Friday, 20 March 2015 17:51

omission!

One omission from the news latest was Get Involved ‘s debut for us at Southwell on Monday.

 Get Involved is the lovely Milan horse that was bought to replace poor Point of Attack that we so sadly lost back in the New Year.

 He has been doing everything nicely at home, but we see him as a future chaser so were just hoping for a solid run to start his career over here.

 Absolutely DELIGHTED with him – he jumped like a pro and stayed on well to finish a very creditable third. He will want fences and a more galloping track, but it was a very good performance.

 Really pleased for the group who had been so patient with PoA, only to lose him just as he was coming together. Several of the team there to enjoy his run and think that they certainly have an exciting recruit on their hands.

 

Wednesday, 18 March 2015 10:09

March 18th

Back to reality with a bang on Thursday after Thomas Crapper’s great run on Tuesday. Garrahalish running a super race, (jumping like a stag for John Mathias) was infuriatingly brought down in the Fulke Walwyn chase. Poor Gary really did not deserve it and nor did John who was giving Gary a great ride. Happily both Ok afterwards and live to fight another day, but of course there are always the ‘if only’ thoughts to deal with!

 It’s the third time Gary has been mugged, and the second at Cheltenham, which is so disappointing for one of the best jumpers that you will see – his luck must change.

 If a mistake is your own it’s so much easier to deal with, and being brought down/hampered leave you with a real ‘kicked in the guts’ feeling! However, it could all have been a lot worse, as was brought home by Tom Weston’s’ horrible fall in the same race.

 Cheltenham its usual magic self, amazing atmosphere and we were extremely well looked after in the Brightwells pavilion with a superb lunch, so thank you Cheltenham for that addition to the day, much appreciated by all owners and trainers I am sure.

 Under the Phone to Kempton on Saturday for the Silver Plate race for horses that were balloted out of the Martin Pipe on Friday. He ran a blinder under Joe P jumped like a bunny – a solid effort.

 Eventing on Sunday and a win for ex racehorse Tilt Du Chatelier who Harriet has been re training – delighted to see a horse who did not take to racing having another opportunity at a different job, and very proud of Harriet who has turned a very difficult ride around.

 Lorries in two directions yesterday one heading north, the other south with Routine Procedure and Presenting Paddy – a long way both ways! RP got rather upset in the preliminaries and really ran his race by the time they got to the second hurdle! He stayed on one paced though and jumped very well. Fences beckon!

 Presenting Paddy has been off the track for a while and managed to get rid of Charlie at the second fence on his return run a couple of weeks ago, when his head was going faster than his legs! Not the case yesterday, when he jumped like a stag, and settled well. He did not really appreciate the dead ground and Charlie pulled him up turning in. All positive though and he also behaved on the lorry with Tommy for company which he certainly did not first run!!

 All home safe and sound, although the box driver from Exeter was flagging a bit by the time we got home! A long day.

Thursday, 12 March 2015 11:27

Thursday 12th March

 

What a couple of days!

 Thomas Crapper again did us proud and finished a gallant second in the last race at Cheltenham on Tuesday. Given a great ride by Charlie Poste he jumped and travelled beautifully all the way,

But annoyingly met one just too good up the run in. Its hard not to be disappointed with second again this year, but actually just feel immensely proud of our boy who is an absolute star!

 He seems to love Cheltenham and is not at all fazed by the crowds and general buzz of the place. Back home safely and fine afterwards always the highest priority. Out to play with his friends yesterday and the next step being planned.

 Back to reality and Huntingdon yesterday with little Galactic Power who has been acting as a courtesy car to EPDS Racing whilst Anti Cool has been off, and now has stepped into Money Maids shoes for EPDS 5. Ridden by Charlie’s girlfriend Francesca Nimmo, GP was suited by the savage early pace he jumped superbly and was always in the right place at the right time. Staying on well down the back he swept to the front turning in and went on to win by 5 lengths. Probably an odd sort of day for John Powell who runs the EPDS partnerships as their other horse was second! He did mention that his only thought going to the last was that he hoped that GP did not fall and bring Celtic Artisan down – not a good thought at all!!

