Baileys Blog

28th January 2022

Minus 3 and dry when driving in.. No rain in the foreseeable forecast.

It was drying ground at Wetherby yesterday which did not help Lady Of The Night's cause.. She ran an absolute blinder for her first try over fences.. Jumping like an old handicapper she just found the home straight ground was not as soft as the back straight.. She finished a gallant second, beaten 3 lengths, and finishing nearly 30 in front of the third.. Her owner John Perriss was delighted with his homebred mare.

Percy Veering again ran better than form figures would suggest.. He is slow (most horses are?) but he was still going at the same speed at the end of the race as he was at the beginning..This good looking horse, bought by Mags O’Toole, is taking his time, but I do believe in time we will win through.. when the penny drops.. He is a big backward baby but he does jump well and fences in time will be his forte.

Wetherby is a great racecourse who look after owners well, but it is two courses.. The back straight is old turf and always rides softer, while the straight is completely different, and a bit like Ascot, it was dug up some years ago (new part of the A1 was the reason) and as a result the re-laid soil in lighter and drains quicker..

With this drying spell they might be adding water to the home straight by the time they race there next weekend..Doncaster has been doing that all week! In January!!

Good to see the old timers there .. I had a long chat with Peter and Mick Easterby and the younger Harvey Smith.. Between the three of them they would soon put racing right!!

Great Tennis in Melbourne.. Nadal was excellent to get through to the finals..

Graham Potts our vet was in for his Friday visit..

We have two runners today. Samatian heads to Doncaster while Charming Getaway heads to Huntingdon and for my thoughts please click here.

I am spending the afternoon looking at the horses that are going through the ring at the Tattersalls Cheltenham sales which taks place after racing tomorrow.

Barry Cryer.. He died yesterday and was one of lifes funniest men...

A woman walked into a shop to buy a parrot, a beautiful blue-and-gold job, and she said to the man, "How much?", and he said, "Twenty quid".

She said, "Twenty pounds? But he's so beautiful."

The shopkeeper said, "Well, I have to be quite frank with you, he's got a bit of history. He was in a brothel and, to put it delicately, he's got quite an extensive vocabulary."

She said, "I'll take a chance on that", took the parrot back to her flat, took the cover off. The parrot looked round her flat and said, "New place. Very nice".

Two daughters walked in. The parrot said, "New place. New girls. Very nice indeed."

And her husband walked in, and the parrot said, "Hello Keith."

To Finish .. happy birthday to Cornelius Lysaght

27th January 2022

Plus 8 and dry when driving in.

I am not sure about London.. Certainly not as busy as it used to be as there were no tourists..I say that, but I almost felt like one..Archie galloped on a treadmill and was videoed doing so.. most revealing..

Thursday morning and as you well know it is our easy one.

There is not a great deal going on here although we do have a couple of runners at Wetherby. Percy Veering and Lady Of The Night head there and for my thoughts please click here.

Sad news to report ..

Poppy Greenway who worked here a couple of years ago died on January 15....

Poppy was a very good rider who we felt would go a long way if she had stayed in racing.. It was not to be as she decided that she would rather look after event horses, and although we rather lost touch with her as a result we did see her bicycling past the drive every day on her way to Withington…

Her Mum Sandy sent this page across to me and I asked her if I can post it.. Please click here to read..

So sad.. A tragic time for her family and all our thoughts are with them at this awful time.

This is one that I might be proud of..

Holyrood howler..

Jings! And, indeed, crivens! The Scottish government’s Twitter team tried to wish people a Happy Burns Night on Tuesday in Gaelic. Alas, the scheme did gang agley. “Oidhche Losgadh Sona”, they posted, perhaps via an online translator, but the middle word is not the poet’s name but what you get from sitting on a fire in a kilt.

On a bad day for Scottish social media, Glasgow city council also tweeted in praise of Burns, inviting visitors to see his “plague” on Argyle Street.

26th January 2022

Plus 3 and dry when driving in.

Patience is a virtue..Well it is if you own racehorses..

Proof was there for all to see yesterday when Mr Grey Sky won the lucky last at Leicester.

A horse with huge talent who won his first two bumpers at Haydock, but since then the wheels have rather come off..

Well to be realistic he has so many niggling problems that his owners Phil and Gill Andrews must have wondered about his future.. yes as I said patience..

It was well rewarded in the end as yesterday MGS jumped off in front and stayed there..

There was not much day light by the last race but being a magnificent grey, we could see him

Delighted for Phil and Gill Andrews .. Thank you for being so patient.

