24th October 2014
Plus 13 and drizzling when driving in. Very mild..
West End ran well for a long way yesterday but eventually the weight in a competitive race took its hold. He finished 4th.
The race was run at a furious pace and when he needed to quicken he could not. As they say.. in the grip of the handicapper..
Gus Levinson, who starts his riding career in Point to Points after Christmas (has to be 16) was in for a couple of lots, as was Tom Bellamy.
Tom looks a happy chappy as his new job is going well; a couple of winners in the week keeps the smile on the face.
Racing headlines again don't meet approval as Philip Fenton has been found guilty of 8 counts of possessing unlicensed animal remedies, including a potent anabolic steroid.
Further on Eve Johnson Houghton was fine £1000 for having morphine in her horses feed.
I feel sorry for Eve as the morphine appears to have come from raw materials used in a mash feed that was mixed for her horse Charlie Wells.
Keith and Liz Ellis were here mid morning to see Liz's Amazing D'Azy.
Tonight we run Sunblazer at Wolverhampton.
Sunblazer, who has not been a success over hurdles, won on his last appearance at Wolverhampton 28 days ago. Up 3lbs and in what looks a warmer contest he will try and complete the hat trick of wins at Wolverhampton. Dougie Costello rides him again.
Nigel Clymow kindly rang to ask what camera I used as he was captivated by my pictures. Thanks Nigel for the compliment. A good camera takes good pictures?
It has been a long time since I watched ..The Wishing Well...it made me laugh...It proves that the old ones are the best.
I wonder how many people will be wishing tonight?
23rd October 2014
Plus 10 and dry when driving in.
Oh how I hate finishing second and yesterday was just so frustrating to finish second with Mollys A Diva; another few yards and she would have had her head in front.
It was good to see her run with enthusiasm and jump so well. Her time with event rider Dan Jocelyn certainly seemed to have helped.
All being well MAD will now step up in trip and possibly fences.
Derrintogher Bliss ran well to finish 3rd. He made a jumping error at the third hurdle which caught his hind legs and he was never really travelling that well after, also the ground was possibly a bit dead for him.
Guy Henderson takes over from Charlie Barnett at Ascot.
Guy is currently Chairman of Wincanton racecourse so this move is certainly rocket propelled.
Guy would have learnt a great deal from his couple of years in charge of his local racecourse and his move to Ascot should be good news. I wish him the best and being a jumping man at heart can only help.
No easy task taking over from Charlie who has transformed Aintree and Ascot into the great racecourse they are. Guy will be a steady pair of hands at the helm.
David Bass was in this morning so we jumped a few..
Agent Fedora, Such A Legend, A Shade Of Bay, By The Boardwalk, Gallery Exhibition, Mrs Peachey, Faerie Reel, Gold Man and Magic Money. Not a good morning for taking photos as it was dark enough and my skills missed most..
One runner for us today at Ludlow.
As usual great prize money and West End will try and wrestle some of it back here..
West End was clobbered by the handicapper for winning at Southwell. His 16lb rise for winning a moderate race has certainly curtailed his chance of winning, although he has been placed every time since which means no respite..Ed Cookson takes 5 off and the ground is in his favour so place chances again?
I have been collecting a few suggestions for names for the Tikkanen gelding.. Not sure Willie Woofter would be appropriate Mike
22nd October 2014
Plus 6 and dry when driving in.
Well I sure know how to bugger up a horses handicap mark?!
Yesterday we ran Crazy Jack, who won a moderate Maiden chase at Towcester with the placed horses getting beaten next time, in a decent looking novice hurdle at Exeter to collect a handicap rating; providing we finished 4th or closer.
That we did by finishing 2nd. On the face of it well done all..
But does honesty pay I wonder, as Crazy Jack ran on his merits, and the favourite ran no sort of race.. where we flattered?
My answer is yes; but will the handicapper think that.. well that answer is probably no.
I sold CJ, who had been sitting on the 'for sale' page here for nearly 5 months, to the 'May We Never Be Found Out Partnership' as a 'fun horse' to go racing; the deal was struck at Royal Ascot in June while having a drink with Kevin, Dermot and Mary Clancy in their box. Stephen Cannon joined in as did RUK's Oli Bell, although he cant remember agreeing!
