The new game machines are set to go in the shops ...

A very cold, showery morning

Monday, 03 May 2010


''Champions aren't made in the gym. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them - a desire, a dream, a vision.''

Muhammad Ali


A very cold, showery morning, in fact, at the time of writing this, it is bright sunshine over the yard but pouring with rain. It looks like it is going to be a mixture of both all week and it showed that with fast ground for Saturday and then slow ground for Sunday.

Imjin River

It just goes to show the unpredictability of racing and how your luck can go hot-and-cold with the two big races at the weekend. The 2000 guineas winner, Makfi, was a throw-out, from Hamdan al Maktoum's batallion of horses, from Marcus Tregonning's yard and bought for just 26,000 guineas last October, in the Horses-in-training sale at Newmarket. One man's bad luck was another man's jackpot and it also highlights that money does not buy everything - what a great leveller the sport is. It was no fluke by the winner and he looks a cracking colt, as do the next three home, who were all bought at auction for under £50,000 each.

The 1000 guineas was obviously spoilt by putting the stalls in the centre and the race splitting into two groups; the horses on the far side had no chance whatsoever and all the action was on the stands' side. The subsequent stewards' enquiry was absolutely correct. Those of you, who can remember the Babodana incident a few years ago, when the same thing happened will understand the stewards' reasoning. The only point to remember in these cases, where horses are taken across the track, is the winning distance: if Henry Cecil's horse had won by more than a short head, say a head or a neck, she would have kept the race but when it is only a short head, there is reasonable doubt as to who would have won, if they had kept straight. 



Three runners today, at Warwick, as we have taken Watch Chain out because the ground has gone soft. Moon Lightning runs in the first, the apprentice race; he ran well at Yarmouth first time out and I hope he can run well here. In the 5.10pm, we run Astrovenus; she had a couple of runs last year, I am not too sure about the ground, as the family tend to like it faster and I think the Michael Stoute horse is a worthy favourite but, hopefully, she can run well. Finally, Blinka Me runs in the 5.40pm, he ran well enough at Southwell, has improved a bit for that and if he handles the ground could get in the shake-up.

Walking home off Long Hill

I have had plenty of stick already this morning about the match on Sunday but the team tried its best and were lucky to have got another chance with Palace being deducted 10 points. I am already starting to relish games against Yeovil and Hartlepool, we can only go one way now, let us hope the financial situation at Hillsborough sorts itself out, that the manager stays and that the players show as much passion as they did yesterday if all those things happen we will soon be on our way back up again.

Smokey Oakey

Comrade Bond