11th November news


The week ahead

1st February......and our presence on the racecourse this year has been sparse to say the least.

The horses are well in the main - there are always one or two with minor issues - but a mixture of fixture abandonments and hard frost in The Scottish Borders has had an impact.
Whilst the woodchip gallop in theory provides a surface that is least affected by weather extremities, it's not been possible to gallop our horses on work mornings due to the presence of underlying frozen patches. Steady canters certainly, but just not been able to add that extra bit of fitness required when any of our string hit the racetrack.

It'll come around, we know, and patience is a virtue...............

However, we have made a few entries the length and breadth of Britain on Saturday.
The track at Musselburgh is partly frozen, and the forecast for Thursday and Friday nights is sub-zero so you'd think that this would need to change significantly for racing to proceed. Shame, as this is the course's flagship Cheltenham Trials weekend. Clerk of the Course Bill Farnsworth has been keen to point out that the card is a mixture of 'Trials' races and 'normal' fare. Honda Fifty (OR102) is entered into the normal 0-115 handicap hurdle over 2 miles.

At the other end of the country (or at the southern end of a neighbouring country depending on your viewpoint) Sandown stage a classy card on Saturday. There already appear concerns over the hurdles course (heavy ground) and talk of an alternate all-chase card in the mix. Eternally Yours holds an entry in the Grade 3 handicap hurdle over 2m 7½f. A great deal of encouragement has been gleamed from how the form of our mare's last race at Aintree is working out. The 1st and 3rd were Grade 3 and Listed placed respectively next time while the 7th horse has won twice since including a Grade 2 hurdle.

Just in case Sandown is a no-goer, Eternally Yours is also entered in a Class 3 handicap hurdle at Wetherby on Saturday (~ 2m 4f), a race in which we have also entered Baby Ticker. Heavy ground is also there at the moment, so we'll see how things are later on this week.

And finally, also at Wetherby Saturday, we hope to run Dali Mail in the Class 2 0-150 handicap chase over 2m 3½f. He seemed to get the trip okay last time over 2m 4f, he's in very fine fettle at home.

January Gallop


What's happened to your youngsters then?

You may well ask.......

No, seriously though this group of horses which were unraced at the start of the season have been most impacted by the cold snap of the last 6 weeks. Not that it will have done any harm physically or mentally, it just has meant that one or two who would have made a racecourse appearance have had that debut moved a few weeks to the right.

Two or three have run so far.
Undecided ran a fair enough race back in December when 7th in a Newcastle bumper. Nothing has really come out of that race for another run, so it's a bit difficult to gauge the form level. We like this Sageburg gelding a lot, and he seemed to run a bit green that day but he may be one for a Spring bumper.
One of the string that did manage to hit the racecourse recently was Shoeshine Boy. As far as a debut run is concerned, this Valirun gelding will benefit for the run and did well to finish 6th in that Musselburgh race. Keen to see how he now progresses although he may not be sharp enough to win a bumper but an exciting hurdling career awaits next season.
Same can be said about Maid in Houxty - 6th in a Carlisle Mares' only bumper. She has been schooled with a view to making a debut run over timber in the next few weeks.
Talking of Maid in Houxty, her full sister Bonny Houxty arrived back at our gates last week (courtesy of Bill Aitchison) and she'll be looking to add to the promise shown in 3 hurdle runs last Spring in good time. Handicap hurdling over middle distances.

Enemy At The Gate has been most unlucky with several engagements missed due to postponements. He remains ready for a racecourse outing, so we'll keep trying over the next couple of weeks.

Elsewhere, 'Mac', 'Carter', 'Marcus' and the recently returning Jet Away gelding are coming along nicely, albeit a bit stop-start due to the weather. Maybe next month for bumper debuts.

'Emily', our mare by the recently sadly deceased NH Stallion Califet, has been spending a few weeks at a nearby livery yard while she strengthens a bit into her frame. Picked a good time too! She'll be back in the yard soon and will build on the immense promise shown in her previous spells in training.

During February we'd also hope to welcome back into the yard, two or three 4yr olds who have had a spell in training at Dodlands for another couple of months experience of stable life, morning exercise and so on.
A Multiplex gelding in the ownership of Simon and Angela Gillie is already here - doing some road work just now - with Al Duncan's Sulamani gelding, Eileen Smith's Passing Glance filly and Rob Bewley's Leading Light gelding to follow.

Lot 2


A fond farewell

A couple of our racemares have been retired in recent weeks.

Danced Every Dance, a lovely mare by Oscar showed a lot of promise in bumpers and in her early novice hurdles but was showing signs in her most recent races as having fallen out of love with racing. She's gone to a good home locally.

Also retired has been Paper Promise who will continue her equine life as a broodmare. She's well bred, and coupled with her robust frame, looks ideal for this new career. She also has a few well regarded black type performers close up in her pedigree and her half brother Way Out West was a triple winner under NH Rules.
Paper Promise herself, of course, is a dual bumper winner who went on to win a novice hurdle.

Paper Promise
Paper Promise (No. 5) coming to win at Newcastle

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