Stuart Ballantyne and his daughter Rosie were the very able support team..

Our other runner Imperial Hurricane ran well for most of the race but was found wanting in the strength department.. The tacky ground sapped his energy late home, but the experience will not be lost on him..

Imperial Hurricane is a huge horse who will be far better over fences when the time comes....

Paul Toplass and son Stan were there to see their horse Imperial Hurricane.

Wednesday morning..No runners today

David Bass, Ciaran Gethings, Jay Tidball and Harrison Beswick were all in to ride out.

Norman Carter was here second lot to see his horse Samatian and discuss plans..

Norman's KBRS horse Voyburg is having a break with Jason Maguire on his water treadmill..

Nick Holmes was here third lot to see his KBRS horse Charming Getaway

John and Laura Garrett were here to see their horses Captain Rose and The Bull McCabe and their KBRS horses Fair Frontieres, Chazza, Magical Escape and Gerard Mentor

Mary Dulverton was here late morning to say goodbye to Pipesmoker..The lovely Pipesmoker has been retired and being rehomed later this week.

Archie and I spent the day in London.. Archie had an appointment at the Fortius Clinic.. Speedy feet!!

It is that time of year when you need a little something to laugh at.. I am sure you have all seen these misquotes before but..

A female news anchor who, the day after it was supposed to have snowed and didn't, turned to the weatherman and asked, 'So Bob, where's that eight inches you promised me last night?'

Not only did HE have to leave the set, but half the crew did too because they were laughing so hard!

Steve Ryder covering the US Masters: 'Ballesteros felt much better today after a 69 yesterday.'

Clair Frisby talking about a jumbo hot dog on Look North said: 'There's nothing like a big hot sausage inside you on a cold night like this. '

Mike Hallett discussing missed snooker shots on Sky Sports: 'Stephen Hendry jumps on Steve Davis's misses every chance he gets.'

Michael Buerk on watching Philippa Forrester cuddle up to a male astronomer for warmth during BBC1's UK eclipse coverage remarked: 'They seem cold out there, they're rubbing each other and he's only come in his shorts.'

Ken Brown commentating on golfer Nick Faldo and his caddie Fanny Sunneson lining-up shots at the Scottish Open: 'Some weeks Nick likes to use Fanny, other weeks he prefers to do it by himself.'

To finish.. Happy birthday to First Flows Owner.. Tony Solomons..

25th January 2022

Plus 1 and dry when driving in.

Hard to believe it but they are planning on watering for this weekends Doncaster meeting!!

It has been dry and yes we like to talk about the weather..

Simon and Marian Waters were here for a morning on the gallops and Maddie’s excellent breakfast after..

Graham Potts our vet was in for his Tuesday visit.

This week movers and shakers in the BHA handicap charts were Bobhopeornohope down 1 to 127 and Rockys Treasure went down 7 to 120

We have two runners today at Leicester.. Imperial Hurricane and Mr Grey Sky head there and for my thoughts please click here.

Sundays Cocklebarrow races was a resounding success.. 4000 people (including owners, trainers etc) went through the gates.. Staggering that that many went to the Heythrop point to point, but thanks to my brother in law Michael Wills persistance they achieved what many would have said was the impossible..

The likes of David Minton and Marcus Armytage all told me how brilliant it was..Big field of runners and serious fun for the racegoers. Lingfield or Warwick on Sunday would have been chuffed to bits to see 4000 through their gates?

It is that time of year when you need a litlle something to laugh at.. I am sure you have all seen these misquotes before but..

Ted Walsh - Horse Racing Commentator – 'This is really a lovely horse. I once rode her mother.'

New Zealand Rugby Commentator – 'Andrew Mehrtens loves it when Daryl Gibson comes inside of him.'

Pat Glenn, weightlifting commentator – 'And this is Gregoriava from Bulgaria .. I saw her snatch this morning and it was amazing!'

Harry Carpenter at the Oxford-Cambridge boat race 1977 – 'Ah, isn't that nice.. The wife of the Cambridge President is kissing the Cox of the Oxford crew..'

US PGA Commentator – 'One of the reasons Arnie (Arnold Palmer) is playing so well is that, before each tee shot, his wife takes out his balls and kisses them ........Oh my god !! What have I just said??'

Carenza Lewis about finding food in the Middle Ages on 'Time Team Live' said: 'You'd eat beaver if you could get it.'

24th January 2022

Plus 3 and dry when driving in.

