Astrostorm runs tonight in the 6.15 ....

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A very happy Valentines Day to all our horses

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

"Anyone can catch your eye, but it takes someone special to catch your heart."


Sunrise over Newmarket

Walking to the Cambridge Road 

It’s a bright morning but the wind is quite strong and with the temperature not very high, it is making it pretty cold. We have had another busy morning with gallopers on the Cambridge Road polytrack at first lot and then stalls at second lot. For a change the stalls went perfectly and we will be running said horse on Thursday at Chelmsford. The orphan foal has been fed every 45 minutes by bottle. I managed to get Angie to sleep for a few hours yesterday afternoon / early evening when I took over the job, but she was up all night herself. The foster mother arrives today and the process of mare and foal bonding will start as soon as possible. It usually works, but there is no guarantee so I will keep you informed of progress as the week goes on.

Astrostorm leading Mr Turner

I see Tony McCoy is sticking to his guns about lady jockeys. He even goes as far to suggest that they should go over the channel to further their racing careers. I don’t think it is a bad idea to offer them some incentive and the 4lbs they get could make a massive difference if they have got the ability of several of our good girls. Whether the BHA will ever bring it in over here is open to debate and I suppose they will be watching what happens with this French initiative before changing anything in this country. Just a thought though, if we let fillies and mares have an allowance when running against colts, why not do it with the jockeys?

Working upsides is (L-R) Topalova, Lost The Moon and Bracken Brae

I see my favourite track York have put their prize money up at their biggest meeting of the year, the Ebor Festival. The Juddmonte now will be worth £1 million and every race on the cards will not be run for less than £60,000. This is a great initiative, but sadly most of the money will go to the same owners, who don’t run for the money. The major players who are keeping our industry afloat at present certainly don’t race for the money and the sooner our BHA understands this the better. Prize money must be distributed to the lower and middle races as quickly as possible and increased considerably if we are to maintain and even try and recruit new owners. There is much talk of the new levy creating more income, but it must go to prize money straight away as we are starting to get on the slippery slope and the incentives are not there to encourage people. We are the only sport in the world where the players are paid a pittance.


Two new additions to the stud

Monday, 13 February 2017

"Don’t find fault. Find a remedy."

Henry Ford.

The string out at first lot

It’s a bright morning, but with much more wind than we have had of late it is making it feel colder. There has been plenty going on, both in the yard, and at the stud over the weekend. In the yard my feeder and I have parted company. She informed us she was going to give us a week’s notice anyway, so going straight away was the best thing. I will now be seeing 4 o’clock again on a regular basis, although we have had several applications for the job already and will be conducting interviews this week. We also need a travelling person and two good work riders. If we got those the team would be complete. The horses have been out cantering close to home on the normal polytracks. They are fit and well and look pictures, and they are showing their wellbeing in how they are running at present.

     61_Blossom     Brushing_foal
(L) Mount Nelson ex Seasonal Blossom bay filly and (R) Casamento ex Brushing chesnut colt

At the stud we had two foals yesterday, one at 5.45 in the morning and one at 4 o’clock in the afternoon. Both foals are fine but unfortunately we lost one of the mares who had a haemorrhage and died very quickly. It is not the nicest thing and the whole stud will take it badly. A foster mother is booked, but until we can get her swabs done and in situ, we will be feeding the foal every hour by hand. Needless to say Angie was up all night doing that job and David and his crew are supporting as much as possible. We have had foster mothers before and they are usually very good. Let’s hope this one will be as well. I would just like to thank all the staff, Hattie the vet and the people who helped afterwards for their professionalism in dealing with this matter. It is never easy, but it does happen.

The snow at the weekend

Tom Morton being presented with his champange

We had quite a lot of snow at the weekend, which didn’t last too long, but it always makes for a good picture and I took plenty of snaps which will be used later on in the year. I think the weather is due to get milder this week so it may be a while before we see some again. The runner up in the Christmas quiz called in at the weekend to receive his prize. He was one of the founder members of the newspaper horses we had years ago called Cliburnal News who ran for three papers in Clitheroe, Burnley and Nelson. She won three times and gave a group of people a lot of fun. So congratulations go to Tom Morton and I hope he enjoys his champagne.


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