8th March 2014
Plus 5 and drizzling when driving in. A Scottish mist morning?
Jason Maguire was in for a couple of lots this morning.
We worked A Shade Of Bay, Able Deputy, Almadan, Bishophill Jack, Charingworth, Harry Topper, Kings Opus, Knockanrawley, La Belle Savauge, Silver Eagle, Patsy's Castle, Sunblazer, West End, Trumix, Savant Bleu, Gaelic Myth, Kibo, The Scarlett Woman, Tara's Rainbow, Grandma Smith, Amazing D'Azy, Midnight Oscar, South Stack and Max Bygraves. All the rest cantered.
We also jumped Harry Topper, Muldoons Picnic, A Shade of Bay, Bishophill Jack, Able Deputy and Such A Legend over hurdles or fences.
Saturday being Saturday and a Saturday before the big festival week we had a few people calling in this morning.
Malcolm and Maribeth Keeling and Alan and Philippa Brierley were here for a morning on the gallops followed by breakfast, as booked through CD Tours.
Mel Pyman and Sue Tagg called in 3rd lot to see their two horses Savant Bleu and Trumix and Iain and Angela Bell called in to see Silver Eagle and Knockanrawley.
We have no runners today but we do have 5 tomorrow.
I am going to Market Rasen where we run Such A Legend, Jimmy The Jetplane and Ballywatt. and Mat is going to Warwick were we run Grand March and By The Boardwalk.
At Market Rasen Such A Legend drops back to 2 miles over hurdles; a suggestion of Nick Scholfield's although as it has turned out Jason Maguire now rides. SAL has plenty of ability so should go well.
Jason also rides Jimmy The Jetplane who again will run well; he showed ability on his first run at Doncaster and we will ride him differently. Jimmy's owners Peter and Karin Swann have horses with James Given so they are used to being in the area.
Both the above horses run in competitive looking novice hurdles.
Ballywatt is frustrating and with a new jockey in Dougie Costello who knows. I believe it is his owners birthday today so come on Ballywatt do your bit please.
At Warwick By The Boadwalk who will be ridden by Nick Scholfield has a squeak and his recent wind operation just could make a difference and Grand March runs in his first handicap and has been waiting for better ground. It would be no surprise to see him go close; Ed Cookson rides.
Yesterdays Cheltenham preview lunch talk at The Bell at Langford went well and if you pass the village I would highly recommend a visit as their food was pretty special as was their Spanish wine..!
A lady walking down the street saw a dogtrotting along "What is your name" she asked, the dog replied "My name is Louie, I have been in and out of puddles all day, and I am having a wonderful time"
The lady went further down the street when she saw another dog and asked it's name "My name is Huey I have been in and out of puddles all day, I am having a tremendous time"
Round the corner she saw another dog, a similar story was told " Hello I am Dewey, I have been in and out of puddles all day and I am having a great day"
Further down the road she saw a dejected, tired dog "What is your name" she asked, the dog replied "My name is Puddles and I am having a bloody awful day!''
7th March 2014
Plus 8, damp and windy when driving in.
An early start to Lambourn with The Drinkymeister, Mrs Peachey, Crazy Jack and Devils Paintbrush.
We then jumped Crazy Jack and Devils Paintbrush over hurdles
All 4 are due to run in the next couple of weeks so an away day in the horse box will have done them good.
John Perriss came to watch his horse The Drinkymeister and Henry Kimbell, who runs our Racing For Research Partnership, made it down to Lambourn to watch his horse Devils Paintbrush work; it was an unusually early start for him as he came from London.
Michael Wilkes was here third lot to see the horses he is involved in; Milord, Un Ace, Sparville and Devils Paintbrush.
Great to have Mrs B home and after a bit of bribery she only has a cast on her arm from her elbow to wrist which will make life easier for her...and me!
Undressing is one thing but dressing is not so easy as I found out all too soon.....Carers must be saints.
The Bell Inn at Langford was where I lunched today.
A new pub whose owners asked me to do a Cheltenham Preview; interesting?
Makes a change from an evening one.
Good old Smiley, not George, but Nick.
Nick Scholfield jumped out at me on page 7 of today's Racing Post.
Some say that he smiles even when he falls!!
Nick was rushing to Cheltenham and needed help...
