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4th January 2017

Plus 4 and dry when driving in.

The frost never really came out of the ground yesterday as temperature hardly rose about 2 degrees.

I was not at Bangor yesterday although we did have a runner. Ben Arthur found the inner hurdle track far too tight and struggled to keep on an even keel. That was his third run so hopefully the handicapper will allow him a rating which will make life easier for him later in the season.

I know they race quite a bit now at Bangor but I am not a fan of their inside hurdle track. Fine if you were practicing for racing over hurdles at Chester.. that idea was soon binned.

Abbreviate jumped hurdles with Mikey Hamill first lot.

Michael and Gerry Worcester called in late morning to see Shaluna and Coco des Champ.. Coco is heading to Ireland where she is going to start a new career as a broodmare.

We have no runners today.

Leighs Blog..

''Warwick on Saturday (New Years Eve), an easy trip an hour down the road with one.

Warwick racecourse stables are large with plenty of warm water wash down boxes, unfortunately it is about mile away from the parade ring!! It's a long walk up the side of the course, they have fortunately put sand down on the walkway now as it  used to be woodchip, which would get very wet and dirty, not ideal when you are trying to present a clean horse!

A free meal voucher is provided, which is nice for a small local track, and the food is good too, I had a small rump streak, cooked how I like it.

No New Years Eve party on Saturday night as we had an early start for Catterick on Sunday. Clear roads and the best of the weather made this easier than normal, so only 4 hours to get there! Catterick is a nice friendly place, it has a welcoming feel to it. The stable yard is on the other side of the road to the racecourse but it is not far and they have temporary traffic lights to make sure we cross in safety.

The canteen is very nice, it has sofas and reminds me of someone's sitting room! The food is good and they always have a range to homemade cakes to stock up on for the journey home.

A quick trip up the motorway to Bangor yesterday. Luckily it got warmer as we got there!

The stables at Bangor are a little rustic and could do with a little improvement. The stable roofs are quite low which is not ideal for a large horse or a difficult one, and there is not much space between the boxes to walk the horses off.

The most important problem is that there are only 3 washdown bays and these are cold water ones. There is not much space between them so if a horse played up it could cause problems.

The racecourse side of Bangor is nice, although there is no stand you still have a clear view of the whole course, and the whole place is very smart.

Again we got free food and drink vouchers. As well as the normal hot food you can get paninis and pasta salad with roasted vegetables or chicken as a healthier alternative.

A few quieter days as the dust settles after Christmas which gives me time to tidy the horses up, pull manes and trim tails ready for their next run.''

The following questions that were in last year's GED (grade 12 equivalent) examination (These are genuine answers). 

Q.  What is the fibula?  
A.   A small lie.  

Q.  What does 'varicose' mean?  
A.   Nearby.  

Q.  What is the most common form of birth control?  
A.   Most people prevent contraception by wearing a condominium.   (That would work.)  

I forgot to wish a happy birthday to Rita Creed a couple of days ago..

Thinking of having a pet painted or drawn? One of my old inmates Valento has just been Adrian Thompson-Boyce .. his web site