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The Olympics begin

Friday, 27 July 2012

"The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part. Just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle."

Pierre de Coubertin.

26kathleen

Jennifer Jay, Barbsiz and Silk Scarf

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Smokey Oakey & Topamichi

A much cooler morning with a thin covering of cloud. I have done three canters with most of the horses  and, for a change, went on the Town Sand and then did two canters on Bury Hills. The artificial surface is riding very well on those canters at present. There was no-one about at all on Bury Hills - it was like having your own private training ground.

We have one runner today at Ascot - Mystery Star in the two-mile handicap at 4.05, the very famous Brown Jack Stakes. Phil has just told a very amusing anecdote re Brown Jack, who won six races at Royal Ascot. Jockey Steve Donoghue swore that after his sixth success the horse turned his head and winked at him as he unsaddled.

Although Mystery Star isn't quite as good as Brown Jack he has everything in his favour today and we are hopeful that he may wink at Neil Callan afterwards!

I see the Levy Board has agreed to increase the number of fixtures for which they will be providing financial assistance next year, opening the way for even more meetings. I just hope there are enough horses to go round and that their insistence that this move will increase the betting turnover, and the levy, is right. There is so much racing and no sign of it contracting because the racecourses can't fail to make a profit on any day. They need to understand the horse population will be reducing even further if the prize-money doesn't increase dramatically, and I can't  see any hope of that in the near future.

Mystery_2

       Mystery Star, who runs today, with Akula