 Our first winner for John and his team, and a first winner under rules for Fran. Delighted for both, and also for Kelly who has been a GP fan from the minute he walked into the yard and has looked after him since.

 Off back to battle today with Garrahalish in Fulke Walwyn chase today, was OK till I read the Racing Post – now feeling quite sick!

Monday, 09 March 2015 10:37

Cheltenham week!

Cheltenham here we come!

 Have just endured a nervous couple of hours watching the numbers go round to see if Thomas Crapper would get into the last race tomorrow  - it went to the wire as we were last in, so there are not to many finger nails left! Roger Bravington here to endure the pain with us, and has now gone home to lie down in a darkened room before tomorrow!

 Obviously a huge ask, but he has every right to be there and seems in great form at home.

 Nervous does not even begin to describe how we all feel now, but thing that really matters is a safe round.

 It will be more of the same on Wednesday as Garrahalish will be declared for the Fulke Walwyn Amateur race on Thursday. John Mathias came to have a sit on gorgeous Gary today, (loved him!) and will ride him if we get a run.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015 13:04

24th Feb

A little quiet on the runners’ front, heavy ground and a few abandonments playing havoc with plans, but as always plenty going on.

 Nice to have Troyan back for a slightly belated start to the season –

 Also back to the fray are Storming Harry who has had a frustrating few months with a cut that has taken a long while to heal. He managed to slice open his shin in the field, which then needed all the skill from the team at Three Counties to fix – its looking great now and you would never know how bad it was. Lots of patience from Nigel & Jenny Thick and lots of TLC from the team – especially Kelly & Rachel – it’s lovely to have him back in action. Bally Lagan also back under saddle – he picked up a  small injury last summer, and doesn’t handle soft ground so we have taken our time with him – he did have to go into the field before being ridden as otherwise there was a good chance we would find someone hanging in a tree!! He was as good as gold though. And Joe pleased to back with his partner in crime!

 Anti Cool has also finally made it back into the field – a nervous day – he definitely needed to get the buck out of him, and it’s brilliant to have him back in work. Dance for Livvy ran an improved race at Wolverhampton, Windy Miller ran well at Kempton but was quite sore afterwards Troyan made a noise at Ludlow and will need some attention to his wind, and Presenting Paddys’ brain was going a lot faster than his legs at Southwell after two years off the track, when tipping up at the second. He had a lovely school around after though and won the race – sadly without Charlie!!

 A few changes to the team recently and a big welcome to Kate Pheasant who has joined us this week and also Jordan McCall who has arrived  from The Northern Racing College – never an easy thing to join in the middle of a season, but I am sure they will both settle in quickly with the rest of the troops. Its also frustrating when people choose to leave in the middle of a season – especially those who have been given plenty of opportunities on the riding front – but life goes on and sometimes change is for the best.

 Charlie in as  usual to ride out, joined by a couple of new faces in Fran & Liam who are in most days, Gerald Tumelty is here once a week too – all a big help to the regular crew, and all have plenty to give on the general entertainment front!

Joe had a good winner at Carlisle the other day, which had AP been on would have made headlines! Miles out of it at the last Joe managed to conjure up a miracle run out of Madam Lillibet to get up on the line! Great effort.

 Entries at Cheltenham done for Thomas Crapper & Garrahalish – exciting times!! Entries this week include Under the Phone at Ludlow, The Lion Man, and Wildmore Boy at Newbury.

Monday, 09 February 2015 10:05

Monday 9th Feb

Well after a bit of a winner drought and an outbreak of ‘placeditis’ it was great to have a winner at Kempton on Friday.

 Four runners meant a busy day for the team, and a two lorry trip, which turned into a story on its own!

Under the Phone and Thomas Crapper on the first box, with Holly and me – Kelly and Harriet with the two bumper horses leaving later.

 An uneventful trip with the first two, but the peace shattered as we arrived at the races to a call from the other box to say that they has had a blow out on the motorway! An immediate turn around for me, abandoning Holly with the boys! A few phone calls resulted in a friend dropping everything and going to their assistance with a replacement lorry – a complete motorway closure of the M40 as they swapped lorries, a meeting at Oxford services to swap again onto my lorry and a dash back to the races, leaving Harriet to wait for the breakdown guys to finally appear with a new tyre!

