Thursday, February 07, 2013

Outing tomorrow

Great excitement: we're going to have a runner tomorrow.  Frankie (Douchkirk) will be off to Kempton for a novices' handicap hurdle.  It'll be a tough race with a full field, but all the races are very competitive at the moment, so much racing having been lost in January (more than in the entire year in 2011) that there is a big backlog of horses trying to get a run.  So one just runs when one can - and, for Frankie, that means at 2.50 tomorrow afternoon.  He seems very well so I hope will give a good account of himself - and at least he will find the wintery conditions less wintery than the day last month on which I took this photograph of him (on the right as we look at it) alongside Hugh and Oscar on our return from exercise.

Frankie jumped really well when he ran (in a stronger race) at Plumpton four and a half weeks ago so I hope that we should have no worries in that respect; but, even so, it will have done him no harm to have had a refresher course over a line of hurdles up at the Links this morning, courtesy of William, who had called in on his way to Huntingdon, where he has two rides.  William also schooled Alcalde (over fences) on whom he is pictured here on the way home, skirting the frozen puddles.  I'd have taken a photograph when we were still on the Heath as that would have made a nicer shot, except that Frankie, whom I was riding, was feeling very fresh still and it seemed more prudent to keep both hands on the reins until we were on safer territory.  A good sign?

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