10th December 2013
Plus 7 and dry when driving in.
Watering has started a Cheltenham and now they look like watering at Kempton for their big Boxing Day meeting. Funny weather we are having?
Nick Scholfield was in for one lot on his way to Uttoxeter. We jumped Midnight Oscar and Amazing D'Azy.
Elisabeth Parker-Jervis called in third lot to see her horse Gallery Exhibition. Elisabeth brought along Belinda Carruthers for a first time viewing of Thorndale.
Graham Potts our vet was in for some scopes this morning; yes it is Tuesday and it is his weekly visit. Looking forward to the day when every one is clean.. They are getting there.
It looks like the Weatherby Family are taking over racing.
Roger has now added another notch to his bow as he has been appointed Senior Steward to the Jockey Club as from July 2014.
To take the family connection further his sister Clare is married to Aintree and Haydock Chairman Peter Daresbury. Some racing family dynasty?
We have a couple of runners at Uttoxeter today.
A Shade Of Bay runs in her first novice hurdle. It looks a mighty competitive race and one, on form, she cannot win. A good round of jumping and 4th place is what I would like to see.
Later in the afternoon we run Premier Portrait. Yes he is one of the famous three (Portrait Gallery). It is his first run in a handicap so it will be interesting to see how he gets on. His last run was at Towcester where he finished 4th behind AP McCoys 4000 winner.. We will always remember that run.
Premier Portrait should go well and be placed. Jason Maguire rides both.
This weeks movers and shakers in the handicap charts are.. Agent Fedora down 3 to 86, Milord down 1 to 124, Savant Bleu down 2 to 125 while West End goes down 2 to 101.
The handicapper has confirmed what we have seen on the racecourse..
9th December 2013
Plus 7 and dry when driving in.
We are forecasted a dry week and Cheltenham look like watering for this weekends meeting, now that really is a bit odd for December?
There was a good happy crowd at Sandown on Saturday; it felt busy and people were happily wearing cloths that suited the weather without being stopped.
Mrs Peachey ran her customary good race to finish 4th; a mistake 2 from home cost her certainly 3rd place. Milord ran to form and was beaten about 9 lengths to finish 8th; we had hoped for better but..
Jockey Club Racecourse have reinstated the breeders names on their racecards but on a big Saturday when other meetings were being shown on the big screens it would have been hugely helpful if their racecards had shown who we were watching.
I asked 4 people who the horse was challenging Baby Run over the National fences but none had a paper.
Come on JCR you can still improve by putting other meetings in your cards. It is called being user friendly?
Richard Mordan was here 2nd lot to see Early Bonnet. Richard is a share holder in the HFRP.
Ashley Edge brought 53 odd students from RAU here for third lot. They come annually as part of their education? A tour of the yard and a walk up the gallops etc. All very educational.
Talking annual visits.. Mervyn Harman from Weatherbys was down for his annual chat; Mervyn is my bank manager.
Bloody glad I have not paid a fortune to go out to watch England play so badly..Could it be whitewash? Looking most likely.
Dave Durber must be "deadly" at Scrabble..
PRESBYTERIAN: When you rearrange the letters: BEST IN PRAYER
ASTRONOMER: When you rearrange the letters:MOON STARER
DESPERATION: When you rearrange the letters:A ROPE ENDS IT
THE EYES: When you rearrange the letters: THEY SEE
GEORGE BUSH: When you rearrange the letters: HE BUGS GORE
THE MORSE CODE: When you rearrange the letters: HERE COME DOTS
DORMITORY: When you rearrange the letters: DIRTY ROOM
SLOT MACHINES:When you rearrange the letters: CASH LOST IN ME
ANIMOSITY: When you rearrange the letters: IS NO AMITY
ELECTION RESULTS: When you rearrange the letters: LIES - LET'S RECOUNT
SNOOZE ALARMS: When you rearrange the letters: ALAS! NO MORE Z 'S
A DECIMAL POINT: When you rearrange the letters: I'M A DOT IN PLACE
THE EARTHQUAKES:When you rearrange the letters: THAT QUEER SHAKE
ELEVEN PLUS TWO: When you rearrange the letters: TWELVE PLUS ONE
AND FOR THE GRAND FINALE:
MOTHER-IN-LAW: When you rearrange the letters: WOMAN HITLER
7th December 2013
Plus 7 and dry when driving in.