His request approved, Nick Scholfield quickly used a mobile phone to call the local airport to charter a flight.
He was told a twin-engine plane would be waiting for him at the airport.
Arriving at the airfield, he spotted a plane warming up outside a hanger.
He jumped in with his bag, slammed the door shut, and shouted, 'Let's go'.
The pilot taxied out, swung the plane into the wind and took off.
Once in the air, Nick instructed the pilot, 'Fly over the racecourse and make low passes so I can take pictures of the lay out of the cross country course.'
'Why?' asked the pilot.
'Because I'm a jockey and I wont have time to walk the course', he responded, 'and I need to see where I am going.'
The pilot was strangely silent for a moment, finally he stammered, 'So, what you're telling me, is . . . You're NOT my flight instructor?'
Now the question is.. did Nick Scholfield smile?
6th March 2014
Plus 7 and dry when driving in.
Firstly many thanks from Clare for all the messages and phone calls; hugely appreciated
Poor girl had her operation yesterday afternoon and thankfully that all went well.
Not only has she broken her arm, but she needed her wrist wired in places.
Clare was still in hospital last night and is due to be plastered from her shoulder down to her wrist this morning; hopefully she will be home this afternoon. Not ideal timing.. says I selfishly.. and yes it could have been worse as we all know.
I fear I shall get to know the cooker well, and perhaps Waitrose!
Cheltenham General's nurses, doctors and surgeons have all been brilliant.
Cheltenham races indirectly played a big part as Jon Mutimer performed the operation and local Doctor Guy Rooker called in to see Clare. Both Jon and Guy work at Cheltenham next week. Guy kindly sent me an email having seen Clare.
Guy let it slip, when seeing Clare, that she was in the best room in the hospital and it was the same room that Prince Charles stayed in.. Sadly being her right arm that is plastered, and being right handed, she will not be able to add her signature to the wall?
David Keyte was here 2nd lot to see his horse Harry Topper canter. It was David's first visit to the yard outside an open day. David was also here to meet up with Daniel Pallett of BBC Midlands television and he and I did a short interview about Harry's chances.
Harry Topper undoubtedly did his best ever piece of work for us yesterday; Shane Collins, who looks after and rides HT everyday was thrilled with him.
Sadly HT's participation in this years Cheltenham Gold Cup is so ground related, and the weather forecast is not looking too helpful.
We jumped Grand March this morning over hurdles as for some stupid reason we missed him yesterday. GM jumped with West End.
Our two first day Cheltenham entries Un Ace and Muldoons Picnic both strutted their stuff well yesterday and are on course to run.
Today we declared Twelve Roses for every race he is in, ever hopeful that he will get in one of the handicaps rather than run in the Neptune.
I am pleased that the Philip Fenton case is sorted and now any stigma of being beaten by one of his horses will not cause problems. A relief to many in racing, although the court case will make interesting reading as to how the supposed drugs arrived there.
We had some new hurdles arrive this week so today we played around with the 'schooling field' and put new the hurdles up and ready to be used.
This made me laugh...
EMAIL MESSAGES EXCHANGED BETWEEN HUSBAND AND WIFE!
Message sent by the husband:
I was run over by a car when I left my office.
Paula took me to the Hospital.
I was under examinations until now.
The bang on the head doesn't seem to have caused any important damage.
I had a bad hit on my right leg, and maybe they will have to amputate the foot.
Reply by the wife:
Who is Paula!
5th March 2014
4th March 2014
Minus 1 and dry when driving in. We had rain yesterday but not much more forecasted!
Dermot Clancy and Michael Wills... you are both in my bad books!
Dermot, who is one of the 4 partners in The Rainbow Hunter offered Clare a day out with the Pytchley yesterday, a lovely gesture and one Mrs B was certainly looking forward to. The down side; it was also a day when her lunatic brother Michael was also going to be out too.
Fun arranged and fun had, but the time Mrs B arrived home last night our romantic night out, to celebrate 13 years of married bliss was never going to happen.
Sadly best laid plans were not to be and the sumptuous delights of Cheltenham's newest and smartest Hotel No 131 fell off the radar..
Another night hopefully; but if you have not booked a room for next weeks Cheltenham Festival I believe they have at the odd room available.. It is well worth the experience as I will find out one day!.
