Velvet Voice runs at Wolverhampton ....

Two runners today at Yarmouth

Friday, 24 June 2016

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind."

Dr. Seuss.

Desert River

What a storm we had last night, thunder and lightning and torrential rain once again. It was unbelievable and for 20 minutes, half an hour it thundered down. Where all the water has gone I don’t know as everywhere must be full to the brim and if we get any calls for hosepipe bans this summer it will be a complete joke. It has thankfully all blown over and is now a bright blue sky morning and beautiful sunshine. Di and Ian have got the fan on full blast in the office trying to keep cool. We have had a good morning workwise with the horses doing good cantering work. They all look pictures and are, in fact, thriving at present, both physically and mentally so if I can just keep them free of any infection, hopefully we can have many more winners in the weeks ahead.


We have three entries today but only two will run as the ground is much too soft for Sandwood Bay here at Newmarket. It will be very sticky ground tonight on the July course, especially after yesterday’s downpour and the sunshine this morning, which leaves us with just the two at Yarmouth. Our first runner is Time Down Under who is a brother to our own Prayer Time. He is a compact, strong colt who I am not sure about the ground and has it all on today against a form horse in the Godolphin runner and the expensive newcomers from Sir Mark’s and John Gosden’s. He will improve enormously from the experience and I am sure a step up in trip will suit him in time. Our other runner is Smile That Smile. I have fitted her with cheekpieces for the first time, the track should suit and I am hoping she can show some much better form than she has done of late. We have no other runners over the weekend.


I attended the Thoroughbred Breeders seminar yesterday at Newmarket, which was very well attended. There were plenty of ‘expert’ speakers and the morning was taken up with genetics and how is can contribute to the breeding and training industries. We heard all about the genes in pigs and cattle and the dairy industry in America and how the parentage had been used to manage their individual industries. More milk, more meat and more births were shown in great detail and they think they can use it to improve the soundness of racehorses. The moral use of genetics by commercial companies was muted as a problem and I am sure this debate will go on and on. Infectious diseases was the afternoon’s subject and we heard from varying vets about what can happen when the herpes virus causes abortion in mares, plus all the exotic virus’ that may come over from the continent and via the transportation of horses. All very interesting, all very well attended. I think the one good thing that came out of it was that you need to be constantly vigilant, have a proper stable / stud management and be lucky as you just never know when it is going to strike.

Setting off for Yarmouth

The butterfly competition has had many entries and there were a couple who got it right. It is in fact a Silver Studded Blue which is quite rare and I was very privileged to photograph one, rather than tread on it. When you are walking about the heath, like I do constantly, I must have trod on one of these lovely creatures over the years, but I will now be taking much better note. The only good thing about the heath is that they are not trying to build on it and never will do so we are not only the custodians of the best training area in the world, we are the custodians of many rare species. Long may it continue.