 As always great teamwork, and huge thank you to Roy Hall who came to the rescue, getting to the girls faster than I could to get the horses off the motorway, the motorway police where also great and the team at Kempton just got on with it and had a winner whilst we were on the M25!! Gutted to miss the action, but managed to watch Under the Phone finish on Kelly’s phone whilst in a very slow bit. I think anyone near us must have thought they were next to a couple of lunatics jumping up and down and yelling our heads off, with three barking dogs also joining in!  

 Thrilled for The Tricksters who have had a torrid time of late with losing their previous horse Ballyhooley Boy to colic last year. A good many of the group there to cheer UTP home and other members keeping up with the action from as far away as New York, Burma and India!! The emails afterwards made for some great reading!

 Also chuffed for Joe who rode a super race and was not fazed by taking on the champion jockey going to the last! In fact AP was so disgusted at being beaten by Joe that he announced his retirement the next day!!

This winner reduced Joes'  claim to 7lb – he is well worth it and deserves to get a lot more opportunities.

 Thomas Crapper was having a run before Cheltenham, and had a nice jump round and a gallop – track probably not suiting him too well – he prefers a hill in his way!

 The two bumper horses both disliking the sticky ground. Myroundorurs is a lovely, good moving baby chaser, he pulled far too hard for his own good, and will want better ground and has to learn to settle. Our first runner for Andrew and Jane Nicholls, who we are delighted to be training for, welcome to them and we hope to have lots of success for them.

 The Lion Man ran well for a first run, he is a replacement horse for John and Margaret Cooper who own Dancing Daffodil with us. DD is off to stud, so ‘Roary’ (I know it’s a good one !!) has some big hoof prints to fill!

 Thankfully no drama on the way home, and to The Blue Boar for a celebration steak when we got home. Everyone far too tired to cook, and as usual the pub very accommodating regarding cooking late for us. Thoroughly recommended if you are in the area.

Happily all the horses home safely and fine the next day.

 

Friday, 30 January 2015 17:43

Friday 30th January

An absolutely frantic week – not enough hours – or days!

 Very quiet on the runners front as heavy ground and lots of unsuitable races, but lots else going on.

Ireland on Tuesday for me to treat a lot of backs. Great fun to go to different yards, meet different riders – and all for £9.99 each way! Charlie over on Wednesday morning and it took him less time to fly from Birmingham than it took me to get from Monkstown (south Dublin) to the airport! Awful traffic, but got there in the end.

A rapid drive to Wexford followed and a usual whirlwind tour, looking at some nice, and some not so nice horses. Charlie rode the ones we liked, and we drove a lot of miles! Screeched back into the airport just in time for some alcoholic sustenance before catching the ten o’clock flight back. Exhausting but fun!

 Cheltenham on Saturday for racing and the sales. Garrahalish hating the sticky dead ground and not really travelling like his usual self when another horse jumped into the back of him – knocked Gary sideways, and Charlie out of the side-door – game over, Gary had a nice school round the rest of the way and was none the worse for the outing. Nothing untoward showing up afterwards so we can only really put his slightly disappointing run down to the ground.

 My great team showing their colours on Saturday, with Holly giving up half of her afternoon off to come and collect Gary from the races. I took him in the big lorry, but had to get back for the sales, so she saved me having to go back and forth so many times. Appreciated. Kelly doing the airport run too as I could not take Harriet – they are great and are happy to help out with anything. We could not manage without them.

 We are currently looking for a new recruit to join us as our horse numbers are up, so if you can ride well and want to join a great team do give us a call.

 The sales are always exciting and we had a couple to find. Our priority was to find a horse for the Point of Attack Partnership who so sadly lost their namesake a few weeks ago. Several of the members in attendance to have a look before and after racing, and we eventually managed to secure Get Involved a smart horse by Milan out of a Strong Gale mare. Already a winner of a point in Ireland he is a hugely exciting recruit for a lovely partnership who deserve a bit of luck. Also a lovely Kayf Tara called Some Finish, who has been placed pointing and is for sale.

