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It's a day to wrap up warm

Monday, 05 December 2016

"Dancing is the poetry of the foot."

John Dryden.

Walking across to the gallop at first lot

Lost The Moon

There’s a good hard frost this morning and it was pretty cold as we cantered on the Rubbing House and Southfields Round polytracks. Both horses and people were well wrapped up and it was a very good exercise. It is bliss to go out and have no coughers and the horses all looked very well when the sunshine came up at second lot. The forecast this week is for it to get a bit warmer with some periods of rain as well.

Second lot warming up in the trotting ring

It looks like we will only have runners on Wednesday this week and let’s hope they are luckier than the ones we have had over the last few days. Lost The Moon got no sort of run at all at Wolverhampton, Hold Firm got hampered when he tried to get into contention and Sweeping Beauty’s jockey decided to disregard orders and do what he fancied, so really we should have had two winners, rather than none. I hate losing and we must get into this winning mode rather than the other way. With the horses all coming right, I am looking for a good run now to put us back where we should be.

Hold Firm leading the yearlings through the open stalls

I see the rates are going up hugely for the racecourses as well, with the majority going up over 100%. A little track like Cartmel has gone up 311%. It will certainly hit these tracks hard and whether the prize money will suffer is anybody’s guess. This tax is a big hidden one and a great revenue stream for HM Revenue and Customs. I am hoping that the BHA can sort this matter out to everybody’s satisfaction and I am seeing that they are having an industry wide meeting next week. I just hope our National Trainers Federation chief executive is strong enough to put his case forward. It will be hard on everybody if we don’t get a readjustment.


We have a busy couple of days with runners

Friday, 02 December 2016

"Fashion is what you adopt when you don’t know who you are."

Quentin Crisp.

The baby hurdles up at the Links

It’s overcast today and much milder. We have no wind and it is the perfect working environment, even Ian took his coat and balaclava off in the office first thing. It’s been a busy morning horse wise with a couple of three-year-olds going to the schooling grounds for the first time. Mr Turner and Regal Galaxy both loved it and after several spins over the poles and tyres, they proceeded to the full size hurdles where they jumped as well as could possibly be expected. We will be giving them some more practice next week and then hoping to run some time before Christmas. The yearlings continue to progress and we now have a colt and filly string who will shortly be venturing onto the heath.

Mr Turner and Regal Galaxy ready to jump off

Unfortunately Permera bled after she ran last night. It is quite a common aliment and is caused mainly by pressure and excitement. We will be talking to all members to decide which way to go with her in the future. 

Mr Turner showing how it should be done

Followed by Regal Galaxy 

Today we have one runner, Lost The Moon at Wolverhampton in one of their twilight meetings. She is in the 6.45 over a mile and a half. She has had three runs so far and this is her first in a handicap. We are drawn on the wide outside which is a big disadvantage, but I think she will run a reasonable race tonight as the trip should suit.

We have two runners on Saturday, one at Wetherby in the afternoon at 3.25 and the other at Wolverhampton at 6.15. Our Wetherby runner, Sweeping Beauty, ran really well first time out at Huntingdon and should have a sound chance of doing so again. Hold Firm is now getting his act together and is not drawn too badly at seven. He is a tough competitor and I think he will be in the firing line if keeping out of trouble.

Astrostorm leading the yearlings on Hamilton Hill

I see we have caused a bit of a stir with the rates debate and that the whole of the industry are starting to talk about it. Rupert Arnold, the NTF chief, has said there is a high level discussion going on. I wish he had told us that in the first place. It is a bit like being in politics in that the peasants are kept in the dark. We are going to have our own meeting and to a certain extent row our own boat. The majority of trainers in Newmarket will certainly be disadvantaged by this huge rise which is another hidden tax.


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