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A sunny birthday

Tuesday, 07 April 2015

"A birthday is just the first day of another 365 day journey round the sun. Enjoy the trip."

Anon.

Alb_2

Frost at first lot and below Prayer Time and Hold Firm

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We woke this morning to a hard overnight frost and there were plenty of white fields and a heavy mist as I drove in at first light. It has developed into a perfect morning with plenty of blue sky and no wind, and I'm sure the temperature will rise towards midday. I used the Al Bahathri at first lot to work some three year olds and we have been on Bury Hills polytrack for second lot. On a morning like this there is no better place to be than on the heath.

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The Guv'nor giving instructions on Bury Hills

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Mr. Turner, the Medicean ex Astrodonna, Heavensfield, Careless Rapture and Astrowolf

It's the build up to Saturday's Grand National all week and, with the weather as it is, it should be perfect ground for the showpiece event. With the moderation of the fences over the last few years it has become a staying handicap with much of the Aintree factor now missing. Horses like Red Rum came alive when jumping the fences. Their ability to change direction in mid-air and get balanced when jumping tricky fences doesn't come into play as much. Saying that though it is much safer now and there are still fantastic stories to come from it. The Irish National winner at the weekend was ridden by Katie Walsh, daughter of the legendary Ted, and it's not beyond the bounds of possibility that a lady could win ours. That would be give Great British Racing something to write about.

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The first day out in a big paddock together for Astrodonna and her Havana Gold   filly and Astromancer and her Kheleyf filly

With another filly foal born at the stud this weekend, this makes eight fillies out of ten foals so far. It's amazing how nature performs and let's hope we have one or two more colts from the mares that are due.

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The Nathaniel ex Battery Power filly

Thank you for everybody's good wishes on my birthday today. I don't know if people know, but I was born on Grand National day and it's one of my ambitions to train the winner of this great race, but never having had a runner in it so far, it will have to be a one off.