We have one runner tonight at Sandown
Wednesday, 13 July 2016
"Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated."
It started off dull at first lot but as the morning has progressed, it has got much brighter and warmer. We have been cantering on the Rubbing House polytrack and Southfields round for the first two lots work this morning and all has gone well.
Desert River leading Time Down Under and Dixon
We have one runner tonight at Sandown. We are in the last, the 8.40, where we will nearly need miner’s lamps and oxygen. The groundsman tells us they had very little rain yesterday and overnight and the ground is genuinely good, so I will be letting her take her chance. Harry Bentley rides in what looks a competitive little contest and I hope she can put her best foot forward. It was a very muddling race last time at Lingfield, which didn’t suit her, but I would think tonight’s could be up her street. Let’s hope so.
Indian Red and Gee Sixty Six
I see Mark Johnston has had plenty of people disagreeing with him over his comments on the concentration of betting on the TV coverage, especially the bookmakers who are making the most noise. I am sure Mark’s comments were taken out of context. He is a very clear thinker and understands the game thoroughly so some of the letters in today’s Post are missing the point. He understands that the gambling industry keeps the show on the road, but we, the industry, are the main source of income for the bookmakers. Without us they would be in a poor state and other sports couldn’t produce the income for them that we do. Mark understands that, he understands the handicap system well. What he is saying is that the programme is boring and has lost all the fun out of it because of the incessant and constant drivel talked by the so called form experts which we are inundated with constantly. The programme needs to brighten up, have plenty of banter and interest between professionals who know what they are talking about. I will not be commenting further on this matter, but will wait and see what and who ITV comes up with.
The fun needs to be put back in
Tuesday, 12 July 2016
"One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time."
Newmarket stands in the sunshine
We had one or two very sharp downpours last night and I think it is more of the same today. It is very close and muggy and as the day goes on, I am sure we will be getting some thunder and lightning as well. At present it is bright sunshine with big heavy clouds blowing across and we have had two lots out on Southfields round polytrack without a problem. I have not heard many horses coughing on the yard either, so let’s hope we are starting to get over it.
Gee Sixty Six
Regal Galaxy ran a sound enough race last night and only got tired inside the final furlong. She is sure to have benefited from the outing and if keeping to this same sort of trip and level, will be winning shortly.
Authorized ex Four Miracles
It was interesting to read David Ashford’s piece in the Racing Post this morning when he was talking about a ladies race being run today at Beverley. It was first run in 1992 when the value of it to the winner was £3,184. In 2011 it went as low as £1,617 and today it is worth £2,588. I don’t know what the equivalent value was back in 1992, but that was 24 years ago and it should have trebled, at least, in value. It just goes to show how pathetic our prize money is and what urgency our leaders should be taking to get the value of races much higher. Our leaders have been hoodwinked for the last 30 years and with the expansion of the fixtures list and computerised betting, it is the professionals and the people who produce the actors who constantly lose out. If they don’t do something about it, there will be no actors left, or if there is they will only be owned and trained by 20 people.
Walking back home through the woods
I cannot agree more with Mark Johnston and his comments on the new ITV coverage when they take over from Channel 4 in the autumn. Make the programme more interesting with presenters who know what they are talking about from the inside and how it actually works, instead of the boring monosyllabic tones of gambling gurus. We certainly need to know about the betting and what is happening in the market, but I think the analysis can be cut down and we can see more of the horses at home on the gallops and get more insight that way. It would make for a much better programme and I am sure viewing figures would go up as it develops. Certainly the presenting team will have to have the knowledge, be bright and above all make it fun. That is what seems to have gone out of the Channel 4 programme, the enjoyment that horses can bring everyone.
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