Horse welfare is paramount ...

It's the sign of the times

Thursday, 27 March 2014

"Be moderate in order to taste the joys of life in abundance."


My Guardian Angel

It’s a mixed morning with bright blue skies and heavy showers. It’s not cold though and with very little wind, it is actually quite a nice morning. Everything has just been out doing normal good swinging canters on Bury Side. It was quite busy, but this is normal for a Thursday and everybody just seems to get on with their work.

The sun has come out

I am off to do the draw for the Lincoln for At The Races this morning. We have had a couple of winners of the race in the past with Babodana and Smokey Oakey. It is a very hard race to get into now and you have to be rated 95+ to be even guaranteed a run, unlike the old days when horses were getting in off 7 stone. I have said this for several years now; it is very disappointing that the start of the flat is such a damp squib. We have got the Dubai World Cup and the Lincoln this coming weekend but then it goes quiet for ages. I was mentioning to someone this morning that it used to be very exciting in days gone by. From about Christmas onwards, all the chat was about who was going to win the Lincoln, but now it seems to be just another ‘also ran’ handicap. I think there could be plenty more done to promote it. It’s maybe just the sign of the times and how things move on, but there doesn’t seem to me to be any coordination as to how our fixture list functions.

Talking over the garden fence

Talking about the sign of the times, there is a big article in the Racing Post today on betting shops and what products are enticing people into them. The machines are the main attraction and are the big bread winner for the bookmakers. It is a fact now, I’m afraid, that most punters have a bet on their phones or computer. The days of walking down to the betting shop, where you could chat with other likeminded individuals, have a cigarette, a cup of coffee and have a few pounds on the horses and dogs, has gone. I personally think we will have a reduction in betting shops, or if not a reduction, we won’t see them increasing if the tax on the machines does what it is supposed to do.