Dry it certainly was at Sandown yesterday and having walked the course I decided to let Harry Topper take his chance in what looked a very trappy 3 horse race.
We needed to find out whether he could go the speed of a decent 3 miler on good ground over stiff fences.
It was something we had to find out and sadly, as we half expected, he just was not fast enough or a slick enough jumper to cope. It was no disgrace but it does mean that we now have to concentrate on soft ground races.
Jason was happy that he jumped well although it might not have looked that way to some. Bubble burst..? No.. deflated but certainly not burst.
Savant Bleu showed that he is coming back to himself and with a bit of help from the handicapper he will be back in the winners enclosure. Kibo sadly coughed after his race which shows that all the tests run don't always come right.
My in box was full of rude emails about HT's performance which was disappointing.
Some were rude about the trainer, rather than horse, which is something I can take.
I answered them all, although I might still disagree with what some said, it made interesting banter..
One suggestion was that I should run HT in the Long Walk hurdle rather than fences at Sandown. One said I should have run at Aintree instead or take him to France where the fences are easier. So it went on.
Alan, Daniel and Leo Bell were here for a morning on the gallops booked through CD Tours.
Iain and Angela Bell called in to see Knockanrawley and Silver Eagle while John and Mandy Battershall called in to see Midnight Oscar and Wrestow Lady.
Jonathan Ruck Keene who stayed with us last night made his first visit to Thorndale second lot.
None to work this morning. Ed Cookson riding out again as was Alexia Buckwell. Lex has an entry in the Charity race at Cheltenham and she will be riding out here over the coming months.
Back to Sandown today with Milord and Mrs Peachey. Both have tough tasks.
Mrs P's form is top notch but she has gone up in the weights for not running, so carrying top weight of 11.12 for this mare just could be too much although Tom Bellamy's 7lbs will certainly help.
Milord ran a blinder at Ascot last time and perhaps should have won; he will need to reproduce that and more to win this. He is certainly capable of doing that.
Cricket.. what a shambles!
6th December 2013
Plus 1 and dry when driving in.
Not a good day at Leicester yesterday. I have not been there for a while and yesterday made me realise I will be avoiding it in future, if I have the chance.
I did not think it was possible to find a course that was actually worse that Worcester but yesterdays visit to Leicester confirmed them, in my opinion, as the worse racecourse in the country.
The owners and trainers bar was the smallest room on the racecourse; I know they probably had less people in attendance than the sparse crowd that appear on the all weather, but at least try and look after those who are brave enough to come and support their horses.
£9.50 for a sandwich.. yes it was hand made but? At least for a fiver you could have the best beef roll out side the main grandstand.. That is the one that is not falling down.
Dire stuff made worse by the traffic and trying to find the place if you have never been before.. Yes you guessed it my horses did not run that well either.
Not sure how they have the audacity to charge people to come in. Rumour has it that they are going to add the colours (in colour) to their racecards for 2014; and on that awe inspiring note.. Lets have a call for free entry?
Gerard and Nicky Clinton called in during evening stables last night to see Savant Bleu and meet their new horse Gallery Exhibition
Nicholas and Cherry Jones called over last night to watch a replay of their horse Twelves Roses race at Newbury. A light supper accompanied their visit.
Ed Cookson was back riding out this morning; so pleased to see his smiling face again. We have missed Ed.
Tom Bellamy was in to school Mrs Peachey; Tom might be riding her tomorrow at Sandown. Harry Bannister was in for a couple of lots. Harry is opposition at Sandown.
Norman Carter (Mr Cornwall) was here second lot to see his horses Silver Eagle, Milord and The Kayf Tara Filly.
Karen Master was in to see Knockanrawley.
Graham Potts our vet was around most of the morning scoping all the horses that have now finished their course of anti biotics. If they scope clean then we can start upping their work again next week.
