19th August 2019
Plus 13 and dry when driving in.
I finally saw some play at Lord’s..
A 5th day is fairly unique nowadays.. Well it was, but then you must not forget that the first day was a total wash out. So really it was the fourth day .. A full house on a Sunday at Lord’s .. Not to be missed.
Johnny Ruck Keene and I took the train from Banbury and enjoyed what can only be described as a brilliant days cricket.. It nearly had everything..
Stokes scoring a stunning century when it looked like we might have a dodgy start.. all delayed due to rain..and then the declaration soon after lunch when Stokes had his runs..
Jofra Archer soon lit up the afternoon session.. This man empties the bars, and not many do that.
He was electric and soon had two wickets and a couple of knock downs .. all reverting stuff.
A given catch when perhaps it should not have, made the last few overs tense, well if you were an Aussie..
Sadly light stopped play and The Australian's held on for a draw; but it was a fabulous day to be at Lord’s. The next three Tests will be interesting.
I bumped into TNDGB early on and predictably he was off the radar as quick as a flash by telling me that he had just seen Steve Smith and had asked the great man how he was feeling.. so so was the answer.. Yes.. I have not nicknamed TNDGB for nothing..
Soon it was announced that the greatest batsman in the world was going to take no further part in the game.. so, so so was right ..?
Johnny I were going to settle down for a quiet lunch in the Harris Garden but then we were collared by TNDGB to join his table which included Marcus Fernandez and Donald Mackenzie who was over from Nashville for a couple of Tests....Mistake..expensive but fun..
Training home to Banbury after a very enjoyable day.
Monday morning and fresh horses.
Ian Dimmer was here second lot to see his KBRP horse Yeavering Belle.
Mat is away for the next three days on a First Aid course.
Cresswell Legend returned to the yard after his holidays..
I saw this in the Times last week..
There are more ashes at Lord’s than the ones in the urn. The Harris Garden there is a popular scattering place for cremated remains.
The MCC permits this outside of the season but friends of a recently deceased member, John Cornett, didn’t wait.
They set out to perform the ritual during the washout on Wednesday, but heightened security was likely to confiscate a suspicious powder.
So, one of the conspirators purchased a large pork pie, scooped out the meat inside and replaced it with the ashes.
A wise selection: as any speaker of cockney rhyming slang knows, pork pies are perfect for deception.
17th August 2019
Plus 13 and dry when driving in.
It was anything but dry yesterday, especially when I finally made it to Lord’s.
No play to watch, which was annoying after such a good morning for England... Never a good way to spend an afternoon, Lord's and no play.. but that was made up by the evenings entertainment.
Trainers J.J O’Neill, Paul Nicholls, Neil Mulholland and I were their trainers there along with their jockeys Richie McLernon, Harry Skelton, Harry Cobden, Bryony Frost and David Bass.
All had either trained or ridden them a winner.. well with a 40% strike rate of runners to winners and 10 of their 11 horses winning they really did have a season to celebrate.
Cherry Jones, who bred and shares Rose To Fame with the Broughton’s was there last night sporting a huge smile..
Nicholas and Cherry won with their home bred filly Game and Set at Newbury yesterday, so Cherry had much to celebrate..
Sadly Rose To Fame failed to make it onto the big screen in last nights film, which showed all the Broughton's winners.
Andy Ash and Freya Trotter were there representing The Racing Manager… Martin Broughton is one of the companies main backers..
Archie was 4th in his pony race at Wolverhampton..9 stone is the racing weight for the ponies which sadly for Archie is impossible.. too tall and 10 stone..But he enjoys his racing.. next step?
David Bass was in this morning looking fresh and well after his late night in town.
We jumped Robin The Raven and Rhosneigr.
We have a quiet weekend with no runners.. We have had very few this runners this summer and only 3 winners. The same as last year..
A woman from New York was driving through a remote part of Arizona when her car broke down.
An American Indian on horseback came along and offered her a ride to a nearby town.
She climbed up behind him on the horse and they rode off.
The ride was uneventful, except that every few minutes the Indian would let out a Ye-e-e-e-h-a-a-a-a!' so loud that it echoed from the surrounding hills and canyon walls.