 Always great to have some new faces to make plans and dreams for, and particularly pleased with these two. Also nice to see so many of the Point of Attackers here on Sunday morning to wet their new baby’s head! A very good lunch with Gareth Conway, Lynne Tunnicliffe, Gerald and Sue Hart and Chris, Lou & Lucca Dickin (who thought they had come to a mad house for the weekend!)at the Blue Boar afterwards.

 Also delighted to welcome Andrew and Jane Nicholls to the team, they have taken over ownership of Myroundorurs, a five year old that Charlie & I bought before Christmas, who has been third in a point and who is working well at home. We wish them the best of luck with what looks like a very nice type.

 Also pleased that John & Margaret Cooper have bought a half share in The Lion Man to replace the irreplaceable Dancing Daffodil who is off to stud this time.

 Robert Cockerall & Hazel West here on Tuesday to see Get Involved (whom they loved), and Brett Cahill and team here to see Presenting Paddy today. Good effort from all because the wind has been fair howling up here this week and its pretty cold. The horses happy to stay in today rather than go out for a wallow!

 

We are getting a really super bunch of horses up together now, and although the majority are relatively young, and will need some time before they are winning, it’s hugely exciting having so much young talent here.

Equally pleased to have Anti Cool off the sick list and back with a saddle on this week. Megan sitting pretty tight a few times as the lovely ‘Andy’ showed us just how pleased he is to be out again! Young Lou also back on the move again and also pleased to have Rachel off the sick list after fracturing her wrist before Christmas.

Monday, 19 January 2015 00:00

Monday 19th Jan

A busy week, but only a couple of runners. Anti Cool to the vets for a 12 week X-ray on his cannon bone, first thing on Monday morning. Good news on that front as it looks to be healing well and he can start walking again. After 12 weeks in his box he is pretty fresh, and pleased to be in action again, not sure that the team are so pleased at the thought of sitting tight! Bally Lagan also about to start into some light work after a good scan, so plenty of glue needed!

 It’s always gutting when horses get injured, and the weeks and months stretch out in front of you to wait for them to mend, but actually it goes surprisingly quickly and it’s also rewarding to see them back in work and feeling that we have done a good job with their rehab. Of course none of this is possible without their incredible, patient owners who listen to what is needed and give us a free rein to nurse their athletes back to full health.  

Nice to see Mrs and Mrs Bowcett here on Tuesday to see Anti Cool and Galactic Power. Gareth Conway and John O’Neill also here to chat through the aftermath of losing poor Point of Attack, and John and Margaret Cooper also here to make some plans as we have decided to retire the lovely Dancing Daffodil to stud. She has been a great fun horse for us, winning 5 races and being placed many times too. Now to decide who will be the lucky husband!

 Ludlow on Thursday was as wet as I have seen it – Routine Procedure improving hugely after a couple of disappointing runs – the addition of a tongue tie clearly having the desired effect, he travelled and jumped much better and finished a creditable sixth. RP is a stunning looking horse and although that does not guarantee him to be a star he is a baby chaser and any hurdle form will be a bonus. Wildmoor Boy went off favourite after his excellent Cheltenham run, and all looked to be going according to plan until they turned for home, when crossing the chase track he appeared to stop dead. Dropping to last it looked as if something was seriously amiss, but then ran on to finish fifth. Whether the softer ground caught him out for a few strides it’s hard to tell, but he is clearly still a lovely horse, possibly not suited by the sharper track. Happily both horses home fine, even after a bloody awful journey home in a howling gale, with bits of trees flying in all directions!

 Charlie and I are off to Ireland to look at a few on Wednesday – always a hectic day, involving a lot of driving and trying to find the next star! Entertaining too – watch this space for what we find!   

