Altered Method runs tonight in the 7.15 ...

The horses are in good form

Thursday, 13 April 2017

"We gain no easier advantage than be relentlessly pursuing our goal while others pursue an advantage."

Robert Brault.

Coming back in after first lot

It’s a bright morning but much colder than yesterday and I was feeding in moonlight once again. There is no rain due, or even forecast, for the next week at least. In fact I was getting texts yesterday from the heath foreman saying that the watered gallop will be open in the very near future. I can’t ever remember that being open as early as this. I hope we can get some rain and they don’t open it as it is hallowed turf and it will soon cut up and get worn if we use it when the spring grass is coming through. We have had a good morning cantering wise with most of the horses using Southfields Round and all the reports I am getting back from the lads, is that they are jumping out of their skins.

Second lot ready to pull out

I see other owners were complaining about the prize money yesterday, calling it desperate when a horse costing £190,000, got first prize money of £2,900. I hope the powers that be are taking notice but we have been going on about this for so long now and nothing seems to get done at all. When you have got Australia, France and Hong Kong producing unbelievable prize money for the owners, we can’t just live on our heritage alone. This article goes hand in glove with another one in the Post today about the all-weather tracks and how Newcastle may or may not have changed the look of the trainer’s table. Newcastle is still a good way up and very expensive to travel to from the big Yorkshire training centres, and it doesn’t surprise me that Mark Johnston and Richard Fahey are two of the main winning trainers there, especially Johnston, who has the owners who don’t seem to race for the prize money and don’t mind paying the huge expenses which are accrued nowadays. I think an all-weather track at Catterick or Wetherby would be a big help to the northern boys and I am sure there will be one there within a few years.

The urn and the archway in the yard

The viewing figures comparing the racing coverage of ITV and Channel 4 have been published. There was a big drop in the totals of both those viewing the racing and of those who watched the morning line. The big problem, to my mind, is that the ITV coverage is on ITV4 for the majority of its broadcasts whereas Channel 4 was on mainstream TV. Neither Channel 4 nor ITV will complain though as they are guaranteed advertising, in fact as much as they want by the bookmakers. They are still raking it in though as most people nowadays bet on their phones with all the profits going offshore and no tax going to our racing. We are still awaiting the European agreement to claim this tax anomaly back, and I know I keep going on about it but they couldn’t organise a … in a brewery.