Mild today and another week of winter is behind us with nothing too extreme, good weather for training horses. An excellent day at Ayr on Monday with the highlight being a convincing win for The Orange Rogue under a positive front-running ride from Lucy, just reward for his patient owner who understands completely what this horse needs and is careful to ensure his trainer doesn’t over-race him, absolutely right as he would be an easy horse to mess up and it was great that everything came together for him again after taking little interest in proceedings on his previous start.
Earlier in the afternoon Massini’s Lady stayed on strongly to finish 3rd, probably a career best effort and she should progress from here, I suppose Marlee Massie’s run could be judged a little disappointing but the winner responded well to first time blinkers and our horse was only just beaten for second but I am beginning to revert to my original view that he wants better ground despite some facile wins on heavy at a lower level. An East Coast sort of few days coming up with raids planned on Musselburgh, Alnwick and Sedgefield over the weekend, starting with Musselburgh tomorrow for the first day of their Festival Trials meeting.
The Executive here need to be thoroughly commended for putting up £260k for the two day’s racing and they have been justly rewarded with a really competitive mix of racing involving good horses from the best yards in the country, whilst much of the money will no doubt go South it is precisely the sort of initiative racing in the North requires and it is good to see terrestrial TV coverage tomorrow from the excellent team at ITV4. We have two of our best horses running in the form of Jet Master in the inaugural running of the Edinburgh National at 2.05 and Top Cat Henry in the Scottish Foxhunters Chase at 3.45, both for excellent prize money. Jet Master is stepping into the unknown trip wise but he was staying on well at the end of a strongly run 2m 6f in his last chase and if he stays the 4m he could well play a part at good odds, Lucy rides and 13 run.
Top Cat Henry ran well on his stable debut a fortnight ago and will have come on for that but I’m not sure he will quite stay the extended 3m and the champion trainer appears to have slipped in a 154 rated horse to whom we are expected to give 6lb… hmm, I suppose we are racing for 2nd place then but you never know, Kit rides and 10 run. Lucy also rides Multipede in the 12.25, Rocklim in the 2.40 and Aristo du Plessis in the 3.15, interesting that France Galop have today announced a 4lb allowance for female jockeys, this would be transformational for the prospects for girls if introduced over here and a serious advantage for those of us lucky enough to have a female jockey who is as good as the boys so I think it’s an excellent idea!
Nothing for us at Musselburgh on Sunday sadly but looking forward to our 3 runners at Alnwick – Royal Chatelier (Jamie), Rossini’s Dancer (Crawford) and Wicklow Lad (Kit), no doubt Kit will have a few other rides and then it’s off to Sedgie on Monday, no rest for the wicked as they say.