Monday, May 20, 2013

Sunshine, and its only drawback

Oh, the weather!  Last summer, for all its many faults, did at least come with the consolation that it was very, very rare for trainers to have to worry about running horses on firm(ish) ground.  And that  concern, in a normal good summer, tends to be a big drawback, acting as the one metaphorical cloud on the horizon.  It hasn't really been a worry so far this year - but if we're lucky (in every other respect) it might well be an issue in the coming months.  This week, even, is a case in point, as we have four horses entered, and none of them wants fast ground.

From that point of view, it was slightly alarming to wake yesterday to find that we were back to summery conditions, as these four photographs, all taken yesterday morning, illustrate.  In every other respect, of course, yesterday was a delight, but the sunshine and warm temperatures were slightly concerning.  We have Zarosa (pictured yesterday with Terri as this paragraph's illustration, and also shown through Wasabi's ears in the first paragraph) entered tomorrow and I hope that the sting will still be out of the track at Nottingham (and we should be OK, as it was still rated good to soft today).

In retrospect, though, it might be the case that we ought maybe to have declared for Newcastle instead.  Newcastle was softer but the forecast suggested more chance of rain at Nottingham, which would thus be less likely to dry out - only now I see that they're having (unforecast) torrential rain in Northumberland this evening, so Newcastle could even end up heavy.  If only it was as easy as seeing what the ground is on the morning on which one declares (two days before the race) - that can only be a rough guide as to what it will be two days hence, particularly at this time of year when a nice day or two can dry things out massively.  And the forecasts can often be more of a hindrance than a help.

Anyway, yesterday's sunny conditions didn't last and there was some drizzle overnight, so I hope that we'll be OK.  And I hope that Yarmouth won't be too firm on Friday, and that we'll be happy to run Gift Of Silence and Wasabi there.  Tommy (seen in this paragraph) has had three entries this week, but after Goodwood, when he found ground marginally firmer than good too firm, we won't run him if it's firmer than good.  Two of these three entries have consequently already gone by the board, and we'll just have to wait and see how things go regarding the third of them (at Haydock on Friday).  But if he doesn't run this week, it won't be the end of the world: there are a couple of turf options for him next week, plus one on the AW, and that one will be fine whatever the weather.

No comments: