6th December 2022
Plus 4 and dry when driving in. We are in winter and shock horror Colder weather is on the way... Watering at Taunton..
Leafy Lingfield, but not since the great storm of 1987 when all the trees in the middle of the course blew down.
We blew nothing down yesterday as Big Suze is now heading for Ben Brain to see why her wind cannot cope with racing.
Percy Veering was looking to be running well when watching on my phone through the hole in the Physique Therapy Couch.. Lucinda was hard at work on my back and when she applied more pressure I closed my eyes and winced.. when I opened them PV was without DB!.. More pain.
What an amazing win in Pakistan.. England defied the odds and won in what can only be described as one of the best/finest Test matches of all time.. Records galore.. Excellent viewing, although sadly I only saw the highlights.. they were excellent too..
Paul and Teresa Forrest were here to see Sprucefrontiers.. Sadly Spruce is resting for the winter.. he will be fine for next season.
Graham Potts our vet was in for his Tuesday visit and this weeks movers and shakers in the BHA handicap charts were. Equus Dreamer down 2 to 125, Imperial Hurricane down 3 to 97, Inflagrante down 1 to 102 and Chianti Classico enters at 131
Please stop dying otherwise this blog will become an obituary one..
Peter Hedger has died.. What a top man he was .. Peter taught me to ride.. not very well, but at least he was funny while trying... I always enjoyed seeing him.. he was a very good trainer and did his bit in every sense of the word.. Tough and honest.. a trier..a character.. He will be missed.
We have three runners today all at Uttoxeter and although I will not be making the journey Mat will be there to saddle.. Isle Of Gold, Parc d’Amour and Talk Of the Moon. For my thoughts please click here.
Martin FG sent this one over..
I was doing a crossword in the pub and said to my Scottish friend; “I'm stuck on one, ‘trapped on a desert island, eight letters, starting with M’ “
He said “Marooned”
I replied “Thanks, I'll have a pint of lager then !”
5th December 2022
Plus 3 and dry when driving in.
That was a not a bad weekend..
Top Target won really well at Wetherby on Saturday…
This lovely horse was picked out by John Perriss after he saw him walk past him when he popped in for a coffee at the Tattersalls Cheltenham Sales in April..26K for a cup of coffee is expensive… but 26K for Top Target looks a bargain.
It was our first visit to Wetherby for the season and it has been a lucky racecourse for John and so it proved again .. Top Target was well ridden by Ciaran Gething..
TT was as I mentioned, bought by John, and his previous owners of this former English point to point winner were my godson Ed Bailey and Chris Barber..John had bought recent Bangor hurdle winner Getaweapon off them too.
Down at Chepstow Grave La Klass and Magical Escape both ran with promise..
Grave La Klass needs a third run to qualify for a handicap mark while Magical Escape ran very green (immature) and will improve hugely for the experience..
First Flow probably ran as well as he did last year in yesterdays Peterborough Chase.. It looked a far better race this year and he still looked like going close two from home, but good ground and their speed left him in third place.. No disgrace ..
I just love this horse and it really annoyed me that I could not be there to saddle or support him.. Mat did the honours while I sat at home with a hotwater bottle glued to my back..
Mrs B rightly thinks I am pathetic, after all it was not that long ago she lay in bed with a badly broken neck and here I am moaning like a whimp, incapable of doing anything for myself!!
Honeysuckle beaten in Ireland.. Shame.. It happens..The edge has been taken off any big match between Constitution Hill and Honeysuckle for the moment.. don't forget the great Istabraq was beaten into second in this race by Limestone Lad and still won the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham
England set Pakistan just a few runs.. today will certainly be interesting.. Surely they will be a winner..It has been a good Test match..
There is YET another sale this week.... Friday at Cheltenham.. Tattersalls... Are you looking for a Christmas present.. I could help fill your stocking..!
A good night for English Football.. Now France..
