Saturday, July 01, 2017

Quiet Saturday

The certainty came in today: I fell asleep in front of the TV this afternoon.  Fortunately we had finished morning stables around noon, so I only missed the early races and was back in the land of the living in time to watch the best of the action before and during evening stables.  The Irish Derby was a thriller, and there were some lovely local (to here) triumphs, highlighted by Newmarket Racecourse stables-manager Joyce Wallsgrove, with whom I worked in Andy Turnell's stable when I started work 33 years ago, breeding the Railway Stakes winner.  We also saw some good results for Hugo Palmer (most notably Josephine Gordon riding her first Group winner in the Chipchase Stakes at Newcastle) and the James Fanshawe / Tom Queally run of success continuing in the Northumberland Plate.  Six furlongs last Saturday (Diamond Jubilee with The Tin Man, seen here a couple of days after the win with this two best friends, Oleg Sheyets and Tom Fanshawe) and two miles today.  Impressive.

At a lower level and at the other end of the spectrum, our old friend Cottesloe looked to pull himself up in a seller at Lingfield.  It's disappointing to see him running so badly.  He needs a bit of kidding along and a bit of care because he's an old soldier, both physically and mentally, and doesn't need many excuses to take too much care of himself; but his form has fallen off the edge of a cliff since leaving here, which is disappointing as he hardly ever ran a bad race while he was here.  More happily, another of our former inmates, Hymn For The Dudes, ran a nice race at Yarmouth yesterday on his first run for Lee Smyth.

Everything that Hymn For The Dudes did here, bar his last race when he ran too badly to be true, suggested that he should be able to win a low-grade race, and yesterday he confirmed that, finishing a good second behind the favourite in a Class Six handicap.  It was a bold move to send him from Ireland to race on the east coast of East Anglia, but I hope that his connections recouped their costs with each-way bets.  It would be nice to see him win a race, and hopefully he should do so sooner rather than later.  I hope so, anyway, as I don't like being proved wrong, and I had predicted often enough that he would win a race!

And on the subject of being wrong, the thought came to me today that I stupidly missed out a name from our list of Scotch jockeys: Jason Hart.  He hasn't had the best of luck with injuries since finishing his apprenticeship, but he's in the same boat as so many, just one good horse away from breaking into the top bracket.  It's just that, as we know, whether you're a trainer or a jockey, unless you're working for multi-millionaires, finding that one good horse is easier said than done.  Still, we can continue to live in hope!

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