31st October 2014
Plus 14 and dry when driving in.
Halloween and Mrs B's birthday..
Tom Bellamy was in for a couple of lots this morning. David Bass was in later to give Sundays Huntingdon runner Un Ace a jump over fences.
Tom jumped Gallery Exhibition over the fences just in case he ends up riding him at Warwick next week in the boys handicap chase at Warwick.
Tim and Hilary Stevenson were here for a Charity 'morning on the gallops and breakfast'. Bought At Newmarket on their Alzheimers Research charity day; or rather they were pushed into it as they sat next to me at lunch.
Yesterdays runner Gold Man finished very distressed and was beaten after 3 hurdles. Something amiss and scope showed he was suffering from what Mrs B is..
Uttoxeter today with 5.
Faerie Reel shows plenty at home but will appreciate a longer trip and possibly softer ground. This is a hugely competitive mares maiden hurdle which shows how good these races have become. FR won 3 on the flat in France and has a flat rating of 81; one to watch.
Grand March showed bits of form last winter and is a stronger horse this time around. GM is an orphan.. He will not disgrace.
Magic Money and A Shade Of Bay run in the same race. I hate running two in the same race but needs must.
Jason rides MM and Ed Cookson rides ASOB. You can't separate the two at home and both with be doing their best to beat the other.. Which one will finish in front I wonder.
Our last runner is Viking Ridge. VR fell last time and was never going; he won on his first start at Huntingdon and I believe this horse will run a blinder today with SP's on his head. VR heads off pointing after today whatever.
I often wonder how long it takes to make a succesful video.. How many 'takes' did this one have I wonder. Click here to watch
30th October 2014
Plus 14 and dry when driving in.
Picking up my papers at 5.30 this morning it was barmy and warm but then I looked in the mirror and saw the headlines 'coldest winter for 100 years.'.
We don't need that, although my staff will find their new accommodation very warm as the temperature gauge is set at 20 degrees 24/7. Underfloor heating is very spoiling?
Talking papers, Alan Lee in the Times has headlined in todays racing section on the fact that Harry Topper is unlikely to make Saturday's Charlie Hall due to weather. HT is entered in the Hennessey and will be in the Welsh National and any race where we might find soft ground... not easy..
Jason Maguire was seen at his best on Premier Portrait.
PP traded at 1000/1 jumping the last and got up to win by a neck. It was the ideal race for PP and a very welcome winner for Penny Perriss, who along with her husband John are our biggest supporters.
Penny's other horse The Scarlett Woman ran a blinder and a race full of promise in the mares bumper; she finished a fast finishing and eye catching 4th.
Agent Fedora ran the best race for a while and should be winning soon.
Lucky Bin Racing's Bruce Robbins and Mike Campbell might not have made the trip to Taunton but they would have enjoyed watching Supreme Present win comfortably.
SP was rightly odds on and David Bass really had no worries.
It was good to see her bounce back. SP who has now won 6 of her 14 starts, has to have fast ground; her very happy breeder and part owner Robert Chugg was on hand to collect the trophy.
West End was 2nd again. AP McCoy apologised for ruining WE's handicap ratings by winning at Southwell by too far.. The handicapper will not relent while we keep doing our best!
A good day at the office spoilt by bad news when arriving home..The vet had been in with his scanner.
Thursday is our easy day for the horses.
One runner today at Stratford.
Clive Washbourn's Gold Man won his only Irish point to point; he has won his only start in a bumper at Towcester and today he runs in his first hurdle race.. favourite in the racing post to win...
Virginia Johnson will I am sure be reading this... Good morning Virginia sorry to hear you are in hospital. You will be up in no time and looking forward to seeing you here again.
This might amuse you. It is one of the best ever car adverts...
29th October 2014
Plus 10 and dry when driving in.
Trying to buy horses in Newmarket was certainly not easy. I came home with just the one. It was hot temperature wise and certainly was price wise.
Nick, Caroline and Edward August and Peggy Boddington were here for a charity 'morning on the gallops and breakfast'
Rowland Fox and Greenaways called in to see their horse Fizzy Dancer
Jason Maguire and David Bass were in for a couple of lots this morning.
We jumped a few and they were A Shade Of Bay, By The Boardwalk, Un Ace, Gold Man, Kibo, Midnight Oscar, Such A Legend and Viking Ridge.
Our two runners at Ffos Las ran respectably yesterday although both found the ground possibly softer than they wanted and both will improve.
I mention ground at FL; it is a new course, new ground and the soil has not bedded in so you get no help or bounce from the surface....you would from courses that have been around for a while. It will in time.
We have 5 runners this afternoon at two meetings.
Mat heads down to Taunton with Supreme Present and West End.