Monday morning and no rain around, but a possibility of frost and snow!! Well snow if you live in Scotland..
I know I said on Friday that more stories would appear over the next few days about the late Hugo Bevan.. This one was in yesterdays Times.
Brough Scott wrote..
A talented artist in his spare time, Hugo once escaped a speeding fine by recognising that the stern faced policewoman in front of him had been the nude model in his life drawing class.
“Oh hello,” Hugo said with his naughtiest smile, “it’s good to see you with your clothes on.”
Many more will come along.. Hugo was a person once met never forgotten..
To finish. Happy birthday to one of our KBRS owners David Ratcliffe
3rd December 2022
Plus 3 and dry when driving in.
David Bass was in to ride out.
The mention of David Bass reminds me that having spent most of the last week in his car my back in bu….red and yesterday I spent most of he day on the floor!.. cars and backs do not go well together..
Visitors this morning.....Second Lot....
Alan James was here second lot to see his KBRS horses Voyburg, Shinobi, Does He Know, Parc d'Amour, Fair Frontieres, Magical Escape, Phantom Getaway and Lets go Amigo.
Rob and Sarah Watson were here to see their KBRS horse Grand Escaparde
Joe Goldring also here to his KBRS horse Let's Go Amigo
Chris and Sam Flavell came for a tour having met Peter at our Syndicate day at Cheltenham Racecourse last month.
Cilla Wills was here third lot to see her KBRS horse Voyburg
Calum Carter and Vanessa Jones were also here to see their new KBRS horse Isle Of Gold.
We have three runnners today..Mat headed North for our first visit of rthe season to Wetherby to saddle Top Target while I hopefully head to Chepstow to saddle Grave La Klass and Magical Escape.. Tomorrow First Flow heads to Huntingdon and for all my thoughts please click here.
The Racing Post did Hugo pround.. there are still plenty of stories to come out..
2nd December 2022
Minus 4 and dry when driving in. Nothing like as foggy as the last few days.
Thank god for Chianti Classico winning at Market Rasen yesterday. What a thoroughly lovely honest horse he is..
CC won his bumper at MR a year ago to the day and we felt after his good win at Chepstow, on his first start over hurdles, that we needed him to learn to settle and race before stepping him up in grade..Yesterday was part of the plan and stage 2 of his hurdling career.. Thrilled for his owners Richard Pilkington and Francis Brooke who sadly neither were able to be there to celebrate..
There was not much else to celebrate about with our other runners..
Gerard Mentor's race was run at such a slow pace that he pulled his way to the front.. a place he does not like being for too long and as a result he finished down the field.. The writing was on the wall after 3 hurdles and we shed no blame on the jockey who frankly really struggled to hold him.. GM will have a break now before returning in April.. Hopefully those who abused on twitter will learn to read races before slatting off about racing being crooked!! Idiots?
Imperial Hurricane is a big baby and looked one when finishing 5th in the novice handicap hurdle.. he has so much to learn and needs to fill his huge frame.. he will, and he will win in time..
The big disappointment of the day was Undercover Lover in the bumper.. We had high hopes, but he was never going.. too many of my bumper horses have run similar races.. Bizarre and frustrating as we can’t be that wrong about their ability.. Something amiss.
It was a long journey home in the fog and then I received a call from Peter Burke to tell me that Hugo Bevan had died that afternoon..
Hugo Bevan was one of racing greatest characters. He was a family friend and for years the most exciting person to come to my parents house when my sister and I were younger.... when he did we as children stayed up as we knew he would cause some sort of trouble.. he was such an amusing, fun person who made everybody laugh and happy in his company. .
When I started to train Hugo became somebody I called to find out about ground conditions on his many racecourses and unlike todays clerks his ground descriptions suited most.. Mostly when the watering system at Worcester broke and flooded parts of the course.. When Jenny Pitman complained he asked her what sort of ground she wanted ? Good replied Mrs P.. well Hugo quipped well it is in places, but you can have every description too.. Mrs P was not amused..
