The weather is unsettled for the next couple of days

Tuesday, 11 September 2018

"The flowers of late winter and early spring occupy places in our hearts well out of proportion to their size."

Gertrude S. Wister.

On Southfields Round Polytrack

It’s a much cooler day and there is a good breeze as well. According to the forecasters we are in for a couple of days of mixed weather with a long band of rain coming from the Atlantic. We are luckier than the Americans though who look like getting hit with a massive hurricane very shortly. The horses have been on Southfields Round polytrack most of the morning and all has gone well so far. Everybody is in who should be in and the yard is ticking over well.

A gentle canter

Our three runners last night had mixed results. Melo Pearl showed up for a long way but I think she needs a mile in future as her mother stayed very well. She will now be handicapped which gives us a much better chance. Velvet Vision was very unlucky in that she got hampered when coming to get involved. She was not beaten very far and is one very much on the up. Ginger Lady was a bit disappointing as she was never going at any stage and I will have to go back to the drawing board with her.

Garrel Glen

We have had one or two horses come back from the races with runny noses. It is not a lot and you can soon clear it up with raceable antibiotics, but I am convinced, like most of my colleagues, that any virus or infection are spread at the racecourse stables where I am sure they do not have a disinfectant programme that works. There is so much racing that there is very little time to turn the stables round. I know for a fact that not all the bedding is removed, it is just shuffled about and the boxes cannot be disinfected between runners. This is one of the areas I would expect the BHA to come down hard on, but it is the courses responsibility and the cost and time factor is certainly against doing the job properly. This is why I have always campaigned for an all-weather track here at Newmarket as the majority of runners would not have to go into a different stable. This is what happens in America and Australia to a certain extent. It is so frustrating for everybody and not one trainer is immune from this when horses catch something from going racing.


We have three runners tonight at Chelmsford

Monday, 10 September 2018

"The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong."

Mahatma Gandhi.

Four Fifty Three

It’s a still, overcast morning but it is certainly not cold. Although the rest of the country is going to get some rain, we look like we are going to miss most of it. It is a busy day with three runners tonight at Chelmsford and the lads are all working well to get everything done before loading up the horses to go mid-morning. We have been cantering on the Hamilton Hill mostly and all has gone well so far.



Quanah didn’t have things go quite to plan when he ran at Ascot on Friday. The ground was a bit firm and I am not too sure how he finished up in the middle of the track, which certainly didn’t suit how we wanted him ridden. The only good thing to come from it is that he should have a handicap mark as from tomorrow and if I can find him some soft ground somewhere I would love him to show what he is capable of. I am sure the soft ground is the key to him.

Our runners tonight start with Melo Pearl in the 6.15. She has had two runs so far, one at Chelmsford and one at Newmarket. We are drawn well tonight in two and I would hope she would run a lot better than she has shown so far on the track. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if she was in the frame at a big price. Our next runner is Velvet Vision at 8.15. This is her first time in a handicap and she has had a big break since she last ran. I think the trip will suit her and this race will put her spot on. She has certainly got a chance of making the frame. Our last runner is Ginger Lady who was a bit disappointing last time out but the race wasn’t run to suit. I am hoping tonight it will be and she can run a good race. She just needs a good strong rhythm throughout.

Velvet Vista

I couldn’t agree more with Richard Hughes’ comments in Saturdays Racing Post on the handicapping system. He says that the winners should be moved but everything else either stays where they are, or go down. It is very frustrating when a genuine who horse tries every time is second and third and keeps going up the handicap but never winning. It is so disappointing for the normal owner when this happens as the prize money, as Richard pointed out, is very poor for the placed horses.


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