Two years previously I did the same when I introduced them to the idea of owning The Rainbow Hunter.
TRH waits for next years Crabbies Grand National and will have one run before to protect his handicap mark..
On yesterdays running they should have some fun days out with Crazy Jack.
Harry Topper, Ballyknock Lad, Azure Aware and The Scarlett Woman all popped over to Lambourn early this morning..
It was Harry Topper's last piece of serious work before Wetherby's Charlie Hall Chase on November 1..need rain!
Moving on. Our weekly vet visit a day late..
Norman Carter who sent over..'Following on from Arousal running at Kempton, I see Fanny won at Deauville today and she is by Panis!'
Norman you reminded me that I need to name a horse here by Tikkanen out of Mystical Queen.... Suggestions please..
If you are looking for a horse to name and ready to run in bumpers then the above is ready to go, so please ring.
Alternatively if you fancy trying to win the JCB Hurdle at Cheltenham in March I know of a stunning listed winner and group 2 placed flat horse for sale.. again ring.
Two runners at Worcester for us today.
Derrintogether Bliss ran well when second first time out at Uttoxeter and a repeat performance will be needed to be as close this time. Jason Maguire rides.
Mollys A Diva needs to run well and should do. She has been away for jumping lessons with Dan Jocelyn.. David Bass has his first ride on her.
Students in Rodney Stoneman's advanced Biology class were taking their mid-term exam.
The last question was, 'Name seven advantages of Mother's Milk.
The question was worth 70 points or none at all.
One student, in particular, was hard put to think of seven advantages.
However, he wrote:
1) It is perfect formula for the child.
2) It provides immunity against several diseases.
3) It is always the right temperature.
4) It is inexpensive.
5) It bonds the child to mother, and vice versa.
6) It is always available as needed.
And then the student was stuck.
Finally, in desperation, just before the bell rang indicating the end of the test, he wrote:
7) It comes in two attractive containers and it's high enough off the ground where the cat can't get it.
He got an A.
21st October 2014
Plus 13 and dry when driving in.
The wind was strong but certainly not gale force.. yet..
John and Sue Stanley were down this morning to see their KBRP horse Boolavard King. John and Sue brought Russell and Leslie Fields for a first visit to Thorndale.
The new fixture list was announced yesterday and there are now 1471 race meetings next year; 7 more than this year. There were 1506 in 2010.
Our governing body the National Trainers Federation has announced a deal with Group 1 Credit Management
Bad debts and their consequence for trainers have been in the news regularly this year. The NTF have taken the bull by the horns and asked Group 1 Credit Management to sort a credit control service for trainers.
I slightly preempted the new staff accommodation situation as our hand over date has been put back a week. Luckily I was able to cancel all deliveries in time.
While I am on cancellations, our weekly vet visit has been cancelled for 24 hours.
This weeks movers and shakers in the handicap charts are..Charingworth up 3 to 128, Jimmy The Jetplane down 2 to 118, Up For An Oscar down 2 to 128 and Sunblazer down 2 to 103.
Exeter race today (wind permitting) and we run chaser Crazy Jack in the 2 mile novice hurdle.
Crazy Jack won a 2 mile maiden chase at Towcester in May but he does not qualify for a handicap mark on one run, so he has to run again to collect one. CJ has to finish in the first 4 to qualify for a handicap mark otherwise he will have to run a 3rd time. It will be annoying to finish 5th!
The frustrating thing is that whatever he does (unless of course he wins) he will be rated on his Towcester run anyway.
Not the most interesting blog of the year.. this touching story could so easily sum it all up?
As she sat by him, he whispered to her, his eyes full of tears,
"You know what? You have been with me through all the bad times.
When I got fired, you were there to support me.
When my business failed, you were there.
When I got shot, you were by my side.
When we lost the house, you stayed right here.
When my health started failing, you were still by my side...
You know what Martha?"
"What dear?" she gently asked, smiling as her heart began to fill with warmth.
"I'm beginning to think you're bad luck."
20th October 2014
18th October 2014
Plus 15 and damp when driving in. 5 mm of water landed on us last night.
The ground was as described yesterday at Cheltenham, good and good to soft. It was winter ground.