Hugo was fun and always seemed in trouble.. He will be hugely missed.. Hugo wrote a short book..Memoir of a Racing life....A fun easy read but those who knew him really were waiting for the real tales to appear.. There will be many very funny tributes to the great man over the next few days.. and some of those stories that never made the book just might be told..
Dear Carol his long suffering wife wonderfully coped with and adored Hugo.. We all did and we all loved him. RIP Hugo..
Friday morning and a day at home with no runners..
Wandrin Star went to Cheltenham for a schooling morning over their cross country fences with Ciaran Gething aboard..
1st December 2022
0 degrees, foggy and dry when driving in.
November ended quietly as that was not a good day yesterday at Ludlow..
Inflagrante fell and has spent the night at the vets with a very nasty cut on his leg while Arctic Saint I thought or hoped would have run better.. It was a very competitive bumper and loads of winners will come out of this race but AS ran very green and was hampered turning for home......His work mate runs in the bumper at Market Rasen today..
David Bass was in for one lot and then he and I drove to Market Rasen where we have four runners.. Gerard Mentor, Chianti Classico, Imperial Hurricane and Undercover Lover and for my thoughts on all their chances please click here.
Watering at Sandown and Huntingdon in December.. a first? and then we have Cheltenham next week and don’t believe for one second that they will not be doing the same!
If you had any thoughts that the horse sales would be dampened by the world economic problems then think again..Tattersalls this week has carried on where every other sale has led.. upwards..or downwards to Australia where the top lots are heading to carry on their racing.. Australian racing is booming..
It could only happen in America?
A cell phone rings in a locker room, A man answers the phone...
He puts it on speaker
Woman: "Hi honey, it's me. Are you at the club?"
Woman: "I'm at the mall and I just saw this beautiful leather coat and it's only $2,000, can I have it?
Woman: "Oh, and I just stopped by at the Lexus dealership and saw a car I really liked, can I have it?
Man "How much is it?"
Woman: "$90 thousand."
Man: "Well if it's that much I want it with all the features."
Woman: "Of course I will! Oh yeah, one more thing. I just finished talking to Sarah, and the and the house I wanted is back on the market, they're asking $880 thousand for it."
Man: "Ok, make an offer for $900 thousand, if they don't take it offer them an extra $80K if that's what you really want."
Woman: " Thank you so much honey, love you, bye!"
Man: "Love you too, bye."
The man hung up, everyone in the locker room was staring at him in astonishment. The man then calmly looked around and asked "Ok... whose phone is this?"
30th November 2022
Plus 4, foggy and dry when driving in.
Southwell is a good racecourse, although when you have runners in the first and then the last it is a probably not the best place to stay for the duration.
Having travelled early with Norman Carter so that we could be there for the first, we had a long wait for the last and his Samatian. Norman suggested that we all leave after the first and Lady Of The Nights race and he would treat us to a lunch break at Tom Browns.. good thinking?
John and Penny Perriss were there to watch Lady Of The Night uncharacteristically unship David Bass in the first race after half a circuit.. Very annoying as David took her bridle with him when he fell off.. hence LOTN galloped and then cantered around the racecourse for the best part of 3 miles with no head gear to stop her… Thankfully she seemed OK when we finally caught her, so lunch was looking a better idea as a way of drowning sorrows?!
Luckily Tom Browns was on the way home for The Perriss’s.. we returned after lunch to Southwell to watch Normans horse Samatian run a blinder, but to finish 2nd.. Neither Norman or I enjoy that place and frankly the winner, who was running in his first handicap after just two runs, looked a different class..
What a man and what fun I had all those years ago having lunch at his restaurant Langan's with many of my media based owners including John Perriss..David Todd, Craig Pearman and Tony Vickers just to name a few..
