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11th December 2019

Plus 2 and dry when driving in.

Wet overnight followed by frost.. an interesting combination..

David Bass was in this morning. Not that many needed to work.

Randy Weeks was here for a meeting with Peter Kerr and myself.. A discussion on the merits and plans for syndicates....

Andrew Balding has written a letter to Nick Rush which has been shared in todays Racing Post.

Andrew, along with other major flat trainers is very annoyed that the BHA has changed the rules about how much trainers can share with their apprentices when it comes to riding fees and percentages

On the face of it you would say that the BHA are right, especially in this modern political and financial climate.. but when you sit down with any trainer and understand what he does to make and help the life of a young apprentice, and how they help and manage their aspirations,  you would soon realises that, without any sort of financial incentive, why would you bother.

The time these trainers take in helping their young jockeys is huge.

They supply horses for them to learn and ride on in races, then they sort out all transport arrangement for their youngsters to go and ride out at other trainers and how they arrive at the racecourses…They actually manage their lives.. Yes I hear you say so what, but Andrew and others have made it a business and one that has brought through some top flight young jockeys.

It is a system that does not have the same appeal in jump racing.

I have never taken any percentage of a conditional jockeys riding fee, but then I have not started many jockeys off.

It is hard to get these youngsters going as owners understandably want the best jockey available, or a stable jockey to ride their horses .. lets face it jump horses don’t have the same amount of runs per season as a flat horse, so why would an owner give an inexperience youngster a chance, especially when you pay the same for a full fledged jockey.

It is very hard for these youngsters to get going.. As an example I have a good young conditional jockey here in Chester Williams. Chester is paid a full wage and I don’t take money out of his wages when he is away riding at the races and misses a days work because he is riding far away from Thorndale.

I encourage Chester, and Ned Curtis, to ride out one day a week for other trainers so that they can put their riding skills about. I want them to succeed but it is not cost effective as a trainer..

Once these youngsters have the experience then of course their claim is a huge advantage, but it is a case of getting there, and as Andrew rightly said in his letter, many jockeys now riding are the sons of trainers, or related..

Moving on, we hope to have two runners today at Leicester.. Commodore Barry and Sea Story. For my thoughts on their chances please click here.

We havbe a new owner of the month. Click here to read all about Alan James

Your chance for a Morning on the gallops...

Was this your wife driving home?