Cold and grey today, dry and not much rain in the forecast, at least not for this side of the country. A busy weekend beckons starting at Ayr tomorrow where their bold decision to ramp up the prize money to £100k has been rewarded with excellent competitive fields and plenty of Southern raiders. Won’t make winning any easier but it is the direction in which we need to travel and I’m delighted to be sending four runners from Kinneston; ground is verging on heavy and a little rain overnight would do no harm to make it wet rather than holding.
We have two runners in the 2nd race at 1.00pm and much as I would rather have kept them apart this is the ideal race for both of them to start their season so both of them will run, The Orange Rogue (Lucy) and Titian Boy (Grant); both big strong chasers who had good campaigns last season and start here on career high marks, I’m hoping there will be more to come from them but career bests first time out? Possibly, they should be just about fit enough whilst still expecting improvement for the run, 8 run.
Then in the 2.10 we run Another Mattie (Lucy), he’s in fine fettle, will love the ground, track and trip but is possibly a little high in the weights still to compete at this level but like to think he will run well, 11 run.
Last but not least Lake View Lad runs in the 2.45, he will also love the ground though may find the trip on the sharp side, he’s stepping up into open handicap company at a high level on what is only his 3rd start over fences but he’s street wise and, touch wood, a good jumper so hopefully he will handle it OK, again fit enough to do himself credit whilst he will still come on for it, 8 run and Stephen Mulqueen rides.
Then on Sunday Christmas in USA runs in the 2.00 at Carlisle, he has come down a long way in the weights, rightly so as he has shown precious little form since joining us from France, he’s been a real puzzle and who knows whether he will come right this time round – I certainly hope so as we built him a gallop so that we could train him “a la Macaire” and he’s been working really well at home, ’twas always thus though, 12 run and Lucy rides.
At Ayr earlier this week we had two good runs and two rather less good runs, the highlight was an excellent 2nd from my old favourite Buffalo Ballet and Craiganboy ran a very good race to finish 4th. On the other hand it wasn’t soft enough for The Bishop and McGinty’s Dream remains an enigma, fences for him next.