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I will say it again, prize money needs to be increased ...

The first day of Aintree

Thursday, 12 April 2012

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”
Theodore Roosevelt.

12-_The_Guvnor_and_Mike_Bowering_watching_second_lotThe Guv'nor and Mike Bowring watching second lot up the turf

Mike Bowring is an owner who has horses both in training and at stud

A coolish morning with no breeze or rain over night. After yesterday’s busy morning we have been on Bury Side having a canter up the turf on Warren Hill. It rode very well and although a bit short of grass, it is so good for the horses to get their feet back into the turf. The polytrack  surfaces are all well and good, and they are brilliant during the winter, but there is nothing to compare with cantering on proper turf. We are lucky enough to have it in abundance in Newmarket; we just need the weather to make it perfect.

       12-_Eanans_Bay_Benjamin_-_French_apprentice        12-_Dine_Out_Justine_French_apprentice

                   Eanans Bay (Benjamin)                                                   Dine Out (Justine)

Benjamin and Justine are young apprentices visiting Flint Cottage from France

It is the first day of the Aintree Festival today, with Big Buck’s on the verge of history. It should be a fantastic day. These three days are very different to Cheltenham, you have the same standard of horses but, the course and race goers are very different. It’s a bit more laid back and fun with a much more relaxed atmosphere. Phil and I have had our annual tipping competition which you can find below; I hope we can put a few pointers your way. But don’t take any great notice just follow your own instincts.

Aintree – Day One

MHT:                                                Phil:

Forecast:

2:00                                                  

                                                    Big Buck’s                                                            Big Buck’s

                                                    Smad Place                                                         Poungach

2:30                                                                       

                                                   Countrywide Flame                                         Pearl Swan

3:05                                                                       

                                                   Burton Port                                                         Riverside Theatre

3:40                                                                       

                                                   Roulez Cool                                                         Gwanako

4:15                                                                   

                                                   Free World                                                           Thanks For That

4:50                                                                      

                                                   Alasi                                                                       Pepite Rose

5:25                                                                       

                                                   Gullinbursti                                                         Son Of Flicka

12-_Cat_Island_Emily

Cat Island (Emily)

If you get chance to go to Aintree, a must is to get there early and walk The National course, which is very well signed. If you are lucky enough to be able to, do take time to go on a proper tour with a guide, as they will talk you around the whole course. The fences - although now modified from what they once were - are still unique, and ones like Beaches Brook, The Canal Turn and The Chair are fantastic to see. Every jockey with a licence has the burning ambition to win The National, and you saw two years ago what it meant to Tony McCoy. Just to get round is an achievement but to win it is a life changer.

12-_Comrade_Bond_Steve_leading_up_the_two_year_olds

Comrade Bond (Steve) leading the two year olds up the Warren Hill turf