John and Liz Wills called in late yesterday morning to see Sunblazer and were suitably impressed to buy a share. Two shares left now.
Graham Potts our vet was in for his weekly visit. Graham was in to B&T test all our potential Cheltenham runners. Nervous times.. One week today it all starts.
John Sweeney, who has the promising bumper horse Kibo here has asked me, along with his other trainer Alan King, who trains his Manyriverstocross, to help out and share a panel at a Cheltenham Preview evening for charity. The venue for tonights Cheltenham Preview is Hendon, North London and the event is organised by The Claddagh Ring
Before you go give this a read. It was the address written and read by Dan and Bobby Richmond-Watson at their grandmother Jean's memorial service last week.
'Granny you were a survivor, you were born before television, before penicillin, polio vaccine, frozen foods, emails, contact lenses and the internet. You were before radar, credit cards, split atoms, laser beams and ballpoint pens, before dishwashers, tumble driers, electric blankets, air conditioners, drip-dry clothes.... and before man walked on the moon.
You got married first and then lived together (how quaint is that?) You thought "fast food" was what you ate in Lent, a "Big Mac" was an oversized raincoat and "crumpet" was what you had for tea. You lived before househusbands, computer dating and "sheltered accommodation" was where you waited for a bus.
You were before daycare centers, care homes and disposable nappies. You had never heard of FM radio, CD's, artificial hearts and word processors, or young men wearing earrings. For you "time sharing" meant togetherness, a "chip" was a piece of wood or fried potato, "hardware" meant nuts and bolts and "software" wasn't a word.
Before 1940 "Made in Japan" meant junk, the term "making out", referred to how you did in your exams, "stud" was something that fastened a collar to a shirt and "going all the way" meant staying on a double decker bus to the terminal. In your day, cigarette smoking was "fashionable", "grass" was mown, "coke" was kept in the coalhouse, a "joint" was a piece of meat you ate on Sundays and "pot" was something you cooked in. And "Rock Music" was a fond mother's lullaby.
You and grandpa must have been a hardy bunch when we think of the way in which the world has changed and the adjustments you have had to make. But by the grace of God..... you did survive to 95!'
To end. This weeks movers and shakers in the handicap charts are.. Flemensmix down 3 to 110 and Premier Portrait down 2 to 111.
3rd March 2014
Plus 1 and dry when driving in; a good bit of rain again yesterday.
Twelve Roses and Sunblazer popped over to Lambourn for a piece of work and a school yesterday morning; we had hoped to go for a gallop around Newbury but the ground was so bad there on Saturday that we decided to give it a miss.
Nick Scholfield called in on his way to Huntingdon (he rode a winner) and rode Sunblazer while Ed Cookson rode Twelve Roses.
Saturdays Newbury runner Premier Portrait struggled in the glue like ground.
PP finished 5th and on the face of it he did not run too badly; this chap will be a far better chaser.
The Greatwood Charity lunch was as usual a huge success and a great deal on money was raised. So well done to all who supported and a big thanks.
No thanks to the caterers whose beef was something different and disappointingly did not stay in the system for long!
Will McNeile called in to interview me at 6.30 this morning; Will is doing a dissertation for his college on owners and how trainers find them... The interview did not take long.
Geoff Ellis called in to see Tara's Rainbow late morning. Geoff is a share holder in the KBRP who own this stunning lady.
Sue Stanley, who was at Newbury on Saturday and whose husband John has had shares in horses with me for ages, sent this one over.. ..
Ducks in Heaven!
Three women die together in an accident and go to heaven.
When they get there, St. Peter says, 'We only have one rule here in heaven: Don't step on the ducks!'
So they enter heaven, and sure enough, there are ducks all over the place.
It is almost impossible not to step on a duck, and although they try their best to avoid them, the first woman accidentally steps on one.
Along comes St. Peter with the ugliest man she ever saw.
St. Peter chains them together and says, 'Your punishment for stepping on a duck is to spend eternity chained to this ugly man!'
The next day, the second woman steps accidentally on a duck and along comes St. Peter, who doesn't miss a thing.
With him is another extremely ugly man.
He chains them together with the same admonishment as for the first woman.
The third woman has observed all this and, not wanting to be chained for all eternity to an ugly man, is very, very careful where she steps.