When they arrived in town, he let her off at the local service station, yelled one final 'Ye-e-e-e-h-a-a-a-a!' and rode off.
"What did you do to get that Indian so excited?" asked the service-station attendant.
"Nothing," the woman answered "I merely sat behind him on the horse, put my arms around his waist, and held onto the saddle horn so I wouldn't fall off."
"Lady," the attendant said, "Indians don't use saddles……………………..."
Have a great weekend and see you on Monday..
16th August 2019
Plus 13 and dry when driving in.
Not sure how dry it is going to remain.. especially as I am heading to Lord’s later.
Tom Bellamy was in for a couple of lots.
David and Frances Ratcliffe plus David's sister Sue were here to see David's KBRP horses Vinndication, Siler Kayf and Arthur's Sixpence.
Archie and his pony headed off early to Wolverhampton pony racing. They had to be there by 10.
Hottest July and looks like we are heading for the wettest August. You have to feel sorry for the local farmers who still have a huge amount of harvest to be cut… The knock on effect of a wet August will be felt later in the year… Mind you reading the papers harvest prices will only be the start.
Tom Siddall finished his teeth rasping yesterday. The point of doing the horses teeth..Tom will be back here fairly regularly as and when other horses return from their pre training.
Norman Carter enjoyed seeing his horse Sunblazer having his photo day. The final photo was of Sunblazer heading up the gallops with Archie on board in full racing kit..
Lord’s, what a day yesterday. Especially for Andrew Strauss. A red day in memory of his wife Ruth and those images of his two boys ringing the famous bell to start play will be remembered for many years.. I was at Lord’s when Andrew made his debut with a century in 2004.
I am heading there in hope, but later I am heading to The National Theatre where the Martin and Jocelyn Broughton are hosting a party on The Deck to celebrate their excellent season of 23 winners. The horse they have here Rose To Fame added two to their total..
There has been an interesting advertising war taking place over the Ashes.
We have a new owner of the month..David Shuttle..Also a cricket fan
I am not going to add a joke today.. I dont need to....Maddy P
15th August 2019
Plus 15 and dry when driving in.
I forgot to mention yesterday that jump racings holidays were over.. Newton Abbot and Worcester racecourses were back in action yesterday.. They raced, unlike Lord’s, where they did not play all day....Weather?
We had supper last night with my sister Moo, her husband Pete and Helen (Taylor) Shaw who was staying. Helen was over from Dubai..
The Milan Girl returned to the yard.. She has been holidaying with Jason Maguire.
Day 2 of the August Tattersalls sales.. Strong trade again.. Day 3 today..
Busy here this morning.
John and Pat Lee were here third lot to see their KBRP horse Does He Know.
Norman Carter was here to see his mare Diamond Gait and also see Sunblazer (now officially retired) who was having his photo taken by Sue Westwood-Ruttledge.
Phil, Bobby, Joe and Gill Andrews called in late morning to see their horses .. Dandy Dan, Duke Of Earl, Mr Grey Sky, Party Fuzz, The Edgar Wallace, Those Tiger Feet and his KBRP horses Arthurs Sixpence, Blazon and Vinndication..
Trainer Harriet Bethell had a terrible accident on her gallops last week and as a result is in intensive care.
Her father William, who has been granted a temporary trainers license, gave a heart wrenching interview with Matt Chapman after Harriet's horse Steel Helmut won on Tuesday night at Lingfield... All our thoughts go out to Harriet and wish her a full recovery..
Happy 20th birthday to Cameron Watt...
14th August 2019
Plus 13 and raining when driving in.
Jockeys David Bass and Ciaran Gething were in this morning to ride out a couple of lots.
We jumped Robin The Raven and Rhosneigr.
Andy and Julie Wilkinson were here for a Morning on the gallops.. They are racing fans who are currently staying on Cheltenham Racecourse for the week.. soaking up the atmosphere?
Talking Cheltenham.. their ground team were here yesterday rebuilding three of my fences in preparation for the coming winters schooling.. They will be back in a couple of weeks time to finish the other two fences.