David Todd managed to get so much wine down me that I walked across the road when I left and called to see my tailor Mr Hammond and was measured for a suit..…
Thankfully Mr Hammond rang the following morning to say that it was good to see me and probably a pink tweed suit was not really a good idea.. I did not recall ever calling in to see him!!
Yes..Serious fun was had in that restaurant with Richard and his outrageous friends..
Did you watch the football? I did the second half..I am sure you know what happened..
Back to today and David Bass and Ciaran Gething were in to ride out..
I stopped Peter Kerr coming in to video the work this morning as it was thick fog here last night and forecasted to be the same this morning..
29th November 2022
Plus 5, foggy and dry when driving in.
No vet visit today.. This weeks movers and shakers in the BHA handicap charts are..Duke Of Earl down 5 to 84, Galante De Romay down 1 to 96, Gerard Mentor up 9 to 111, Happygolucky up 1 to 152, I Spy A Diva up 4 to 121, Inflagrante down 1 to 103, Moonlighter down 2 to 121, Party Fuzz up 8 to 120, The Edgar Wallace down 2 to 132 and finally Trelawne up 6 to 130.
John Hanmer has died..Aged 82..John was the voice of BBC racing for many years. A real gent who just loved his cricket..
An early start to head off to the races.. Meeting Norman Carter at 9.30
We welcome a new owner of the month.. Steve Jaggard.
Stephen Game sent this over.... all day in the car!!
28th November 2022
Plus 5, foggy and dry when driving in.. Another dry week ahead..The ground is drying shockingly quickly..
I left here at 8.15 on Saturday morning and returned to my office at 8.45 last night.. In between I have shared a car journey with David Bass and Charlie Deutsch.
Newcastle would certainly not be my favourite racecourse, actually if truth be known I would not mind if I never went there again.. Not because of the locals who are complete stars, but because the place is run down, feels tired and unloved.
Happygolucky ran a an absolute blinder to finish 3rd in the Rehearsal Chase.
595 days since Happy last ran and won at Aintree and on Saturday he showed all his old spark and watching him run like he did made us all realise how annoying it was that he was not able to run at Cheltenham 2 weeks ago in the Paddy Power.. He would have gone so close… Ground was the issue then and Eloise Quayle who is Newcastle’s clerk of the course held her nerve and watered before their meeting.. some cried madness, but she was so right and was rewarded with great racing..Balls of steel.. well if she was a man!! Seriously she deserves a huge amount of credit.. and a huge bonus..
After racing we moved on to our hotel.. String Of Horses.. 3 rooms booked and after beating David Bass at pool I felt it wise to retire for the night leaving the two young jockeys to each others company..
Thankfully there were not many folk left in the pub when they decided it would be fun to dress up and take the muskets and rifles off the wall.. History relates that DB sang like a good un and woke up in a room that he had not been booked into.. please note we were the only people staying in the hotel!
Carlisle has to be one of the best chase courses in the country.. but with a shocking inside hurdle track.. They have excellent Directors who make sure owners are so well looked after.. I always enjoy racing there.. Our runner Equus Dreamer ran well to be third.. he went there for soft/heavy ground and frankly it had dried so much it was almost good.. yes a very good run under the circumstances. Eye catcher of the meeting in the RP
At Bangor on Saturday Galante De Romay finished a well beaten third..she needs dropping back in trip..
All in all a good weekend, but without a winner.. all horses fine after, but the drive south was a horror.. North of Worcester onwards took an age.. solid traffic.
Monday morning and bar a few to jump I was on a zoom call all morning..
We jumped Inflagrante, Top Target, Chianti Classico, Captain Rose, Faerie Cutlass, Salt Rock, Imperial Hurricane, General Hubble, Grave La Klass, Imperial Admiral, Isle Of Gold, Lets Go Amigo, Mr Grey Sky, Percy Veering.
No runners today.....Best football commentator
26th November 2022
Plus 6 and dry when driving in..
