A very well deserved winner of the Longines Ladies Award ...

We have one runner today at Wetherby

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

"St. Patrick's Day is an enchanted time - a day to begin transforming winter's dreams into summer's magic."

Adrienne Cook.

Comrade Bond leading the canter

We woke up to very heavy rain this morning. I’m not sure what time it started, but it was raining at 5 o’clock and as we write this at 9.15, it is pounding on the hut roof. I have already phoned Wetherby and asked them about the ground up there, but the clerk of the course has told me they have had none. We have had a good cantering morning with Jimmy in and although they have shut Long Hill polytrack for refurbishing, which meant everybody was trying to use certain canters, we managed to get out and back without a hitch. If the rain continues like this, all the rest will be staying in the indoor ride.

Peeps (Sophie)

We had another good day yesterday, with Topamichi winning well. I don’t think it was a bad race and the form will stand up. Jimmy gets on really well with him and the tactics of going on, if nothing else, did work well for us. What a mare Topatori was, as she has had Topaling winning five and now Topamichi has also won five. All her other offspring have won, including Topatoo who won a group race at York. She is very sadly missed, but her dynasty continues. Our breeding programme is working well and great credit goes to all the staff on the stud. Hold Firm finished second in a muddling race. Unbelievably he blew for 20 minutes afterwards and I think I may have left him a bit short. You never stop learning about horses, and with him being on the smaller side, I think I have been a bit easy with his work. I am sure he will win more races as he is game and genuine.

We have one runner today at Weatherby. Singing Hinnie runs at 5.45 in the bumper. She has been waiting for some better ground and I am just hoping it is not going to be too sticky for her. She is a great big filly, over 17 hands and has taken plenty of time to strengthen up. I am hopeful of a good run, but she will improve considerably for the outing today.

Swilken (Joe)

I forgot yesterday to mention the Cheltenham tipping competition and how easy it was for me to gain victory. I was never really challenged, or under pressure at any time and my challengers will have to burn the midnight oil when next taking me on at the Grand National meeting.

The final scores were

Richard minus £162

Phi minusl £143.34

MHT minus £3.34

Steve overseeing proceedings

I must comment once again on this crass idea of Great British racing to shorten the jockey and owners championship to a very restricted period in the season. Elitism springs out in spades here and if the powers that be authorise this mad idea, it will be to the detriment of our sport and we will become a laughing stock. How they think winning £25,000 will change a jockeys life is beyond me. They will get that in their percentage in one race and will make no difference to them at all. These marketing men cannot have watched Cheltenham; they must have been on Mars. What great stories we have just had, both horses and jockeys, and how the public have lapped it up and we have not had one of those stupid boards in the paddock anywhere to be seen. The sooner this idea is kicked into touch the better. I thought April 1st had come a month too soon.