Today is the start of the Lord’s Ashes Test..
Sadly judging by the weather forecast there might be a huge amount of play today.
Tattersalls August Sales in Ireland saw a top price of 80,000.00 euros. Still strong trade.The sale continues today
I am quoted in the Guardian.. Most of what I am quoted is true.. 'It won’t happen overnight, but I am surprised it is not five days already. I think it’s inevitable,” the bit in italics is not..
Mark Twain also said..Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of 80 and gradually approach 18…If only!
13th August 2019
Plus 10 and dry when driving in.
Chester Williams has joined the team. Son of trainer Nick.
David Bass back from holiday today and will be in tomorrow.
Tom Siddall has started rasping the horses teeth.. pulling a few knowing Tom.. Joking aside it is a very important job.
Graham Potts was in for his Tuesday vet visit
Tattersalls Ireland August sales starts today.. the last chance to buy young unbroken horses
Mark Twain famously said...
Last week, I stated this woman was the ugliest woman I had ever seen.
I have since been visited by her sister, and now wish to withdraw that statement.
12th August 2019
Plus 11 and dry when driving in.
Monday morning and very fresh horses.
Ascot on Saturday was a wet one. They even had to cancel their post racing concert.
It was wet here too, but having said that it was not as windy as predicted.. thankfully. I hate seeing fallen trees.
Michael O Leary has been talking about plans for his most famous horse Tiger Roll.. yet again he wishes the handicapper to compress the weights to allow him to run.. He said that last year too..
Frankly the pocket rocket will win with a few pounds more if he ends up with top weight..Bottom weight was 10.2 last year and this year it could be a few pounds higher..
The way Tiger Roll jumps and loves Aintree he could well emulate Red Rum who won the great race three times; Red Rum carried 12 stone to win the race 1974 when Brian Fletcher rode him..12 stone will never be carried again, thanks to the handicapper…
Eleanor Roosevelt said..
I had a rose named after me and I was very flattered.
But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalogue: - 'No good in a bed, but fine against a wall.'
10th August 2019
Plus 14, windy and drizzling when driving in.
It was not a night for camping. Something Archie and his mates were doing last night in Farmington.
Richard and Georgie Barrow erected a tent for 10 hardy children while the grown ups enjoyed a relaxed supper, and a decent bottle of wine... or two... not sure how they (the children) will feel this morning.
Talking camping Peter Kerr has corrected me .. he is not camping and nor is he in Dorset. Devon.. The only bit I got right there was the D..
Jo Morris was in this morning to ride out two lots and then too his old mate Sunblazer for a hack..
The Shergar Cup is unique among British racedays. the key information.
The six races are limited to ten runners with either two or three horses racing for each team (this balances itself out over the course of the afternoon).
Points are awarded on a 15, 10, 7, 5, 3 basis to the first five horses home (non-runners score 4 points).
Subject to full fields, each jockey has five rides. This is to ensure that in the event of an injury, there is a spare jockey on each team who can assume mounts. The team with the highest total after the sixth race lifts the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup.
The jockey amassing the most individual points will take home an additional £3,000 plus the Alistair Haggis ‘Silver Saddle’ trophy.
All six races are handicaps and all will be run with identical prize money – £60,000 per race.
There are two reserves per race, who can be utilised up to 45 minutes before each contest is run.
No big surprises in the line up of England players for the second Ashes test that starts at Lord’s next week.. Moeen Ali is predictably dropped.
George Burns famously said..
The secret of a good sermon is to have a good beginning and a good ending; and to have the two as close together as possible.
Have a great weekend and see you on Monday.
9th August 2019
Plus 17 and raining when driving in.
It was a very dark get up this morning and on my drive in it rained so hard that my windscreen wipers just could not keep my vision clear..Standing water everywhere.
The forecast suggests that we should batten down the hatches today. Not a good day for riding out..
Tom Bellamy was in to ride out two lots this morning .. Most jockeys are still away on holiday.. Even Peter Kerr is now on holiday.. camping in Dorset.. he might be blown away.. I sincerely hope not.
Maddie, Mat and I are finalising the horses in training brochure for this coming winter season. Like a school report while looking into a crystal ball.
