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It started off foggy, but the sun is now shining

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

"If you call a thing bad you do little, if you call a thing good you do much."

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

06_C_Bond
Comrade Bond (Brian)

It’s a misty, cold morning and I turned both heaters on in the office first thing, when I got in. It was one of those days yesterday when I kept seeing the vet. It started at first lot, continued on until lunchtime and then I was visiting the equine hospital at 2 o’clock this morning. All the horses involved will hopefully recover without any more problems, but it certainly was one of those days and I seem to have had a few of those lately. We have been cantering on Bury Side most of the morning, which thankfully has gone without a hitch.

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Walking home in the fog at first lot

We have three runners today, two at Southwell this afternoon and one this evening at Kempton. We will start at Southwell where our first runner is Legal Art in the 7f maiden. It is quite a good days racing, prize money wise, and this maiden is worth £8,000, which for Southwell is amazing. She has run well in all her starts and if she takes to the surface must be there about once again. I think the dangers will be the Godolphin gelding and Mick Easterby’s. They have both shown reasonable form. Our other runner there is Prayer Time, who won very well on his only visit to the track, but went up an enormous 20lbs in the handicap for it, which was completely barmy when you and I could have finished in the frame that day. He has since been slightly disappointing at Wolverhampton and I thought we had better try him back here to see if the surface was the one certain denominator. The un-penalised Ralph Beckett horse looks very well in, but you should never be frightened of one, so here’s hoping.  Our runner tonight at Kempton is Hold Firm, who runs in the 1m handicap at 6.15. He is drawn well for a change and I am sure will be not far away, if he gets any luck in running. There should be a good turnout of his owners to cheer him on.

Peeps_Avalour__Swilken
Peeps, Astrovalour and Swilken cantering in the sun at second lot

I see there is going to be another race meeting in China, done in cooperation with the Emirates Race Authority. They are supplying all the horses, jockeys and support staff to put on a race day at Jinma racecourse. All the 56 horses will be leased to the local Chinese owners for the day and it will be another experience for the Chinese public to get involved in the racing industry. I see the horses have gone into quarantine and I hope they will be quarantined when they come back as well. This international movement of horses needs to be very closely monitored, to stop any major outbreak that could put a dramatic block on any racing, if one broke out. I think this is one of the major subjects we should be looking at worldwide, with the movement of horses and the expansion of international racing. We should also look at other horse related sports, show jumping, endurance racing, eventing, polo etc as these horses can carry very strange diseases if the quarantine and veterinary facilities aren’t up to scratch. One big outbreak of a strange disease could cause major disruption. We all need to be vigilant and take full responsibility for our actions.

 

It could have gone smoother

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

"Don’t be mean when you’ve had a bad day. Be nice, and your day will get better."

Terri Guillemets.

02_in_pairs
Cantering in pairs on the grass

It is slightly overcast this morning and cool, but once again there is no wind so it is not biting cold. We have had no rain yet, but it is forecast and I suspect it will be here by the end of the week. We have had a mixed morning, with things not going entirely smoothly and one or two outbursts have had to happen. We have been using the grass, mainly on Bury Side, which as I have told you is in great condition and the horses just bounce off the surface. We have got them all in very good form and we will be having some runners tomorrow on the all-weather.

     06_H_Firm__P_Time     11_Smile

 Hold Firm and Prayer Time                                 Smile That Smile

I have been quoted in the Racing Post today as to why I love the Lincoln handicap and what it means to most trainers. It is a race that should still be in the spotlight, but with all the racing we have nowadays, it seems to get lost. It was the start of the flat season on turf and everybody used to look forward to it and the public would bet on the spring double, the Lincoln handicap and the Grand National. Everybody had a chance of winning it and the weights went from 7st 7lbs to 10st, but now they will go from 8st 12lbs to 9st 11lbs, which restricts the whole race and gives only a few people a chance. The top weight in this years Lincoln is rated 111 so the bottom weight is 98, so you can see what I mean. It has changed from the people’s race to being quite elitist, which in my opinion is what Great British racing is trying to do with the new championships. It cuts out the normal racing owner, jockey and trainer and only gives the top few a chance of winning. This to my way of thinking is the wrong way.

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Pastroral Pursuits ex Trew Class filly foal

All the foals continue to thrive and the two we had over the weekend weighed in at 60 and 65 kilos respectively, which is a good weight for a foal. All this years’ crop are good sized, strong individuals and it all bodes well for the future, with four mares still to produce.

 
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