Horse welfare is paramount ...

Two more exciting days of York to go

Friday, 22 August 2014

"The best way to succeed in life is to act on the advice we give to others."


Comrade Bond schooling over tyres

It’s a much cooler morning and we had a shower of rain at about 5.30, which at least kept the dust down. The forecast for the weekend looks to be ok but Monday looks to be on the wet side. We have had a busy morning with some horses working on the Al Bahathri, and others schooling up at the Links on the polytrack surface. There are plenty of personnel in and the whole morning has gone without a hitch so far. Topamichi, Comrade Bond and My Guardian Angel all schooled. My Guardian Angel popped the fences with great aplomb. He is such a versatile horse. It is such a shame his dam died after only having the one foal.

Comrade Bond schooling over a small hurdle

We have one runner today at Newmarket. Prayer Time runs in the 3.20, a 7f maiden. He will definitely need this experience but will improve greatly for it. I see him as a horse for the future, as most of mine are, and as long as he enjoys the experience, he will be out again in two to three weeks time.

My Guardian Angel popping over the tyres

There were some real shocks yesterday, with Jamie Spencer deciding to quit race riding at the very young  age of 34, Taghrooda getting beaten in the Yorkshire Oaks and the very sad news of the death of Sir Eric Parker. He has done so much for the Racecourse Owners' Association and was a real champion of their cause. He also ran a very successful stud and always seemed a proper person. The industry will miss him. I don’t know what to make of the Spencer thing, but I would expect him to be back race riding within the next few years, as he is much too young to retire from the saddle. I would think the job will go to one of the younger jockeys in the weighing room, but you can’t beat experience and at 34, he has his best years ahead of him.

My Guardian Angel making it look easy

I was delighted to read in the Racing Post today the Bill Barber piece. It suggests that the Gibraltar betting and gaming judicial review against the government’s new laws of licensing, has little chance of succeeding. He says the government case looks pretty watertight, which would be good news for the industry. 

He also jumped the fences

It has been a fantastic York meeting so far. Today we have the sprinters taking centre stage, with the Group 1 Nunthorpe and then the Ebor tomorrow. It is fantastic to see the two seven-year-olds, Sole Power and Take Cover, going up against each other. It just shows these sprinters get better with age. Tomorrow’s Ebor looks a competitive race as normal. I have had very few runners in this race, our best being Lucitanica who was second in it years ago, beaten by one of R Hannon’s. I don’t think I have had many more runners in it. It is getting harder and harder to get a run in these big races, as you want a handicap mark in the high 90’s +. You would have thought Pallasator would have had a great chance, but he is drawn right on the wide outside, which must be against him. My each way bet would be Nearly Caught.