The Racing Post have drawn up an all time jockeys rich list.. interesting reading..
A shaggy dog story..
My parents told me I could name my new pet dog anything I wanted and since I was a mischievous little boy, I decided to name the dog Sex.
It seemed funny at first until you understand all the confusion that this caused me in my later life.
Like the day that I went to the town hall to get a dog license for Sex. The clerk asked me what I wanted. I told him I wanted a license for Sex.
He said, “I’d like to have one, too.”
Then, I said, “You don’t understand. She’s a dog.”
He replied, “Look man, I don’t care how she looks.”
“No no, I’ve had Sex since I was 5!”
He replied, “You must have been an early bloomer.”
When I decided to get married, I told the minister I wanted to have Sex at the wedding. He told me I’d have to wait until after the wedding.
When I protested that Sex had played a big part in my life and that my whole life revolved around Sex, he said he didn’t want to hear about my personal life.
After my wife and I got married, I took the dog with us on the honeymoon. When I checked into the hotel, I told the clerk that I wanted a room for my wife and wanted one for Sex.
She replied, “Sir, every room in the hotel can be used for sex.”
I said, “You don’t understand. Sex keeps me awake at night.”
The clerk said, “Me too!”
When my wife and I separated, we went to court to fight for custody of the dog. When I told the Judge I had Sex before I was married, he grinned and said, “Me too.”
One day my dog Sex and I took a walk and he ran away from me. I spent hours looking for that dog. A policeman came by and asked what I was doing in this alley at midnight. I told him, “I’m looking for Sex!”
My case comes up next Tuesday.
Now that I’ve been thrown in jail, married, divorced and had more trouble with that dog than I ever imagined, I’m in counseling. My psychiatrist asked me what my problem was.
I said, “Sex has left my life. It’s like losing a best friend and I’m so lonely.”
He said, “Look, you and I both know that sex isn’t man’s best friend. Why don’t you go get yourself a dog...”
8th August 2019
Plus 11 and dry when driving in.
Retirement is never easy but last night Sunblazer ran his last race.
Dear Sunny ran to win, but his wind, which has troubled him most of his life, finally caught up with him.
He had a lovely run up the inner and for a second it looked like he was going to play a major part in the race, but then his breathing cut out and Jim Crowley rightly accepted it and let him coast home.
Jim ever the professional, thanked Norman for the ride, but rightly said racing for Sunny was over.
Always sad when the time comes to say stop, but Sunblazer really has been a star for us and especially Norman Carter his owner.
Norman bought Sunny at the July Newmarket Sales in 2015 for £8000.00.
My brief was to try and race at Royal Ascot, York, Chester, Goodwood, Newmarket and have some fun days out with him.. That we did as he ran at all those meetings and although he only won at Newmarket he ran some really good races at all those meetings.. Giving Norman some wonderful and memorable days racing.
Sunny loved the all weather and when the turf season finished Sunny hit the all-weather and that was a huge success. He won 7 races for us on the all-weather
Last night was his last run and although we expected it, you always hope.
He retires from racing now a sound horse and will have a fulfilling life away from the racecourse.. Not sure where yet, but Norman can smile and recall some great days.
Sunblazer ran in a career total of 69 races.. he won 10 (including one hurdle win) and was placed second 8 and third 10 with a career total earnings of £86,453.
It was sad night, but a good one as his fans Daniel Carter, Robert Fanshawe and Peter Kerr were there to say goodbye.
Quentin Bevan was here mid morning to see his horse Fubar. Fubar has had an operation on his back for kissing spines and is currently with Lucy Jackson doing his rehab.
Phil Andrews was also here this morning to see his horses Dandy Dan, Duke Of Earl, Mr Grey Sky, Party Fuzz, The Edgar Wallace, Those Tiger Feet and his KBRP horses Arthurs Sixpence, Blazon and Vinndication..
Lord's later for the T20 blast.. Middlesex v Surrey.
Lillian Carter (mother of US President Jimmy) famously said..’Sometimes when I look at my children, I say to myself ‘Lillian you should have remained a virgin.’’