Supreme Present just needs very fast ground as she struggled on that; Jason accepted it as soon as she came under pressure. Annoying as she has loads of ability but ground for her is a hugely important issue. We will wait for 3 weeks to see if either the mares races in November have faster ground, if not she will have the winter off.
Un Ace fell which was not part of the plan while Up For An Oscar found the ground and the competition too much for him. Charingworth again ran a blinder to finish 2nd. Can you imagine how pleased I was with being 2nd yesterday?
All the horses that ran yesterday are fine this morning.
Busy morning with 8 people for 'A morning on the gallops followed by Breakfast'. Tom Beeby from CD Tours. Tony and Helen Love who bought direct off my web site while Philip Jones brought 4 others from the Yorkshire Racing Club.
Third lot Nicky Van Dijk brought some friends over to see her horse Mrs Peachey. Martyn and Sandra Steer Fowler were here to see Such A Legend and 'Twiggy'; Martyn and Sandra stayed at The Kings Head in Cirencester.
Mandy and John Battershall were here to see Midnight Oscar; MO has won twice for them so far this season.
Iain and Angela Bell and Karen Masters were here to see their KBRP horse Knockanrawley, while Peter and Fiona Woodhall and Tim Richardson who are also part own Knockanrawley were here to see their other horses Mor Brook and Thursdays winner Milord.
The fun of the KBRP is that most had never met before and many of them met up for supper last night and have become good mates.
Peter Kerr who runs my KBRP was here to help out!
Back to Cheltenham today with two runners.
The Drinkymeister who was an English points winner ran well in his bumper at Towcester to finish 4th but had a horrid stepping fall on his only run over hurdles at Bangor. The Drinkymiester runs very much as a confidence booster although he will not disgrace; he is a lovely horse who is waiting to go chasing. David Bass rides.
Ed Cookson rides Jimmy The Jetplane who could run a blinder if he handles the ground, especially after last nights rain. Jimmy went up 13lbs for winning on good ground at Wincanton with Ed on top; taking Ed off would mean an 18lb rise if that makes sense.
No runners tomorrow so a family day with Archie around. Have a good one and see you Monday..
17th October 2014
Plus 13 and dry when driving in.
Such A Legend and Faerie Reel popped over to Lambourn this morning for a gallop and a change of scenery. Mat drove them over and he was met by Paul and Elizabeth Kellar who were there to watch Elizabeth's new horse FR.
Geoff Ellis was here 3rd lot to see his KBRP horse Taras Rainbow canter.
At last Milord finally does it and wins a race...!!!
Luck has never been on his side and yesterday it was as the horse most likely to win made a mistake at the last, and Milord and David Bass landed running; they held on by a diminishing neck..
The noise that greeted him when he arrived back in the winners enclosure suggested that the nearly 2 year wait was worthwhile.
It has been a game of patience and frustration owning Milord and all bar one stuck by him, so well done to his happy band of KBRP owners... Peter Band, Vince Burmingham, Norman Carter, Kit Fleming, James Hill, Mark Hudson, David Price, Tim Richardson, Michael Wilkes and Helen Hibbert. Helen took over her brothers David's share when he died.
Sunblazer needs to go back on the flat. At Uttoxeter Net Work Rouge was impressive until he showed his lack of experience when coming off the bridle; he jumped brilliantly and this huge horse is going to make some chaser in a years time. Kibo broke a blood vessel as badly as I have seen one do so; poor chap was feeling pretty miserable after, but he is fine this morning, as they all are.
Milord was winner number 25 for the season so far..
Cheltenham today with 4 runners.
Supreme Present runs provided the ground is OK.. she needs fast or good ground. Her form is rock solid and this is not the strongest novice hurdle ever. She goes there in great form and if the handicapper was right by suggesting she should be rated 145 then she should win.. he has since seen his mistake and dropped her 10lbs.
Un Ace is a lovely horse who was impressive last season, until he broke a blood vessel at Aintree. He has been working well and we are happy with him. 2 miles is on the sharp side, but whatever he does today, he will improve for the race.
Up For An Oscar is running for place money; he will run better than at Fontwell where he hated the tight course. Ed Cookson loves Cheltenham.
Lastly Charingworth, who is the oldest horse in the yard (11) tries to go one better than last year. The old boy is in cracking form.
