The final day of Cheltenham with the running of the Gold Cup ....

An absolutely glorious morning....

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

"Everything has it's beauty but not everyone sees it"

- Confucius


First lot on their way to the Racecourse car park

An absolutely glorious morning, as befits the first day of Royal Ascot. It is quite muggy and very warm with the forecast being for a lovely day today but then showers and a bit cooler for the rest of the week. We have had a cracking morning with the horses doing fast work on the Peat Moss and, for the first time for a long time, I took some two year olds across to a gallop we call 'Between the Banks'. The ground there was like a carpet and they all learnt a considerable amount from the work.

14-06-06The gallopers cross the Rowley Mile racecourse

14-06-12Mystery Star (Charles) and Ted Spread (Butch) set off galloping with the Devil's Dyke in the background

Our runners yesterday didn't hit the headlines but we learnt a bit and they will both be performing better next time. What a fantastic first day at Royal Ascot and I think this is the best day to go, as we start with three Group 1's, followed by a Group 2. The whole of the racing world has been looking forward to this day with the reappearance, after his blistering Guineas win, of Frankel. We have seen him most days cantering on the Heath and he looks in tremendous shape. Every race is a championship and there shouldn't be many excuses, as the ground should be perfect. I just hope everybody enjoys it as much as we are going to do.

14-06-22MHT watching first lot come up the Peat Moss

14-06-25Star Commander (Nikki), Ron (Charles) and Old Boy Ted (Ashley)

Phil and I are having our annual tipping competition throughout the Ascot week to a level £10 stake. My godson, Sam, has told us he can do better than two old timers so, for once only, we are giving him a chance. The only way he will be allowed to continue is if he beats us. What a way to encourage a godson.... gambling! 

Royal Ascot tipping competition

Today's selections are as follows:  

                         MHT                                      Phil                                     Sam (Mark's godson)

2.30 pm -    Goldikova                                         Canford Cliffs                                             Canford Cliffs
3.05 pm -    Bridgetown                                      Monsieur Chevalier                                 Sole Power
3.45 pm -    Frankel                                              Frankel                                                          Frankel
4.25 pm -    Gatepost                                           Power                                                             Fulbright
5.00 pm -   Australia Day                                  Veiled                                                            Junior
5.35 pm -    Wolfgang                                          Worthington                                              Hamza

14-06-38Miss Wendy (Rhea) and Astrovenus (Dan)

14-06-43Izzet leads the two year olds 'Between the Banks'

There has been a bit of a campaign this week to get Redcar to see sense over the tariffs, which they have set woefully below what they should be. It is very disappointing to see the entries and I cannot understand the trainers, jockeys and owners, who have so many opportunities to run but still enter to race for a pittance. It would only take one or two meetings for the message to get through properly and common sense would prevail. Redcar is a lovely track with good facilities for the lads and horses, good viewing for the public but they just don't seem to understand the seriousness of the situation at present.

14-06-54Walking back across the Flat after galloping