Velvet Vista runs at 5.45 followed by Astrojewel in the 8.45 ...

Another cold morning....

Monday, 10 January 2011


"Most of the shadows of this life are caused by our standing in our own sunshine."
  - Ralph Waldo Emerson


Kinsya leads some of the two year olds 

Another cold morning with quite a sharp frost and the biting wind makes it feel 10 degrees colder. We still have quite a few staff off, both on holiday and ill and the little band that are here are working their socks off. We could do with two or three more full time workers and it is about this time of year, just after Christmas, that people start new jobs. We have had a few apply in the last week and let's hope one or two are suitable. All the horses look in great shape and are exercising well. 


Smokey Oakey (Iain) and Colzium (Abbi)

There was some very good racing at the weekend both at Chepstow and Sandown but the ground looked atrocious and all the horses were finishing very tired. The highlight was obviously Tony McCoy winning the Welsh National on Synchronized. It looks like he will be aimed at The Grand National at Aintree and if the ground is on the easy side, he may be capable of giving A.P. his second National victory. I liked the singing of the Welsh national anthem before the race with the charity children involved. You often get the racecourses putting on gimmicky things but, in this case, it looked very well done and for a good cause.


Watch Chain (Steve)

The daily tariffs have just been issued to all trainers, informing us of what the Horsemen's group have developed and very good they are too. With the racecourses getting much bigger media rights' payments, some courses need to be putting a fair proportion of this back into prize money. Now we have the figures, both trainers and owners will be pulling together to achieve the right result. If we do not enter our horses in the races that are not up to the right value, it will soon make the racecourses think and start to give us a proper return. Some of them are thinking that a few will break ranks and enter but let me assure them, this will be a very few, ill-informed people; this is a now or never situation and must be won. I know my owners are 100% behind this initiative and we will be on the front line.


The Act One ex Highbrook colt (Nikki)

Phil and Ian are not saying much this morning, as Arsenal are incredibly lucky to survive to fight another day after their match against Leeds on Saturday. Even one of their players to his great credit said he was very sorry for diving, trying to get a penalty. It is one of the tragedies of the modern game that the players would rather be in show business than sport - what actors most of them are! The best bit of the whole weekend was that the The Owls are through to the fourth round after beating Bristol City 3-0; a team from the Championship and they didn't resort to play acting to win, just plenty of kick and rush!


The Piccolo ex Sosumi filly (Hannah)