A big day for Harry Topper at Sandown. Only 3 runners and all are weighted to be level. I am going early to walk the course as I am worried that the ground might be too fast for him.. Any good to firm will be too fast.
Savant Bleu comes back from a disappointing run at Wincanton and has place chances while at Exeter Kibo could well be placed in the junior bumper.. It looks competitive.
Shall we talk cricket for second.. Dire stuff, Australia very much in the driving seat and Mitchell Johnson on fire.. He was not like this when over here last summer.
Anybody receiving betting information from a woman called Anna please don't listen; apparently she says she has two horses here and no she does not.. Be warned.
A legend has died. Nelson Mandela was just somebody very special. What a man.
5th December 2013
Plus 4 and dry when driving in.
Not a good night as too much time was spent trying to listen to the cricket. It sounded good for a while but then the Aussies have crept ahead after tea.
London was busy as was lunch at Goodmans. Thanks Ian
Charingworth found the track at Ludlow far too tight for him and could never really get into the rhythm that he did at Cheltenham; he finished 3rd although he looked like the winner turning for home when crashing through the third last. That put paid to his chances.. At least he showed that he had retained the form of his first run which was encouraging.
Thursday so a day around the farm for most of the horses. So dark first lot that I could not see them.
I am driving a horsebox to Leicester where we have three runners
Points Of View is our first runner and on form he has no chance, but he seems in great heart for a change and it would not be a total surprise to see him shock a few.
Agent Fedora runs in her first handicap and again it would be no surprise to see her run into a place. She will enjoy the ground today as it was dreadful at Huntingdon when she last ran.
West End now handicapped and straight over fences and should go close.
Sam Thomas rides the first two and Nick Scholfield the last one.
The Christmas cards have started to arrive and as always about the first to arrive is the much anticipated one from Nick Barham. Nick lives in about 5 different countries and the family photo reveals how young he still looks; thanks Nick one day I will find time to pass your door although not sure which country to start off in.
First Christmas Joke as sent in by Jan Evans
Three men died on Christmas Eve and were met by Saint Peter at the pearly gates.
'In honour of this holy season' Saint Peter said, 'You must each possess something that symbolizes Christmas to get into heaven'.
The Englishman fumbled through his pockets and pulled out a lighter. He flicked it on. 'It's a candle', he said.
'You may pass through the pearly gates' Saint Peter said.
The Scotsman reached into his pocket and pulled out a set of keys. He shook them and said, 'They're bells.'
Saint Peter said 'You may pass through the pearly gates'.
The Irishman started searching desperately through his pockets and finally pulled out a pair of women's panties.
The paddy replied, 'These are Carols.'
And So The Christmas Season
4th December 2013
Plus 7 and dry when driving in; we could do with a drop as they say.
Nick Scholfield was in for a couple of lots this morning, as was Freddie Mitchell.
Freddie is an amateur based with NJH and was down to ride and jump Savant Bleu.. They might meet again on Friday at Sandown.
Only A Shade Of Bay, Amazing D'Azy, Premier Portrait, Max Bygraves and Patsy's Castle worked this morning; all the rest cantered.
We jumped A Shade Of Bay, Amazing D'Azy, Premier Portrait, Savant Bleu, Bishophill Jack and West End.
I headed to London after second lot for my annual lunch with my accountant Ian Hewitt. One of us will buy the other lunch depending on how the accounts look.
While I am in London Charingworth will hopefully strutt his stuff at Ludlow.
The Boyne Cup is a £20,000.00 race which again shows you what a great rcaecourse Ludlow is.. They try so hard and we need to support.
I won this race two years ago with Midnight Haze and would love to win it again.
Charingworth never showed any consistancy when running his second race for his previous trainer so I am not sure what to expect; he certainly seems and looks well and if he repeats his recent Cheltenham run then he will go close.
Sam Thomas rides as amateur Harry Bannister who rode him at Cheltenham is banned for being a naughty boy.. Tut Tut?
London also hosted a bit of Christmas shopping.