Yes a busy day and an exciting day.. on a footnote.. it is 4354 days since my last winner at Cheltenham!!! TFFFN likes to remind me.
We are coming to the end of the week; an important one for Kerry and Bells.
Wedding plans and ideas are strewn all over my office, but the one missing is the photographer..
I suggested to them that they should be very careful who they choose...
16th October 2014
15th October 2014
Plus 10, foggy and drizzling when driving in.
David Bass and Ed Cookson were here for a work and schooling morning.
A Shade Of Bay, Agent Fedora, Azure Aware, Ballyknock Lad, By The Boardwalk, Charingworth, Darna, Derrintogether Bliss, Jimmy The Jetplane, Magic Money, Milord, Mollys A Diva, Kibo, Premier Portrait, Net Work Rouge, Mrs Peachey, The Drinkymeister and Un Ace over hurdles or fences..
Colin Stewart who is a member of our KBRPs was here 3rd lot to see his horses Mor Brook canter and Sunblazer jump a hurdle.
Gavin James had to cancel this mornings planned photography lesson; probably a good thing as it was not easy seeing anything early.
Watching A Shade Of Bay jumping this morning reminded me that we still have 4 shares left in The Have Fun Racing Partnership who lease ASOB.
If you have ever fancied becoming involved in racehorse ownership, but perhaps have been daunted by the cost, then this is your ideal opportunity to become an owner without the cost.
There are a total of 15 shares in this lovely mare, who has won and been placed over hurdles, at a one off (all in) monthly cost of £150, plus a £75 joining fee. There are no hidden costs and the lease runs from NOW to the end of March 2016
THFRP was designed so that you can dip your toe into Racehorse Ownership and enjoy all the benefits of full ownership. Weekly emails, visits to the yard and badges on race-days.. what more do you want. It will be fun.
One runner at Wetherby where they are still watering!
Gaelic Myth won a bumper at Ludlow on his only start and todays starts his hurdle career at 4.35.
This looks very competitive on paper and he will be a decent prospect if he wins this. GM will not disgrace himself, especially being ridden by Jason Maguire.
This one is for Kerry Maxwell, my PA..
They stood at the altar,waiting to be married. The bride to be looked down and saw a set of golf clubs beside her new husbands feet.
'What on earth are you doing with those golf clubs?' she whispered.
'Well,' he said, 'This won't take all afternoon,will it?'
14th October 2014
Plus 9 and raining when driving in. We had a very wet day yesterday.. 12 mm..
Every jockey knows he has to have a fall (1 in 10 rides) and Jason had two crunchers yesterday at Sedgefield. When I spoke to him last night, to see how he was, Jason just said he was fine but needed to get them out of the way!
Busy morning here on the entertainment front.
David and Irene Dando and Richard and Silvia Francombe were here second lot for 'a morning on the gallops followed by breakfast'.. Bought at charity auction.
Third lot Robert and Diane Green plus 6 friends were here for 'a morning on the gallops' watching third lot, again purchased at a charity auction... we are very charitable here?
We worked Un Ace and Supreme Present. Both are likely to be heading to Cheltenham this weekend, although top of the ground SP's chances look like being washed away..
Harry Topper and Ballyknock Lad slipped off to Lambourn; Jason Maguire and Tom Bellamy did the honours.
We are supposed to have two runners at Huntingdon later but that has changed as West End wants good ground and Network Rouge won his English Point to Point on fast ground. Huntingdon is now on the heavy side. They stay at home.
Rain is needed but when racecourses water like fury over the summer it does not take long to change the ground. That is the dilemma facing racecourses at this time of year.
Ascot's big Qipco Champions day on Saturday is going to struggle with big names falling by the wayside. Good flat horse don't like bottomless ground, whatever the prize money.. Reputations and values can be ruined..
Graham Potts our vet was in for his weekly visit and talking weekly this week the handicapper has changed a few horses ratings...Mrs Peachey went up 3lbs to 128 and Midnight Oscar went down 1 to 127
111 million Euro Lottery tonight... Dreams..
A woman bursts through the front door and says, 'Pack your bags darling. I just won the lottery!'
And the husband says, 'Great! Should I pack for the beach or the mountains?'
She says, 'I don't give a stuff. Just go to buggery!'