Horse welfare is paramount ...

The firm ground means Blue Bounty is a non-runner

Friday, 08 August 2014

"A good book on your shelf is a friend that turns its back on you and remains a friend." Anon.

Topamichi (Joe Akehurst)

We have only had a couple of very quick sharp showers overnight and the heavy rain that was forecast has not got to us yet, if it ever will. The hurricane which is supposed to be on its way, I doubt will come anywhere near us. We have had a good morning so far with a visit to the Al Bahathri first lot, where I had a couple of jockeys in, and all went well. Second lot have just done two canters, again up the Al Bahathri without a problem and third lot will be a real mixture of walkers, trotters and a few to canter.

Lexi Grady Alice (Jimmy Quinn)

Blue Bounty will not be running today as the rain has not arrived at Brighton. When I talked to the clerk of the course, who was half way round the track at 6.15 this morning, he told me they had had no rain overnight and the ground was good to firm all over with no good in it at all. There are already seven non runners at Brighton and 24 altogether across the cards. 48 hour declarations is the bane of our lives and for everybody else involved in the game. It certainly needs looking into.

Crystal Pearl (Jessica)

We run two fillies in the first tomorrow at Newmarket, the 7f maiden, Peeps and Lexi Grady Alice. Both will improve considerably for the outing and we will learn a lot from their debuts.

Toptempo (Heather)

The headlines on the front of the Post this morning state ‘racing braced for sharp rise in all-weather cards’. A quarter of the fixtures look like being all-weather in 2015. I have been telling you this all the time. We are certainly on the slippery slope to boredom if the BHA sanctions these fixtures. We need someone to stand up and shout loudly that we don’t want this to happen.

Comrade Bond (Sophie)

There was a great article yesterday on racings World War 1 heroes and it made for fascinating reading. What brave men they were and how sad so many of them didn’t come home. The paragraph on Fred Rickaby, who was Lester Piggott’s uncle, was enlightening. He had already ridden five Classic winners and was first jockey to George Lampton. Mr Lampton said ‘I don’t think I ever knew a jockey so universally respected and liked by owners, trainers, and by those is his own profession’ and his commander of the Tank Squadron said ‘he was the most gallant and orderly little fellow and set a good example to everyone, not only when fighting but also when in camp.’ He was killed in one of the last actions that were fought before the end of the war. It was a great loss to racing. His two sons were both top class jockeys, Bill and Fred, and his sister gave his middle name to her only child, Lester.

The piece on stud owner Arthur Boyd-Rochfort was also brilliant reading. He won a VC for his bravery on saving his men from a bomb. There were so many brave men lost in both World Wars who were involved in our industry and I just hope the young of today appreciate and realise that they did it so we could have a free society.