The following shopping mistake sent over by Norman Carter (Mr Cornwall) has made me laugh so many times in the past that I thought you too should have the chance to read it and laugh.. you like me have probably heard it before... so what..
A young man called Nick wanted to buy his new girlfriend a Christmas present.
As they hadn't been seeing each other for very long he decided, after careful consideration, that a pair of gloves would strike the right note, not too intimate but yet thoughtful and considerate.
He went with his girlfriend’s sister to Harrods and bought a dainty Pair of white fur lined gloves.
Whilst in the ladies clothing department the sister purchased a pair of knickers for herself at the same time.
During the wrapping the shop assistant mixed up the two items.
The Sister took away the package containing the gloves and Nick got the knickers.
Without checking Nick sealed the package and sent it to his new girlfriend.
He wrote in the card that accompanied the package the following:
I chose these because I've noticed that you are not wearing any when we go out in the evenings.
If it had not been for your sister I would have chosen the long ones with buttons, but she wears shorter ones which are easier to remove.
I appreciate that these are a very delicate shade, but the lady I bought them from showed me the pair she had been wearing for the past three weeks and they were hardly soiled at all.
I had her try yours on for me and she looked really smart in them, even though they were a little bit tight on her.
She also said that the pair rubs her ring which helps keep it clean and shiny. In fact she hasn’t needed to clean it since she began wearing them.
I wish I was there to put them on for you the first time, as no doubt many other hands will touch them before I have a chance to see you again.
When you take them off remember to blow into them a little bit because they will be naturally a little damp from wearing.
Just think how many times my lips will kiss them during the coming year.
I hope you will wear them for me on Friday night.
All my love
Before you go..Kim Bailey Racing Partnerships are now syndicating a new and exciting horse being aimed at Cheltenham in March.. Click here for more details...
3rd December 2013
Plus 5 and dry when driving in.
Headlines like 'Sprinter's Tingle run in balance' give you an idea that however hard trainers prepare a horse for a certain date it does not always go to plan.
We like Nicky Henderson, test horses before they run, especially when you are worried about the general well being of the yard. Sprinter Scare's trackea wash figures did not add up.. a warning sign?
Harry Topper was tested too yesterday and his figures were OK,.. which if you are cynical does not mean that he will be fine on Friday!
Talking tests we normal have a visit from my vet today but I have delayed him until the end of the week.
We need to test all the horses who have been coughing and have had dirty scopes.
They have all finished their courses of treatment and are back cantering. I want to give them a few extra days before I test them, which incidentally also helps the owners pockets.
Sam Thomas was in for a couple of lost this morning and we worked Milord and Kibo; we also jumped Agent Fedora, West End, Bishophill Jack, Milord and A Shade Of Bay.
David Board and Janet Forsey called in third lot to see Devils Paintbrush.
Jeremy Ker sent this little story over...
I was a very happy person. My wonderful girlfriend and I had been dating for over a year, and so we decided to get married. There was only one little thing getting to me...It was my fiance's beautiful younger sister.
My prospective sister-in-law was twenty-two, wore very tight miniskirts, and generally was bra-less.
She would regularly bend down when she was near me, and I always got more than a pleasant view. It had to be deliberate. She never did it when she was near anyone else.
One day her "little" sister called and asked me to come over to check the wedding invitations. She was alone when I arrived, and she whispered to me that she had feelings and desires for me that she couldn't overcome.
She told me that she wanted to make love to me just once before I got married and committed my life to her sister. Well, I was in total shock, and couldn't say a word.
She said, "I'm going upstairs to my bedroom, and if you want one last wild fling, just come up and get me."
I was stunned and frozen in shock as I watched her go up the stairs. I stood there for a moment, then turned and made a beeline straight to the front door. I opened the door, and headed straight towards my car.
Lo and behold, my entire future family was standing outside, all clapping!
With tears in his eyes, my future father-in-law hugged me and said, "We are very happy that you have passed our little test. We couldn't ask for better man for our daughter. Welcome to the family."
So the moral of this story is: Always keep your condoms in your car
This weeks movers and shakers in the handicap charts are...Bishophill Jack down 4 to 101 Twelve Roses down 3 to 130, Mrs Peachey goes up 3 to 130 while La Belle Sauvage enters at 98
2nd December 2013
30th November 2013
Plus 4 and dry when driving in.
