A lovely mild, spring-like morning, quiet on the yard with just a couple of the horses being ridden, the rest either out in the paddocks or on the walker for 40 minutes.  And a treat tonight for jump racing fans – “Being AP” is on BBC Two at 10pm tonight if you haven’t already seen it, it is excellent.   One runner at Carlisle tomorrow, Calivigny in the 3pm, 8 run and Brian Hughes rides.

Calivigny at Carlisle earlier this season

I was delighted with his first two starts over fences but his next two were disappointing and hence he feels he has lost his way a little, we are fairly confident that the holding ground was against him so with the conditions tomorrow described as good to soft we are hoping for a much improved effort. I also think that over fences he is better going right handed so it’s back to Carlisle where he began his chasing career over course and distance in October, his race that day has worked out well and as I regard 2m 4f as his minimum trip we have taken the hood off.

First lot heading back down the gallop last week

Calivigny is one of a few horses of ours that won on very soft ground last season and I have therefore presumed they like those conditions; however once they are forced to race at a higher level they are being found out by it, whilst they can get away with imperfect conditions in novice company they may not necessarily handle those conditions in hard run handicaps, one also needs to appreciate the difference between autumn/early winter rain softened ground and holding, deep, post-frost ground that we have a lot of at this time of year.