She manages to go months without stepping on any ducks, then one day St.Peter comes up to her with the most handsome man she has ever laid eyes on.... Very tall, long eyelashes, muscular.
St. Peter chains them together without saying a word.
The happy woman says,'I wonder what I did to deserve being chained to you for all of eternity?'
The guy says 'I don't know about you, But I stepped on a Duck.........
1st March 2014
Minus 3 and dry when driving in.
Minus 3 was the coldest start of the winter so far.
Firstly today it is Harry Bailey's 25th Birthday. Happy Birthday Harry.
Most Saturday mornings we have the odd person here for a 'morning on the gallops followed by breakfast' and today we had Graham and Gillian Bate (no show from them!!), Angela Rowles, David Gadd, Kelly Gutteridge and Graham Thomas; all booked through CD Tours.
Vince Burmingham was here 4th lot to see his horses. Vince is involved in several KBRP horses including Silver Eagle, Savant Bleu, Milord, Knockanrawley and Wrestow Lady.
Lizzie Wills called in to see the two horses she has shares in..Un Ace and Sunblazer (3 shares left)
We worked a few this morning and they were...Crazy Jack, Un Ace, Harry Topper, Mrs Peachey, West End, The Drinkymeister, Silver Eagle, Patsy's Castle, Such A Legend, Knockanrawley, Grand March, Kings Opus, Gallery Exhibition, South Stack, Sparville, Devils Paintbrush, Gaelic Myth, The Scarlett Woman, Magic Money, Max Bygraves, Midnight Oscar, Muldoons Picnic and Ballywatt. All the rest cantered.
Newbury today for two reasons.
Firstly we have a runner in the shape of Premier Portrait.
PP ran well enough last time out when 4th at Warwick and the drop back in trip should suit..PP will run well and could well be placed again; Ed Cookson rides..
We are also at Newbury because we are all supporters of todays main sponsor Greatwood.
I host a table at lunch and start proceedings with Henry Hannon by doing the heads and tails. It is our 10th year together!. It is always a quick, fun and easy way to raise money at £10 a head and 300 people.
Hopefully by the time we finish this evening we will have raised well over £50,000.00 for the Charity though auctions and silent auctions.. You know the form?
'Big Mike' sent this one over for your amusement..
53,000 Scousers meet in Anfield for a 'Scousers Are Not Stupid' convention.
Steven Gerrard addresses the crowd.. 'We are all here today to prove to the world that Scousers are not stupid. Can I have a volunteer please?'
Wayne Rooney gingerly works his way through the crowd and steps up to the stage.
Gerrard asks him 'What is 15 plus 15?'
After 15 or 20 seconds Rooney says, ' Forty!'
Obviously everyone is a little disappointed.
Then the Scousers start chanting 'Give him another chance! Give him another chance!'
Gerrard says, 'Well since we have a capacity crowd, world-wide press and global broadcast media here, I think we can give him another chance.'
So he asks, 'What is 5 plus 5?'
After nearly 30 seconds he eventually says, ' Twelve?'
Gerrard looks down and just lets out a dejected sigh.
Everyone is disheartened and Rooney starts crying.
But then the 53,000 Scousers begin to yell and wave their hands shouting, 'Give him another chance! Give him another chance!'
Gerrard, unsure whether he is now doing more harm than good eventually says, 'OK then, what is 2 plus 2?'
Silence hangs over the stadium.
Rooney closes his eyes, and after a whole minute eventually says, 'Four?'
Pandemonium breaks out throughout the stadium as the Scouse crowd stand to a man, wave their arms, stomp their feet and scream,
'Give him another chance! Give him another chance!'
To end.. TNDGB suggest slippers for old men like me.. His time will come as they say?
Have a great weekend.
28th February 2014
27th February 2014
Plus 7 and dry when driving in. We had rain over night but not that much.. 2mm.
A good win yesterday on the all weather at Lingfield with Supreme Present.
These hastily arranged meeting for 'Jumpers bumpers' on the all-weather are good news, especially for those horses who have sound legs and love fast ground.
My two all-weather runners yesterday both performed with great credit. Supreme Present showed A P McCoy to be a pretty decent flat jockey and Ellins Tower nearly did the same for Nick Scholfield, although he was overtaken on the line to finish second.