Wednesday, 07 January 2015 00:00

Sad Day

RIP Point of Attack

The crappest of crap days on Monday, with the loss of Point of Attack. A freak accident in his stable at evening stables left the team here reeling and his lovely owners in shock. Declared to run the next day, ‘George’ was in great shape both physically and mentally and had, what my Dad would have called ‘the lion look’. Sadly it was not to be and we lost him. We all accept the risks of dealing with and riding these wonderful creatures, and like most racing yards give them the best of everything, in terms of care, but also our love and attention. This was certainly true of PoA who arrived as a nervous and very thin horse, but who had blossomed into a confident athlete, with the care of our team, and the patience of the partnership who owned him. Our conditional jockey Joe had looked after him from day one, and been a huge part of the change in him. We had not seen the best of him by far.

 Condolences to all concerned.

Friday, 02 January 2015 00:00

January 2nd

Happy New Year!

 A quiet one for us spent with our neighbours so although some damage done to some bottles of fizz New years' morning dawned without the statutory headache – more than can be said for the youngest member of the household who saw the New Year in at a young farmer’s party – enough said!!

 Off to Cheltenham with Wildmoor Boy, who is the first foal of Simple Glory who ran so well for Cliff Beech & Brian Wilkinson a few years ago. Only small, he has been showing plenty at home but this was a very hot affair and we thought a mid div finish would be a great start. Immaculately behaved in all the preliminaries we could not believe our eyes as he came cruising down the hill and turned in in front! Despite our best efforts of encouragement from the floor he just got collared up the run in and finished a truly excellent third. Delighted for Cliff & Brian. Sadly Cliff not there in person as he has been unwell – but a near perfect tonic to cheer him up! What an exciting horse for the future – the family have two more half brothers to come as well so great encouragement for the breeding side for them!

 With Timon’s Tara also running so well its really exciting thinking of what we have to come for the future from our bumper horses – and a few still to run too!

 No runners over the weekend, Joe Palmowski has set off to Ayr for one ride today so a long drive for him!

 Next week looking reasonable busy so hope the weather will let us keep going after losing a couple of meetings this week.  

Wednesday, 31 December 2014 00:00

new years eve

Frustrating to lose both Haydock and Warwick this week where we should have had runners – but very cold and frosty here although  it has really warmed up this evening. Hopefully Cheltenham will be fine for tomorrow, when Wildmoor Boy makes his racecourse debut in a hot looking bumper. Sadly Cliff Beech under the weather with a bad cold so unable to come to see the first of his homebreds on the track.

 

A quiet New Year for us – most of the troops off to a young farmers party so it’s a good job we are having a slightly later start in the morning!

 

 

 

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Tuesday, 30 December 2014 00:00

Tuesday 30th Dec

Well the festivities nearly over for another year – thank goodness! As usual Christmas seemed to come all in a rush – despite having 12 months warning I was really behind myself this year, and a frantic week before did not help!

 Dontminddboys showing huge improvement to finish sixth at Towcester – the handicapper having a bit of a laugh and giving a mark of 113 for his efforts – extremely harsh.

 Two days at Ascot resulted in two visits to the winner’s enclosure, but in the second spot – I know you should not be disappointed with second, and on so many levels we were not – BUT…..

 Garrahalish running really well again to finish second, Thomas Crapper also his usual rock solid self – also second. Both to what are very good horses. Gary up four pounds for his efforts, TC down one.

 Under The Phone a shade disappointing, to finish eighth but Charlie reporting that he hated the tacky soft ground. He has really got his jumping together now though and will be back to himself on a better surface.           

Timon’s Tara running a blinder to finish sixth in the listed bumper – she is shaping up to be a really special filly – delighted with her.

 The long trek to Fakenham on a Sunday - a frustrating day as Charlie and Point Of Attack parted company on the final circuit – annoying as he was jumping really well – first time over fences, when one fell in front of him which I think distracted him momentarily, and he put in a short one, hit the fence and with Newton’s Law of action and reaction taking over, Charlie overtook George in mid air!! Happily both fine and lots to like about the run to that point. Four hours home in a big side wind was not to be enjoyed!

 A rather frustrating end to what has on the whole been a good year, sad to report that our star Restless Harry has picked up a stress fracture and will be out for a couple of months. He was lame after Cheltenham – worrying as Harry is rarely wrong – and a bone scan revealed the problem. It should be a straightforward healing process as no joint involvement but with plenty of mud about its gutting to have him on the sidelines – he will be back!

