Astrofire and Bracken Brae make the journey to Chelmsford ....

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First canter

Thursday, 09 November 2017

"No legacy is so rich as honesty."

William Shakespeare.


First light

It's much milder and brighter today and there's no wind. We've had a good day with everybody in so the flag is up. The exercise of the morning has been Southfields turf which is about seven and a half furlongs long and then a hack back down the wood chip. All has gone well so far but we are about to have the first string of yearlings out that will be having their first proper canter.

      ginger        roof_garden

Ginger Lady (left) and Roof Garden (right)

The jump season is in full swing now with the Racing Post full of articles. I may be biased but it seems to me that the paper itself is much keener on this side of the business. Mind you, there was a very interesting article on the point to point world in Ireland which has completely changed these last few years. The idea originally of point to points was for farmers and ordinary people to race their hunters against one another for the fun and the sport, but nowadays it is only the professional outfits who are doing it on a commercial basis. How you change it back is very difficult to imagine as the commercial element rather then the fun is a complete mindset with the participants.

      dan2      doro_best

The Dandy Man colt (left) and Isaac Murphy (right) and Garrison Law below who will all be cantering this morning


We have been very busy on the stud this morning with fencing and rails arriving in one place and a tree man coming to topple a considerable amount of dead trees at Dullingham Park. The maintenance on the studs is always ongoing and it is a bit like painting the Forth Bridge in that it is never ending.


True Calling (above and below left) and Astrofire (right) walking through the open stalls

         true_through_s    astro_best


Then off they go from the real stalls for the first time

I think we have only one left to see the stalls this year and she is a backward filly who has not been in work too long. We usually don't have much trouble with the stalls but have had one or two in the last year who have needed a bit more tuition. This year's two year olds have been absolutely brilliant and have never given a jot of trouble. It must be like being at a school when each year's intake behave in a different manner. I always compare myself to a headmaster - the horses are the children and the owners the parents.


The Casamento yearling



A very wet night at Kempton

Wednesday, 08 November 2017

"Clutter is found in so many shapes and sizes. We can find it on our kitchen tables, under our beds, in our cars, and in our heads."

Katrina Mayer.


Lost The Moon

It's a damp morning after a very wet night and it's set to stay this way for the rest of the week. Only the same one non runner this morning, so we have been getting on OK in the yard with just a good healthy canter and a long relaxing walk back.


True Calling

It was very wet last night at Kempton and I would love to see the official numbers of attendees. I'm sure there must have been under a 100 people there and these are the nights that the powers that be ought to attend . It lacks everything a race meeting should be. Saint Anthony didn't take any interest at all in proceedings and will now be having the operation that sorts the men out from the boys. He is the most attractive horse but his thoughts are elswhere and I'm sure we shall see a different animal in the new year. Indian Red ran a sound race to finish fifth. He stays very well and is sure to win on the flat but jumping could be his forte. He has already schooled well and I shall be running him under both codes from now on.


The Dandy Man colt


The papers are full of the Irish victory in Australia and, unless you've experienced it, it's hard to explain what the race means to the southern hemisphere. You think our Grand National is popular but it is nothing compared with the Melbourne Cup. Don't forget the National is run on a Saturday but this race is mid-week. It completely stops, and I mean completely, Australia and New Zealand with everybody having a day off and an interest betting wise. I see the Australians are just beginning to think there are too many overseas runners and the locals can't get into the handicap proper. It will be interesting to see what they do and if they change the entry criteria. The winner and second though were owned by an Australian, albeit both trained in Ireland. There is no help with costs when travelling to Australia unlike the huge incentives Ascot and similar tracks offer the other way round. They don't really want us there and it will be fascinating to see how all this international racing evolves.


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