Newbury felt cold but then anything would have felt cold yesterday. My conversational skills were not good as my voice had left me.
It was one of those days.. Ballywatt ran his customary good race to finish 3rd and Twelve Roses did likewise to finish 4th; TR looked all over the winner 2 from home and in my opinion just did not stay 3 miles. He will in time but it found him out yesterday.
It was cold enough for Ballywatt's owner Virginia Johnson to wear a smart new hat; she hoped it was going to be a lucky one. Ballywatt has yet to win for her but his place record is nearly the best in the country. I fear Virginia might be getting through several new hats waiting for that lucky one? It looked very smart Virginia.
My team of owners for Twelve Roses left happy enough. TR has come along way since winning a moderate maiden hurdle in May and the way he is improving there will several options for Cheltenham in March for him.
I failed to buy a new horse at the DBS Newbury sales; annoying but again prices were astronomical. Top price was £450,000.00 for a grade 3 French hurdler.
Sue Tagg and Mel Pyman were here second lot to see their horses Savant Bleu and Trumix.
We worked a few this morning and they were....
Savant Bleu, Mrs Peachey, Charingworth, Premier Portrait, Agent Fedora and Jimmy The Jetplane. All the rest cantered
Not ideal but it seemed silly to run one today and one tomorrow when we know one will need the experience.
Silver Eagle is a worthy favourite if you took his last run away from his form figures.
Silver Eagle hated the soft ground at Cheltenham so today's ground should suit as should the course. Sam Thomas retains the ride.
Our other runner is Irish point o point winner Knockanrawley. KAR is a big chaser and hurdling is not going to be his forte but he needs to get some racecourse experience under his belt. Tom Bellamy rides.
We have no runners over the next couple of days so Clare and I heading up North after racing at Towcester to stay with Clare's parents; sadly the fishing season is over.
Racings latest PR disaster happened at Newbury when their dress code made the gate men even more officious than normal.
This was highlighted by one stopping a winning owner, who was carrying a trophy home to the car, from entering the smart area? Not sure how smart this area was.. especially when they were heading home via the car park during the last race.
I was at my Doctors yesterday when this women came running out of the surgery screaming her head off. Fortunately a nice nurse managed to calm her down enough to find out what had upset her so much... "It's the doctor " she said tearfully, he has "just told me I'm pregnant"!
The nurse quickly went back into the surgery to challenge the doctor. "Doctor" she asked "how on earth could you tell an 85 year old lady she is pregnant, that's totally unacceptable, shame on you"
Not even looking, the doctor continued writing quietly and barely looking up he said; " does she still have the Hic-ups"
29th November 2013
Plus 8 and dry when driving in.
I am not sure if Mat my head lad saw the papers when picking his up from the Andoversford Garage but the front pages of the Daily Express would have not cheered him up.
Michael Wilkes called in first lot to see the horses on the gallops. Michael, who is heading to Newbury, has shares in Milord, Un Ace and Devils Paintbrush
Yesterdays runners were mixed.
La Belle Sauvage ran better than expected to finish 5th while Magic Money ran worse than expected and pulled up.
I am heading to Newbury today with two runners.
Ballywatt was 2nd in this race last year and again he should be placed.
Tom Bellamy takes over the ride today as poor Ed Cookson is still sidelined.
I hope Tom can produce the miracle needed, but if he does we will never hear the end of it in my office. Thankfully it is Friday.
Half an hour later Twelve Roses takes on 3 miles for the first time in a very competitive handicap hurdle.
Sam T-D rides as Jason is right up North.
TR's form is good and he must have an outstanding chance. All his owners are going bar one. Nicholas and Cherry Jones are in Sydney and will be watching on their ipad..
There is a sale after racing tonight which I am attending.
It is going to feel a long day; razor blades still being eaten and my voice has gone.. peaceful for some?
The Robot sent over by Jeremy Ker
A father buys a lie detector robot that slaps people when they lie.