SP will have her preferred ground and on ratings she should go close. SP hated the watered ground at Cheltenham last time (not Chepstow as they say in the Racing Post). We had hoped to run her at Wetherby in the OLBG Mares listed race on Saturday but the ground will be similar to what Cheltenham was so frankly not ideal.
West End comes out quickly after finishing 4th at Ludlow. No significant handicap drop (one pound) for being beaten in his last few runs so we try again on his preferred ground. It might come too quick for him but holidays are not far away for him.
I am heading to Worcester for their last meeting of the year.
Premier Portrait tackles fences for the first time. This ex Irish point winner will love fences and should run well in what look a competitive chase.
The Scarlett Woman was weak and backward last season and the summer has certainly helped her.
Agent Fedora has had a wind operation since her last run. If that has helped you could see a big difference.
The ground at Wetherby is not looking softer enough for Harry Topper. It is currently watered good ground with some rain around.. Possibly not enough. HT will have to wait for another day sadly.
If you are bored and want to watch my interview with Tom Stanley on Racing UK then Click here to watch..You might be able to but probably only if you subscribe to Racing UK!!
We take over the new staff accommodation today. All the electrical goods, Beds and furniture appear today.
I heard a rumour that Cadbury is bringing out an oriental chocolate bar. Could be a Chinese Wispa.
That was dreadful..
28th October 2014
27th October 2014
Plus 12 and dry when driving in.
Dry it was yesterday and dry enough that we did not even send By The Boardwalk to Wincanton; their ground firmed up to good to firm and having been pretty fast only a week ago it was never going to suit a big horse like BTB, especially when they missed Fridays forecasted rain.
The Cotswold Team Chase took place here yesterday and with no racing we were able to go and support my daughter Pandora who was performing on her ex racehorse Offshore Account.
The Autovillage sponsored event was hugely popular with many racing folk around. Alan King and I both sponsored fences.
Mat Nicholls, my head lad and right hand man had a rare weekend away which was spent with his family at the Sherwood Forest Center Parc..Mat was most impressed..
The Racing Post Sunday pull out was well worth reading. The article on Joe Mercer was a cracker.
Back to today.
Georgie Mole, Richard Johnson, Serena Tyler, Simon Tyler, Memphis Tyler were here for a charity morning on the gallops and breakfast as were Peter Noyes and Jane Davidson.
Norman Carter was here third lot to see his horse Rhianna and the KBRP horses Milord, Sunblazer, Mor Brook, Silver Eagle and Taras Rainbow
The Newmarket Tattersalls Horses In Training Sales starts today.
I will be hoping to find a 3 year old off the flat to go hurdling.
The HIT sale is never easy as you are competing with the foreign market.. Talking foreign, Able Deputy won in America on Saturday.
Emma Higgins sent over this one.
Shades of Gray
He was in ecstasy, with a huge smile on his face, as his wife moved forwards then backwards, forward then backwards, again and again.
Back and forth, back and forth, in and out, a little to the right, a little to the left, she could feel the sweat on her forehead, between her breasts, trickling down the small of her back, she was getting near to the end. Her heart was pounding, her face was flushed, she moaned, softly at first, then began to groan.
Finally, totally exhausted, she let out an almighty scream and shouted,
"OK, OK, I can't parallel park. You do it, you asshole."
25th October 2014
Plus 5 and dry when driving in.
Wolverhampton last night did not go as planned. They crawled and then sprinted, Sunblazer came right around the outside and that was about that..
Busy morning working horses. Ed Cookson in..
Kerry Pedley, Laura Winter and Gwyn and Cheryl Williams were here for 'a morning on the gallops followed by breakfast' as booked through CDT.
David and Carol Crompton, Roy Izzy and Becky Tozer and John and Veronica Full were here 3rd lot to see their HFRP horse A Shade Of Bay work.
Interestingly John and Veronica Full came here early this season on a CDT morning and so enjoyed their visit that they became involved.
We have one runner tomorrow at Wincanton.
By The Boardwalk, who is a good ground horse by Presenting tackles fences for the first time. BTB spent time with Dan Jocelyn (like Mollys A Diva) to help his jumping and tomorrows race will be his first big test.
BTB has some good form over hurdles and a repeat of his Ascot run would put him right there.
A woman was sure that her husband was cheating on her, and having an affair with the Maid.
So she laid down a trap.
One evening she suddenly sent the maid home for the weekend & didn't tell the husband.
That night when they went to bed, the husband gave the old story: "Excuse me my dear, my stomach aches", and went to the bathroom.
The wife promptly went into the Maid's bed. She switched the lights off. When he came in silently, he wasted no time or words but had his way with her...
When he finished and was still panting, the wife said: "You didn't expect to find me in this bed, did you?" And then she switched on the light...
"No madam", said the Gardener
Talking lights.. Winter is here or rather the clocks go back at midnight. Have a good weekend and see you on Monday.
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."