Wales..What a lovely country..the rain and the barren countryside of Ffos Las is quietly becoming so much more attractive with every visit..
Two winners there yesterday, and a third..Leeks all around and not from the guttering..
Aiden Murphy and I bought Broomfield Present last December at The Yorton Sales but he needed time.. Time changes horses and BP just could go onto be quite useful after this his first start over hurdles. The further the better?
Talking how horses change, Trelawne is no longer the big gangly baby that we saw last season..He should be 3 from 3 but he fluffed his lines last time, but at least he behaved and showed what a decent horse he is capable of being .. He won like a good horse should..A huge horse and home bred, he just could be a star in the making if we can keep his mind on the job…
A big well done to The Real Partnership but especially to Sandra Steer-Fowler who bred this lovely horse.. named after one her husband Martyn's holiday parks..
Moonlighter let the side down by finishing third.. Erratic is the way I would describe his jumping.. He looked all over the winner turning for home, but when under pressure he fluffed his jumping..Laura Collett has tried, as we have.. there just might be a reason as to why he does what he does..
Ffos Las.. The staff there are brilliant.. always smiling and happy and they look after you well.. The winners pavilion is hosted by Kallie and she always holds a bottle of Scotch ready for me.. Just in case I have a reason to pop in..Good girl!!
My BT messaging box was full last night.. people were kindly sending me Text messages.. But..Please send them in furure to my miobile rather than my land line as I cannot down load as to who they are from.
Anorther box, but this one not ticked was how England and Wales played their World Cup matches....Not that I had time to watch either, but they sounded dire.. May the best team win on Tuesday, although one would assume all of Scotland will be rooting for Wales!
Saturday morning.. David Bass and Ciaran Gething were in..
David and I left after first lot to head to Newcastle.. I have over 36 hours in his company!
We welcomed ten guests for a morning on the gallops with breakfast, Andy Fitz, Amanda Fitz, Wayne Oliffe, Lottie Oliffe, Ian Hopson, Dai Kinman, Chris Oaks, Helen Clements, Susan Clarke and Judith Clay.
Garry and Tracy Betley were up third lot to see their KBRS horse Phantom Getaway and hopefully bringing cakes!
We have two runners today and one tomorrow..
David and I are slumming it.. I was keen on a 5 star hotel while David was thinking down the line of a Yurt..I emailed two hotels yesterday for rooms and Yurts.. The Lord Crewe Arms and The String Of Horses.... Only one replied..
Happy days and on that note.. Happy birthdays to Peter Kerr and Phil Andrews..
Have a great weekend and see you bright and early on Monday, god willing..
25th November 2022
Plus 5 and dry when driving in.
I Spy A Diva.. You little gem.. Yesterday at Taunton she made it 3 wins from 3 runs this season and her second at Taunton in recent weeks, and even better..all three races were GBB races.. Top marks all round..One very happy owner breeder in John Perriss..
Mat went there to saddle and bar the fact that somebody thought Mat was John and Penny Perriss's son it was day of plain sailing for him.. Mat might like the idea!?
Kai Lenihan has had a great start to his time here and made it 5 wins from 10.. a 50% he would be pleased to keep?.. Kai probably needs to thank Mick Fitzgerald for all the work they have put in together.. Mick is Kai's jockey coach..
I was at Lingfield.. never a good journey but sadly we were not rewarded with a winner.. Time For Hollie ran well to finish third but looks like 3 miles would be more of her trip next time..
Lingfield have spent a fortune on drainage and it showed as their ground was certainly not heavy.. And they looked after owners very well..My team of owners were very happy even if they did not win..Always a good testament to the racecourse.
Friday and Jack Wright was here to see his KBRS horse Phantom Getaway.
I was away early and off to Wales.. Ffos Las to be precise..I should be an easy journey for a change as Wales are playing Iran at 10am so the roads will be empty!..Is it a national holiday?