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

Another very dry morning...

Monday, 11 April 2011

"Never let dreams die because life without dreams is like a broken winged bird that cannot fly."

 - Anonymous


First lot walking on the path between the Limekins and Waterhall

Another very dry morning, as it has been all weekend and no real sign of the weather breaking. A few showers are forecast but I am sure that this is just wishful thinking on our behalf. I sent first lot on our usual Monday morning exercise and, whilst waiting for them at the bottom of the Limekilns, I had a good walk on the grass gallops there. What I found was very firm ground, very little grass growth and a few bare patches. In my opinion, we need to shut the Limekins until we get some rain and growth in the grass, as if not we will be struggling all year to find some proper ground. First lot did a canter up the Al Bahathri and second lot went up Long Hill polytrack; we have got an abundance of these tracks and are very lucky that we can keep all the horses on the go.   


Smokey Oakey and Butch lead the string on to the Al Bahathri


Colzium (Wajid)

Our Aintree tipping competition ended with a bang on Saturday, when Phil and I gave you the first and second in the National itself. There were several near misses, especially on my behalf; Jack Cool's neck defeat was pretty grinding. Once again Phil came out on top with a £31.66 profit to his level £10 with MHT ending up minus £50.84. We starred in the Telegraph Fantasy league competition, winning our own Flint Cottage league easily and coming 614th in the national one, out of 29,000. I am told the next Telegraph competition will be on the Derby meeting and we will be trying to have a Flint Cottage league up and running a bit earlier this time. It is great fun and good prizes can be won.
A great race for the National, which has been marred by the adverse press comments over the weekend; a small minority seem to get so much coverage these days on a number of different issues. I hope it has not taken away the gloss from the connections of the winner, as it was a great performance and full marks must go to the placed horses as well. On a very hot day, there was plenty of water for the horses afterwards and reading the paper today they were all fine the next morning. The Aintree executive have done wonders with the track to make it safer and the entry regulations cut out the no-hopers, so there is very little else that can be done. I personally would like to see the fences bigger, as I think it would slow down the whole race, which is run at quite a lick nowadays. Despite all that, over 8 million people watched it and many more had a betting interest in it.  


Brushing (Nikki)


MHT checks all the horses after cantering

Phil and Ian are happy this morning with The Gunners getting back on track but I think beating Blackpool is not too difficult at the moment; unfortunately, with a very square back four and a goalkeeper just about to get his pension, they will be torn apart by any team with a bit of pace about them. The Owls had very little chance against a very good Brighton side, who are destined to be promoted but we look safe now and must build up confidence for next year. If any of you stayed right to the end of the Masters golf last night, you will have done well, as I only just made it past 10 o'clock before falling asleep. It must have been a fantastic last back nine and it just goes to show what the pressure and playing with a very quick player can do for you in these situations. You have to feel for Rory McIlroy but he will be back and hopefully better for the experience.


Cotton Grass (John) and Five Hearts (Lauren)


Izzet (Lee), Cat Island (Abbi) and Astromagick (Rhea)


MHT casts his eye over Cornish Beau and Imjin River at the top of Long Hill