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11th March 2022

Plus 7 and dry when driving in.

My walk around Cheltenham yesterday was a good example of what is going to happen on racecourses over the coming week.. Drying ground!

Jon Pullin (Cheltenham’s Clerk of the Course)and I walked the whole course and although the course was in excellent condition it was drying fast.. It was genuinely lovely good jumping ground.. Ideal for racing yesterday, but they still have a few days to the start of their Festival meeting and I fear that if todays rain does not materialize then the taps will be turned on.. Whatever Jon does will be wrong as not all will agree….Tough call..

Wincanton and drying ground.. several non runners and bare ground due to wet meetings over the last few months..

Talk Of The Moon ran far better than last time and was suited by the faster pace of the race. Sadly Those Tiger Feet pulled up again.. something amiss, but as yet nothing coming to light..

All the jockeys at Wincanton were wearing black armbands in respect for Andy Turnell.. Sadly Andy, who was one of the most stylist jockeys and a hugely successful trainer died at the age of 73…Birds Nest. Katabatic, Maori Venture.. Great names and he was associated with them all..A quiet unassuming man who had wonderful manners and was always immaculately turned out.. and never drove a dirty car..For those old enough to recall.. he rode over jumps as short as Lester Piggott did on the flat..

Day three of the Test..The WE's are 62 ahead.. Nkrumah Bonner's century was certainly a good one....

Mat away for 48 hours talking racing to Cheltenham previews

We have 5 runners today at two meetings. At Exeter we run Trelawne, Captain Rose, Imperial Hurricane and Percy Veering while at Leicester we run The Edgar Wallace.. For my thoughts on all their chances please click here.

Here are a few more facts on why as a country Ukraine matters..

Ukraine is an agricultural country:

1st in Europe in terms of arable land area;

3rd place in the world by the area of black soil (25% of world's volume);

1st place in the world in exports of sunflower and sunflower oil;

2nd place in the world in barley production and 4th place in barley exports;

3rd largest producer and 4th largest exporter of corn in the world;

4th largest producer of potatoes in the world;

5th largest rye producer in the world;

5th place in the world in bee production (75,000 tons);

8th place in the world in wheat exports;

9th place in the world in the production of chicken eggs;

16th place in the world in cheese exports.

Ukraine can meet the food needs of 600 million people.

To finish..Happy birthday to Peter Bennett Jones