It was always going to be a big weekend for us and the hope was that we might have a winner, and thankfully so it proved to be..Our main hope was likely to have been Lady Of The Night at Warwick, but good ground was too good for her and she did not run..So it was left to..

Two For Gold came up trumps in the main race of the Lingfield Magic Million weekend The Fleur De Lys Chase yesterday

Yes TFG narrowly won the Fleur De Lys Chase.. the big race of their weekend and gave his very happy owners’ May We Never Be Found Out Partnership’ a day to remember..  

We did find out who they were.. Kevin Clancy, Stephen Cannon, Mathew Cannon, Andrew Fundell and Oli Bell…. All were there, well almost, as Oli was based at Ascot working for ITV4.. What a result and one that nearly netted them as much as Sishkin did n Saturday.. Both races were 150K.. ..

Hats off to ARC for putting so much prize money on offer and I just hope they felt rewarded for their efforts..We targeted this race meeting when they announced it and we so nearly had a double as Queenohearts was so narrowly beaten there on Friday..

Two sadness.. Firstly we missed the late Dermot Clancy who was one of the original members of the team who bought and owned TFG and condolences to Paul Nicholls and his owner and breeder Mr Fear of Master Tommytucker who sadly died at the third last in TFG ‘s race.

It was a great day..And all part of a great weekend of jump racing..

Go back 24 hours to Saturday Ascot..The SBK Clarence House Chase..

The race was billed as the race of the year, but the result showed it was much more than that .. It was probably the race of the decade..

What a race and what a brilliant result for British Jump Racing. Shishkin won the battle and what a battle it was too…

Energumene, First Flow and Shishkin started the race with caution and then the pace just grew and grew. For a moment there was a chance that things might go to plan as Shishkin made a mistake coming up the hill and for a moment I though First Flow might benefit, but it was not to be..

Energumene jumped the last 3 lengths clear and the race was set up with Sishkin coming late.. Willie Mullins must have thought he had won and then whoosh it was over as Shishkin flew past him with 50 yards to go..

Yes it was the race we had all hoped for and I was just immensely proud that we played our part in what will be one of the most talked about race for years to come. First Flow ran a blinder to finish 3rd...

David Bass said FF felt better and ran as well if not better than when he won the race last year.. That alone tells you how brilliant a race it was as First Flow was hammered by 18 lengths….

We were hugely proud of our boy and at 10 years young he shows that he is no back number and continues to show extraordinary form figures since becoming a racehorse..

Well done to Will Hodkinson who looks after him and adores him.. they won the best turned out award.. No consolation prize.. but a prize we pride ourselves on as my team, with Leigh Pollard travelling and preparing them win many.

David Bass said he had never ridden in a race like that.. He had never been so fast on a chaser and Nico said the same.. It was a honour and privilege to have been there and participate..

Brough Scott wrote in yesterdays Times.....

''The atmosphere as the two horses passed the post was as extraordinary as any I have ever sensed in any stadium, and that includes Olympics, Wimbledon and the Six Nations.

As people rushed to the rails to greet the heroes it was as if thousands of bees were in “did you see that?” conversation and as De Boinville rode back in triumph, as he has on the likes of Altior and Sprinter Sacre, he would say “That’s the best reception I have ever had in my life.”

First Flow was fine yesterday morning and now he will be aimed at the Ascot Chase on February 18th.. Two For Gold is fine this morning too.. Plans are not so easy..

Francis and Katharine Brooke asked Clare and I for lunch and we sat with Willie Mullins, and then I watched the race with Nicky Henderson.. Yes it was day to remember..

To finish.. A special weekend and one that David Bass rightly deserves a huge amount of credit for as I am not sure many other jockeys would have won on TFG..

Definition that probably applies to David's ride..‘a person in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity’

22nd January 2022

Plus 2 and dry when driving in.

That hurt…

Yes you might well ask why, but finishing second with Queenohearts really did hurt, not because she was beaten on the nod, but because all the hard work and effort by all here to get her there means many don't appreciate when you finish second.

Yes of course I know it was a huge training performance by all here and huge patience from her owners who probably thought her career was over after having leg problems..We are so proud of her.. She is tough, honest and determined..

But thanks to her owners patience, Jason Maguire’s water treadmill, Will who rides her out most days, Ciaran Gething who was unable to ride her yesterday but rode all her work and of course the work Laura Collett put in with her jumping, she so nearly pulled of the moment of our season..

But..Sadly her defeat rather sums up our season!!!!..