 Anti Cool is mending well after his set back and really looking forward to seeing him in action, Young Lou also off for a time after picking up an injury at Ludlow, again she will be fine but frustrating to miss a big chunk of the middle of the season. Wonderful patient owners in all cases – AC & YL being a very patient patients – the same cannot be said about Harry!!

 Rachel also on the sidelines after picking up a fractured wrist when getting squashed against a wall by a rather rude new horse who has yet to learn any manners. Toby’s sister Daisy stepping seamlessly into the breach and coming full time whilst Rachel mending – many thanks to Daisy – we may not let her go again as she has fitted in so well.  

 Gutting to see Queen of The Stage going to the sales and then winning again a week later.

 No Haydock today and Warwick must be in doubt tomorrow – there would be no chance of racing here today, there is a heavy frost, although happily the gallop doing better than the track at Southwell, and business as usual on the exercise front, although some very cold fingers and toes.

 The team Christmas party was at the Blue Boar who looked after us very well – a few looking a bit steady the next day, and a slightly later start was a good plan on my part! Thank you for all the donations to the drinks fund which was all put to good use. Thank you also for all the goodies that arrived over the festive period! All much appreciated, although the office did resemble an off licence at one point!

 All of the team got to where they wanted to be for Christmas day which was great, but also meant that our Christmas was diverted from Stow on The Wold to here, and that the designated cook was me! We had a lovely day though – always great o have a bit of family time, especially as everyone seems to be so busy these days that it’s hard to find eth time for a catch up.

 Cheltenham on New years day with Wildmoor Boy having his first outing – a bonny horse out of the lovely Simple Glory who won several races for us.

Tuesday, 23 December 2014 00:00

Happy Christmas

Friday, 05 December 2014 00:00

Friday 5th December

A really busy day at Ludlow on Wednesday with six runners! It should have been seven but one not quite satisfactory scope held the numbers down!

 Brian on duty with the first three and Kelly and Megan then the others with myself Holly & Harriet following on a bit later.

 The home team left with plenty to do as both Joe & Toby riding too – but a great team effort to get through a mad sort of day!

 The girls at the races doing a fantastic job and winning no less than four out of a possible five BTOs, and to be honest Holly was robbed in the bumper too. Possibly the judges thought we had had enough prizes, but Timon’s Tara was clearly the best turned out but the prize went elsewhere to a turn out that I had best not comment on!!

 Galactic Power (BTO for Kelly) looked fantastic in his EPDS green, was first up and then ran a blinder to finish a flying fourth – only ¾ length off the third – pleasing as he is improving with each run. Toby giving him a good ride. Joe rode Jackfield in the same race – a satisfactory run for first time over hurdles.

 Be My Witness (BTO for Megan) managed to eject Toby three out when looking held – both fine after the race.

 Kitegen (BTO for Holly) hated the dead ground and will now have a break and be ready for some better ground in the spring.

 Under The Phone (BTO for Holly) ran a super race and finished flying to be second under Joe. He hit a bit of a flat spot down the back, and then ran on really well up the straight. Great to see The Tricksters having some fun at last after all the frustrations that they have had over the last few seasons. UTP is a gem, and has a great character as well as having plenty of ability.

 Timon’s Tara following up her great first run again ran a really solid race, but hit traffic problems all the way, and ended up a rather frustrating fourth. She is shaping up into a serious filly who would have nearly won given a clear run.

 Frustrating not to have winner, but much to be taken from the day, and really proud of the team at getting everything done with smiles and good humour, both at the races and for Paige & Rachel who held the fort at home along with Harriet T and Georgia who came to help out. Thanks to them all.

 The journey to Ludlow does not improve and in a lorry is worse involving about a million gear changes – so very happy to come home to huge curry kindly cooked by my Mum, which fed everyone, safe to say the exhaustion had set in by then and everyone happy to collapse in a heap and chew the day over along with the curry!

 No runners over the weekend, and some winter eventing for a change tomorrow.

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