Wednesday, November 06, 2019


I'm glad that Chelmsford is local and that our runners there on Saturday night weren't too late (5.00 and 6.00) so it wasn't too late a night.  I think we got home around 8.15 and I got back in the house around 9.30, which wasn't too bad.  (And then there was the Breeders' Cup to watch, although I couldn't make it through to the Classic and watched that the next morning).  As I then had a night without sleep on Monday, covering Flemington's Melbourne Cup Day card with Tony Ennis on Sky Sports Racing, it would have been difficult had I had too shortened a night on Saturday.  As it was - helped, of course, by how exciting the Flemington racing was - I got though the night well on Monday/Tuesday and even coped with the drive home too.  But I'm tired now and won't linger writing this blog as I want to go to bed.

Chelmsford was relatively satisfactory.  I went there thinking that if both horses finished second last - ie if neither finished last - it would have been a good night.  The Simple Truth had finished a distant last in both his races, and Ethics Boy had finished last in every gallop in which he had ever participated, so for each of them beating a horse would have been a step in the right direction.  And, indeed, they did both finish second last, so that was OK - although it would have been even nicer had each horse beaten two (or more) rivals rather than merely one!

There were a couple of very interesting stewards' enquiries that day (ie 'controversial' ones in which it would be easy to say that the wrong result was reached) but I haven't got the energy to analyse the wins of Global Storm at Ascot and Diego Du Charmil at Ascot, so I'll restrict myself to quoting a tweet which I posted on Saturday afternoon, referring to Global Storm's race: "You'll never see a better illustration of the shortcomings of our rules.  It is absurd that Global Storm kept the race - but under the rules (which say that runner-up would only be promoted if we're certain that he would have won but for the interference) it was the correct decision.".

As regards moving on to other subjects, what I'll do is restrict myself to following up a train of thought which I started in the last chapter.  I was wrong in saying that the first Breeders' Cup winner had cost 5,000 euros as a yearling because I didn't realise that the Marathon Stakes (the winner of which, Itsinthepost, cost 5,000 euros as a yearling) is no longer a Breeders' Cup race.  But that doesn't really contradict my point about the meeting giving us plenty of evidence to suggest that the spending of fortunes on horses isn't always the act of genius that we're led to believe.  And there was plenty more evidence to come as the meeting progressed.

British Idiom took her record to three-from-three (including two Grade One wins) in the BC Juvenile Fillies, having cost $40,000 as a yearling.  Storm The Court, winner of the BC Juvenile, cost $5,000 as a yearling.  Belvoir Bay, winner of the BC Turf Sprint, cost 20,000 guineas as a yearling.  BC Spring winner Mitole, who has now retired to stud with a career record of four Grade One wins and only one defeat, cost $20,000 as a yearling.  BC Mile winner Uni cost 40,000 euros as a yearling.  The same day, of course, saw Newmarket's final Group race of the year, the Horris Hill Stakes (which was transferred from Newbury).  The winner Kenzai cost $6,000 as a yearling. 

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