Look on the bright side .. Queenohearts ran a cracker and we are hugely proud of her… what do I say.. Bugger!! The good news is that she seems fine this morning.

More of a bugger was the ridiculous decision by Market Rasen to keep holding inspections when frankly racing surely had no chance of going ahead because of frost..11.30 was their last call and it took until nearly 12pm to announce their abandonment ..

Ciaran Gething who was due to ride my two runners at MR rang before the result of the inspection to say that it was still frozen in the shaded areas of the course..

I am sorry, but Market Rasen called it wrong and because of that owners were pissed off and costs incurred.. John Perriss and I were 45 minutes away.. Nannette Sellars who has yet to see her horse Flirtatious Girl run (due to last years covid ) was 20 minutes away..

Both owners are going to receive a bill for transport and staff costs, but the saving grace for them is that they don’t have to pay their jockey fees (which must be wrong)..

Yes a wasted day and I am sorry for Ciaran who should have been at Lingfield to ride Queenohearts but was retained to ride at MR for Stuart Edmonds and my two horses.. Racecourses need to make decisions earlier.. two inspection not 3?

John Perriss and I watched the race while having lunch on the way home.. we shouted, but to no avail..!

Enough said..

Saturday morning.

David Bass, Ciaran Gethings and Harrison Beswick were in this morning.

We had Sue and Graeme Brown here for a morning on the gallops as booked through CD Tours.

They were joined by Peter Jones, Mark Francis, James and Ruth Coxon.. And Stewart and Bev Wright who were here to see their KBRS horses Phantom Getaway, Charming Getaway and Tantoli..Gary and Tracy Betley were here to see their KBRS horse Phantom Getaway. David Molineux was here to see his KBRS horse Firth Of Gold..Breakfast for all after..

We have one runner today and two tomorrow.. First Flow runs at Ascot today. Tomorrow Two For Gold heads to Lingfield while Lady Of The Night heads to Warwick and for my thoughts on all their chances please click here.

Meat Loaf..

When Marvin Aday was 13 years old, he clumsily trod on the foot of his American football coach who, in the anger of the moment, turned on the overweight boy and called him a “meat loaf”. The jibe was taken up by his classmates and when he turned up at school the next day, the name had been daubed on his locker.

Recognising that there was no point in protesting against the innate cruelty of adolescent boys, Aday stoically accepted the nickname and set about turning it to his advantage, creating the brash, larger-than-life personality that would in adulthood make Meat Loaf one of the biggest-selling names in American rock music.

I recall seeing him live in Oxford many years ago ..

Mikey Elliot took a team of us to see him perform live in Oxford .. Great show.. I had missed a couple of nights sleep (not sure why??) and as a result fell asleep in row 2..Hard to believe I know, especially when you know how much noise Bat Out Of Hell made, but sleep took over..

I awoke to find the great man standing above my chair with sweat pouring down on me… yes it was an hugely embarrassing moment!!!.. Worse than being called on stage by Dame Edna Everage

Dont forget to go to the Cocklebarrow races tomorrow.. Pony races start the day at 10.30.. A must visit if you are in the Cotswold this weekend..It is a huge day out..

Have a great weekend and see you on Monday..

21st January 2022

Minus 5 and dry when driving in..

Ludlow was busy and Bobhopeornohope finished 3rd.

Moderate day for the two Brits in Melbourne.. Were you glued to the TV to watch our two top liners crumble? Perhaps Brits should stay out of AUstralia?

Todays is the first of 3 days of the inaugural Lingfield Winter Million meeting.. A new one and a big one.. Many thought they might lose the meeting due to waterlogged ground and although it will be bloody heavy and very tiring it is frost that could stall the first days racing…

So it is a case of inspections all round today to see if racing will go ahead.

Latest...Racing goes ahead at Lingfield and probably at Market Rasen where they are holding a second inspection..

We have three runners today .. Flirtatious Girl and Lots Of Luck head to Market Rasen and Queenohearts heads to Lingfield and for my thoughts on their chances please click here.

Graham Potts our vet was in for his Friday visit..

One of the great producer of vocal noises of my youth died last night.. Meat Loaf.. Bat out of hell.

Farrow and Ball have released a new colour.. Sue Gray

However it is a very light shade, which means that if spread too thinly it looks like whitewash..

To finish.. Happy birthday to my old mate David Manley.... I am sure he will be hard at it waxing up....The Candle Company..

20th January 2022

Minus 3 and dry when driving in.

Plumpton has never really hit my boat, but for no other reason it is a long way, it can be a bad drive and I have not been very lucky there..

