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The excitment is building for Royal Ascot ...

A wet morning

Monday, 18 May 2015

"Think big thoughts but relish small pleasures."

H. Jackson Brown Jr.

Warm_up

Warming up before exercise

It started to rain first thing as we all arrived in the yard and it has got heavier as the morning has gone on. It looks set in for most of the day. Rain is very much needed as the ground was getting quite firm and the times are very quick on most of the tracks. I don't know if you have noticed lately all the sand flying up as the horses race, whether at York or Newmarket. It is becoming a big trend to fill in hoof divots with sand rather than soil. I have always thought this is a mistake as good grass doesn't grow in sand and all it does is to make the courses firmer, but who am I to tell the experts. We have been on Hamilton Hill today which is as sheltered as any canter on the heath with plenty of trees to hide away from the elements. All has gone well so far.

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Singing Hinnie leads Bracken Brae and Smile that Smile

Prayer Time was very disappointing at Thirsk on Saturday, but I don't think he had the best of rides and to me the race was a non event. It's a long way to go and costs plenty of money with transport and expenses. It is always upsetting both for the owners and the supporters when we don't get a run for our money. I was going to send him up to Redcar for today but he hadn't eaten up overnight at the weekend and he will be given a bit of time to recover.

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Hold Firm with Astrovirtue and Comrade Bond

I was intrigued to see a news article in the Racing Post on Sunday about Jim McGrath, from Channel 4 Racing, saying he thought the racecourses allowing "betting in running" punters to use hospitality boxes for that purpose, were in the wrong. He is about three years behind me, as I have always thought this was an iniquitous situation. The racecourses sell the boxes to the punters who have about a 10 second advantage watching live over people at home who have delayed pictures. I once mentioned this to an official of a racecourse group and was told it was "Getting an edge". I call it cheating and was pleased to see Jim bring the matter up again. I doubt anything will be done.

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Some sydicate members enjoying coming to see their horses on Saturday

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