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Plenty of people turned out for the Open Day ...

A nip in the air

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

"Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint."

Mark Twain


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No Rules (Iain) Akula (Liam) Astrolibra (Dan)

It has been a dark morning with plenty of cloud cover and as the light started to come up the rain began to come down. It hasn’t stopped since. It looks like we are in for a very damp day. First lot kept dry within the indoor ride but second lot received a good soaking. I took the jumpers up to the Links for a good fast work-out along the railway.   The flat horses did two good canters on the Warren Hill poly tracks. It’s just after breakfast now and as we speak I can still see the rain out the window. I think the two year olds will stay in the indoor ride where we can get plenty of cantering into them both ways, getting them used to using both front leads. There should be no excuse this year for not being able to handle Chester, only the draw!

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Smokey Oaky (John) leading up second lot

There is an interesting article in the Racing Post today with regard to attendance at British racecourses; they apparently attracted 6.15 million visitors last year. This is a record and an increase for the third season on the trot. As far as spectator sports go we are second only to football, which is a statistic not pushed enough by the powers that be. I am always disgruntled about the lack of mainstream broadcasting coverage we receive, especially when, at the moment, we are being bombarded with television and radio bulletins about the Australian Open Tennis Championship where I feel we have very little chance of winning. The publicity a minority sport is being given is unbelievable and I can never understand why the racing industry cannot be given more radio time. Even the results have now been dropped. It’s only Royal Ascot, Cheltenham and the other major festivals that are really given the time of day. Taking these latest visitor figures as a standard there is clearly a huge following for racing, and if correctly managed can only continue to thrive. We must keep up the pressure for more publicity on the general airwaves.

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Akula (Liam) Astrolibra (Dan)

There is always plenty to be done in the office all year round, as we do all our paperwork both training and stud related out of Flint Cottage. So when the racing is on the quiet side as it is at the moment, and once all the yard work is done, Phil is cracking on with the stallion nominations, passports and every other forms of paperwork related paraphernalia that goes with the stud. The phone is always going and with people popping in and out there is never a dull day. As I always say, if the phone doesn’t ring, nobody wants you.

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Cotton Grass (Ria)

Just an interest and an aside from the dentist's visit yesterday was that he removed a wolf tooth from Smokey Oakey. This is very unusual for an older horse as he is eight this year. The dentist thought it may have been hidden behind one of his front molars; I wonder if this tooth may have been a contributory factor behind his unusual behaviour up at the Links a few weeks ago. Saying this though, he didn’t take kindly to the train that came up alongside him this morning as he galloped round the same piece of turf. It had been foggy last week and although we hadn’t seen anything perhaps he had just sensed that train.

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Cooling off after second lot up at The Links