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Horse welfare is paramount ...

We have two runners tonight at Kempton

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

"The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do."

Thomas Jefferson.

17_Warm_up_in_school
Warming up in the indoor school

It’s an overcast, cooler morning than yesterday but there's no sign of any rain, which we are starting to need in a big way. We have had a two canter morning with everything on Warren Hill, where they have nearly finished the new walking ground. It will be a great boon to those yards south east of the town.

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Leaving the yard

Both our runners yesterday were far from disgraced. Prayer Time was a little bit keen, couldn’t get much cover but there is still plenty of improvement in him as he matures. I think it was another good maiden and it will be interesting to see how the form works out as the year progresses. Lexi Grady Alice was a bit slowly away and didn’t particularly like coming down the hill, but she made plenty of progress once on the uphill climb and I think once we get her over a 1m plus she can definitely win a race or two. She is not very big but is genuine, and I will be looking for a suitable race in the not too distant future.

We have two runners tonight, both at Kempton. Crystal Pearl runs in the 7.15, the 1m 4f handicap. She is not drawn very well in ten, but has never run a bad race and I am sure will do the same once again tonight. Blue Bounty runs in the next at 7.45, the 7f handicap. He is drawn much better in two and this sort of race should suit him well. I hope he gets a clear run in the straight, as once they turn in, they tend to go right across the track at this venue.

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Jumping off at the start of the canter

It is the start of the St Leger meeting today, with the now very popular Legends race over 1m for retired jockeys. There is always a great craic in the weighing room and it raises a lot of money for charity. I see the ground is called good to soft, good in the straight at the moment, but with the weather like it is, I can see it drying up quite quickly for the Classic on Saturday. It is disappointing that the Irish Champions weekend has emerged as a new festival, in direct competition for the top horses and jockeys at Doncaster. There was evidently no discussion between the two racing authorities, or if there were the sponsors of Doncaster were not informed. This could be very detrimental to the future of the St Leger. Our BHA must stand up and be counted, as we cannot afford to lose or even lose the excitement of a British classic. The build up to the big day is essential and distractions as near as Ireland are going to once again hit the viewing figures hard. I keep saying it, but there is nobody with any brains to sort this whole mess out. There is no pattern to the racing, whether it be seasons, i.e. flat, jump and all-weather. The courses seem to do what they want with fixtures and prize money and everybody else just has to go along with the flow, not knowing what the future is to bring.