Don't forget to look at our Horses for Sale and Lease pages...

The third good morning in a row...

Wednesday, 09 March 2011


"Anger is not only inevitable but it is necessary. For in its place is indifference, the worst of all human qualities."

 - Anonymous



Barwick (Colin) and Akula (Butch) set off at the bottom of Warren Hill

The third good morning in a row and, in fact, the least cold, as there is no frost on the ground and the grass is beginning to grow. I don't like the look of the forecast though and just hope if it is going to be cold again that it doesn't last long. After yesterday's exercise, we have been having a relatively easy morning with one steady canter up Warren Hill.


Izzet (John), Astroverdi (Ashley) and Imjin River (Nikki)

Both yesterday's runners did not handle the surface at Southwell, which seems to be deteriorating quite quickly. Paul Hanagan told me it was mainly sand, which was dusty and funny underneath. It is a shame that Southwell persists with the fibresand, as if they dug it up and replaced it with a polytrack-type surface, it would improve it no end. Southwell is the best laid-out, all-weather track by far with a long straight and sweeping turns. It is well-situated in the Midlands for everybody, both North and South and, if only they would put the investment in, it would pay great dividends.


Star Commander (John) and Smokey Oakey (Butch)

I must comment on the great Tote jackpot winner yesterday at Exeter, who won £1.4m for a £6 stake - it just shows what could happen. I have to declare a great interest here, as Derek and Rosie Scott, who trained the last winner Lupita, are great friends of ours; Rosie and Angie go back to when they were at school together. Derek has been a stalwart of the south-west racing industry, as a jockey in his younger days (he was a very good pilot and rode the winner of the 'Mildmay') and now as a trainer and a long time steward of both professional racing and point-to-points. They run the East Lynch Stud,, just outside Minehead, where they stand both Franklin's Gardens and Babodana. Rosie does all the work with Lupita, both riding and leading-up and deserves great credit for producing the mare, after quite a long lay-off, spot on for the day. In fact, Angie and I enjoyed the win as much as we do one of our own. I hope the winner of the jackpot said a big 'thank you' to them.


Mystery Star (Iain), Old Boy Ted (Colin) and Brushing (Nikki)

Another thing to comment on today, which is very serious indeed, is that if you read page 8 of the Racing Post, you will see that Betfair have done what we always knew they would do and moved their business offshore to avoid tax. They have joined the exodus of Ladbrokes, William Hill, Victor Chandler, etc. who have moved to Gibraltar, where tax on gross profits on betting is 1% against 15% in Britain. The loss to the British racing industry in Levy will keep increasing unless the Government comes to its senses and passes legislation to stop these companies from betting overseas. This loophole must be addressed at once.


Tawny Way's filly foal by Halling


Azure Mist with her colt foal also by Halling

Doom and gloom in the office this morning and plenty of muttering about bad refereeing but, at least, I can crow as The Owls managed a rare away win at Oldham! A bit different than the New Camp.