A welcome winner from here for Lucky Bin Racing and Robert Chugg. Robert bred SP so he was doubly pleased. Nearly good news for ET's owners David and Julie Martin who by the time you read this would have jetted off on holiday for a few days.
Bizarrely I think SPs win was my first all-weather flat winner.. I have had loads of jump (hurdle) winners on the all-weather when they were around.
At Bangor the ground was worse than I had anticipated. Flemensmix struggled to finish 3rd and then put his foot in a hole passing the post and fell over; he was not the only horse to do so on the day. Flemensmix seems fine this morning.
It was an early start this morning taking Twelve Roses, Sunblazer, Charingworth and Almadan to Lambourn. Then I left for London to attend the AGM of the NTF; leaving Mrs B to represent me at Ludlow.
Incidentally we don't have many shares left in Sunblazer.
Talking Ludlow Molly's A Diva and Jason Maguire team up in what looks a competitive mares only hurdle.
We have added sheepskin cheek pieces to Molly's head as she seems to spend too much time looking elsewhere. If they help she could easily win this.
I shall be watching in a betting shop somewhere.
Hopefully somewhere is not in a hospital.. which reminded me of this little story about nurses...
This poor nurse's story is not a happy one.
'Of course I wont laugh', said the nurse. ''I'm a professional. In over twenty years I've never laughed at a patient.''
''OK then,'' said Bob, and he proceeded to drop his trousers, revealing the smallest male part the nurse had ever seen. In length and width was almost identical to AA battery.
Unable to control herself, the nurse tried to stop giggling, but it just came out.
Feeling very badly that she had laughed at the man's part, she composed herself as well as she could.
''I am sorry,'' she said..''I don't know what came over me. On my honor as a nurse and as a lady, I promise that wont happen again. Now tell me, what seems to be the problem?''
''Its swollen,'' Bob replied.
She ran out of the room.
26th February 2014
Plus 1 and dry when driving in. Stars in the sky.
We survived our first Cheltenham Preview evening. There was a good turn out for last nights Festival preview at The Slug and Lettuce; it went off well with no difficult questions. Oli Bell is a pro at these sort of evenings. Well done to Chris for sorting the evening and I am sure it is one that will grow.
We worked a few this morning and there were.. Able Deputy, Devils Paintbrush, Gallery Exhibition, Grand March, Kings Opus, Magic Money, Mrs Peachey, Premier Portrait, Patsy's Castle, The Drinkymeister, Midnight Oscar, Bishophill Jack, Max Bygraves, Savant Bleu and Sparville; all the rest cantered.
Third lot this morning we were visited by Paul and Elizabeth Kellar who were her to see Handsome Harry. Nick Cook who was here to see Silver Eagle and Midnight Oscar and John Stanley who was on his way over to see Wrestow Lady.
Edward Whitaker was here to take photos of Harry Topper and Jamie Watson was here to interview me.
The Cheltenham media frenzy continues with the announcement of the handicap weights for all the Festival handicaps. That was held at Cheltenham. Most trainers with runners were asked.
Last night the Godolphin sponsored Stud and Stable Staff awards were handed out and it was very noticeable that all the award winners were from the flat racing side of our sport which I though was rather disappointing.
I nominated one well known member of my team, who certainly deserved to get through to the finals, but he never made it past the first round.
3 runners today at 2 different meetings.
At 'Leafy' Lingfield we run Supreme Present who must have a great chance after two good runs on the faster surface of the all weathers. Henderson's horse to beat but we have AP McCoy on board.
We also run Ellin's Tower there in the mares only bumper. Again she should go well on this surface; she has good grass bumper form and she has a great pedigree; yes we expect a good run especially with Nick Scholfield riding.
At Bangor where the ground will be awful we run Flemensmix. It will be interesting to see how he fares on his handicap debut; is he fairly treated?.. well we will find out. Ed Cookson rides him again. The extra 1/2 mile should help.
Two scousers in prison, are writing home, one asks the other "ow d'ya spell Darryl" his cellmate chews on the end of his crayon for a second replying "ya dont know anyone called Darryl"
"yeh i know dat " he replied... "am writing to me mam askin for a pair of shoes Darryl fit me....