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Saint Anthony and Velvet Vision run today and True Calling tomorrow ...

An absoutely perfect morning....

Monday, 15 August 2011

"Success is never found. Failure is never fatal. Courage is the only thing."

- Winston Churchill


150807Ely Cathedral in the background from the top of Long Hill

An absolutely perfect morning and it was a morning when you were happy to be alive and very lucky to be doing the job that I am doing. It was quite amazing, as at the weekend, I picked up and read a book called Royal Newmarket, which is a history of the town from the beginning and its association with royalty. One of the pictures in the book showed Ely Cathedral in the distance and this morning was the clearest that I have ever seen it. Also, and on the first page of this book, there was a paragraph on the indoor ride that Lord Exeter built in the 1830's, which is the one that we own and use now. It is a most interesting book and highly recommended if you can get hold of a copy.
Now back to the present. It was marvellous to look down on the town from the top of Long Hill as our horses cantered up there this morning. You could see Tattersalls, the Rowley Mile racecourse, many training yards and studs, strings of horses making their way up and down Warren Hill, mixed in with people travelling to work - a magical sight!   

150818Ted Spread (Butch) cantering on Long Hill

Four runners tonight at Yarmouth, where the first race starts at 5.20 pm. I am sure there will be a good crowd, as there seems to have been more holidaymakers this season. I think rather than go abroad a lot of people have plumped for the English seaside, which is good for business.
We start off with Colzium in the 6.20 pm race. He has been a bit disappointing this year and the ground will not be entirely in his favour but I think the fitting of the blinkers will help and he could earn some prize money. He will be schooled next week and I hope the hurdles will show him in a better light. He has ability but, as yet, we have not seen the full extent of it. Five Hearts runs next in the 7.20 pm race, the 7 furlong handicap. She has run three times, making this her first run in a handicap but I am hoping she can handle this ground, as she is another who likes it on the easy side. Comrade Bond is our next runner at 7.50 pm and he ran well when just pipped on the line at Brighton last time. Although he is down a furlong tonight, I don't think it will inconvenience him and he should be in the shake-up. He is the only one of tonight's runners who will definitely like the ground. Our final runner is Astromoon in the 8.20 pm race, the mile and six maiden handicap, where I think we are playing for second, as Native Colony looks the one to beat but Astromoon is in good form and you never know what can happen in these staying races.

150830Locum (Lee)

The completion of the safety review for the Grand National by the BHA has made headlines on the front of the Racing Post today. They are talking about modifying the fences, shortening the run to the first and removing the drops on the landing side of fences. I don't know who they consulted but if you read the comments in the paper today from people who know, like Donald McCain, Tony McCoy, John Francome and Jim McGrath,  you would see that there is very little that needs changing. If you lower the fences they will go more quickly and more horses will be killed, if you shorten the run to the first fence there will be more false starts and if you remove the drops, any more than has already been done, the whole race resorts to being just another handicap. Aintree is a top class racecourse, which is well run, has good ground and common sense should prevail. If we listened to all the rubbish spoken from the antis we will finish up having a four mile flat race. This is the Grand National they are talking about, the one every trainer, jockey and owner wants to win - don't mess with it any more is my recommendation.     

150837Brushing (Charles)


150848First lot walking home under the watchful eye of the trainer



150851Shomberg (Lauren)


150863On The Rocks (Abbi)


150870       150871

Vegas and Bob, the two kittens at Exeter Ride, playing and learning to sweep the yard!