They are not children ...

Another bright, sunny morning

Wednesday, 25 August 2010



Fasette (Ashley)

Your dog - 

''He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.''



Miss Wendy (Liam)

Another bright, sunny morning, in fact, an absolutely perfect morning: just the right temperature, no breeze and the ground in great shape. I took ten horses up to the Links schooling grounds first thing, where we met Mattie Bachelor and Colin Bolger, who along with our other lads put them all through their paces. We start off over the logs, tyres and tiny hurdles before progressing to the bigger full-size hurdles, so each horse will have left the ground at least thirty times within their schooling session. Even if we don't end up running them over hurdles, it does them very good mentally, as it gives them something new to think about and it is amazing what good a session can do for them.  


Red Barcelona (Mattie Bachelor) and Fasette (Ashley)

Astrodonna got a bit bogged down in the ground yesterday and she is certainly one that will benefit from a session over the hurdles in the near future. As for yesterday and all the non-runners furore, that we have had in today's Racing Post, I must comment that everyone was declaring on good ground 48 hours before and that when the ground goes this soft, it is a complete waste of time to run horses that just don't handle it. With the 48 hour declarations, the trainers were told, and it is the only reason we agreed to give it a trial, that a good proportion of the extra income, that the powers-that-be told us would be forthcoming from overseas betting income, was to be ploughed back into prize money. This has not happened in the manner the professionals expected, as we always thought it wouldn't be. But saying all that, we were prepared to give it a go, so we cannot get castigated if the ground changes and horses are withdrawn. I see a few people were commenting that trainers should look at the weather forecast more often; they obviously don't read this daily column to see how much trainers do look at the forecasts. The problem is that the meteorologists don't have much of a clue either, even with all the satellites they have to help. There are many pros-and-cons with 48 hour declarations, as with a lot of things and we have either to change back to the old system or stop griping about the new. But we must make sure that the income stream from it is correctly monitored and goes to the right place.  


Red Barcelona (Mattie Bachelor)

The Owls were back in the old routine last night, getting beaten 4-2 away at Scunthorpe United. At least, it must have been reasonably entertaining in the last 20 minutes but cannot do anything for the morale of the players when we are losing to such teams. Phil's second team, Northampton Town, scraped home in a penalty shoot-out away to Reading so, as you can imagine, he has a smirk on his face again!


Astrovenus (Mattie Bachelor)



Astroleo (Liam)



Captain Clint (Dan) and Locum (Colin Bolger)