Onwards and upwards ...

It is absolutely freezing today

Thursday, 10 January 2019

"The man who forgives is far stronger than the man who fights."

Nathan Croall.

First lot and it is still quite dark this morning

Although the wind has dropped overnight, it is still very cold this morning and it was absolutely brass monkey weather out on Southfields at second lot. A mug of tea in the hut while doing this report has started to warm me up, but I suspect we are in for very similar weather for the next couple of months. They are even forecasting another Beast from the East later in the month. We have been lucky that we have not had any snow so far as the rest of Europe have had enormous amounts of the white stuff, more than they have had for many a year. We have one non-runner today due to illness, which is disappointing, but the horses have all been out and had a good exercise cantering on the newly refurbished Rubbing House polytrack and Southfield Round polytrack. All has gone well and as long as they keep dry, which they have this morning, it is only the cold to contend with but plenty of good food and hay and warm rugs when they get back in their clean boxes soon puts them right.

Exercise over and making their way back to the yard

I see the investors in the Alizeti Group, who are looking to take control of the Tote, have been revealed and the China Horse Club, along with many other people, have made big investments. These people aren’t investing for the good of racing, they are investing to make money and why we couldn’t just run the Tote for the sport I don’t know. If all the profits went back into prize money it would revolutionise the sport, but as normal there will be very little that goes back in and most of it will reach other pockets. How very disappointing after what we thought the Jockey Club were going to do with their Britbet idea.

Second lot cantering

I see Bill Barber is commenting on Tony McCoy’s suggestions and says there is no chance of a supremo taking over, which is what I told you. There are so many different factions, especially when it comes to commercial matters, and the racecourses have got a firm grip and won’t be letting anything go to anybody. With all the things that are going on at present, it will be fascinating to see how it all evolves over the next few years.

Keeping the gallops up to a high standard

We are going to look at stallions from 11.30 onwards today visiting several studs in the nearby vicinity. Darley, Cheveley Park, Lanwades and the National Stud are all open today so there should be plenty of people having a look and trying to get the right stallions for their mares. It always pays to look every year at the stallions as a few of them do two seasons, i.e. they shuttle to other countries and can lose condition and interest. It is amazing how they do change from year to year and a wise old stock man always told me to have a look every year as a healthy stallion is what you want.