They try very hard to please (good prize money) and yesterday it showed when John and Penny Perriss arrived and there was no wheelchair access for the owners and trainer.. Dan Thompson their chief executive could not have tried harder to help us.. Just a shame that John's horse Rockys Treasure did not take a leaf out of Dan's book as RT tried for 2 circuits, but not 3…

A long way to go and a long way home.. we did not stay for lunch…. Good to see Gerard and Nicky Clinton who had a runner in our race.. A long way from Devon for them too..

Supper last night with Michael amd Mary Dulverton.. Always fun...I sat next to Pippa Green who told me the sad new that David Harland, who I berated (very much tongie in cheek) last week, broke his leg yesterday.. David is meant to be going on holiday in about 10 days time..Sorry to hear David..

Thursday and our easy day.

We have just the one runner today at Ludlow.. Bobhopeornohope heads there and for my thoughts on his chances please click here.

Another day at the Australian Open..Andy and Emma in action this morning..

Novak Djokovic became the first professional athlete in history to be banned from a major sporting competition for not taking drugs..

Quote of the day..Who said...

'Nobody told me that what we were doing was aganist the rules.. '

To finish we have a new Owner of the month Joe Goldring

19th January 2022

Plus 3 and dry when driving in..It looks like being dry all week…

Talk of watering at Ascot?

Exeter yesterday..Glancing Glory won best turned out and predictably finished 3rd ..which is where she should have on all known form.

David Bass, Ciaran Gethings, Jay Tidball and Harrison Beswick were all in to ride out this morning..

We worked a few and jumped Imperial Hurricane, Equus Dreamer, Talk Of The Moon, The Edgar Wallace, Trelawne, Pay The Pilot, Lady Of The Night, Chazza, Two For Gold, Queenohearts, Captain Rose, Sayadam, Does He Know, Kyntara, Inflagrante, Percy Veering and Fair Frontieres.. Videos might appear here later - First Lot, Second Lot

Luke Healy was here for a morning on the gallops.

David and Shantha Shuttle were here mid morning to see their KBRS horse Does He Know.

Cotswold Film Company were here again this morning to finish off their filming.

Graham Potts our vet was in this morning as he was at Exeter yesterday..

A good day for the Brits in Melbourne yesterday.. The Australian Open tennis...Even Mat watched Emma..

We have one runner today at Plumpton.. Not racecourse I go to often.. Rockys Treasure runs there and for my thoughts on his chances please click here.

The second half of Richard Wilkin's joke..

Things Confucius Did Not Say:

War does not determine who is right; it determines who is left.

Man who fights with wife all day get no piece at night.

Man who drives like hell is bound to get there.

Man who stands on toilet is high on pot.

Man who lives in glass house should change clothes in basement.

Wise man does not keep sledge hammer and slow computer in the same room.

To finish.. Huge apologies to Fenella Tillier for forgetting to mention that it was her birthday yesterday.. Sorry Fenella.. Please forgive me..

18th January 2022

Minus 4 and dry when driving in.

Sad news.. There was a fatal crash on the A436 yesterday.. The road from here to Birdlip was closed most of yesterday and was still early this morning.

First lot Bobhopeornohope and Queenohearts had a refresher course with Event rider Laura Collett..

Second lot Alan James was here to see his KBRS horses Voyburg, Chazza, Shinobi, Does He Know, Parc d’Amour, Tantoli, Fair Frontieres, Magical Escape and Phantom Getaway

Graham Cooper was here to see his KBRS horse Mikailovich.

Third lot we had about 15 members of the Racing press here to talk and admire First Flow..

They were here to report and drum up support for the supposed 2 horse race at Ascot on Saturday..The SBK Clarence House Chase.. A huge race. which FF won last year..

FF was unfancied last year and is certainly unfancied this time around in what is a far stronger race.. Only 5 horses entered and when you see what is running you can perhaps see why FF is unfancied.. BUT.. Who Knows we could surprise them.. Lets hope so..Sishkin and Energumene.. what have they done to deserve all the publicity!!

This weeks moves and shakers in the BHA handicap charts wwere Party Fuzz down 1 to 115 and Shanacoole Prince down 5 to 111, Voyburg down 2 to 101.

We have just the one runner today at Exeter.. Glancing Glory heads there and for my thoughts please click here.

The Australian Open..

This was sent my many.. including Disney and Godley..

The best thing for English Cricket is to try and find a way for Novak Djokovic to open the batting......

It took the Aussies almost 2 weeks to get him out !