on a golden autumn day…… but with a vicious autumn storm moving steadily up the country Kinneston is a busy place this Sunday as the race is on to gather the oats and potatoes. Nature is playing some funny tricks on us this year and the severity of this storm will determine which horses we do or don’t run at Perth this week, forecasts being scrutinized but a confusing picture, I’m not the only one, the swallows and housemartins would normally be on their way South by now but some remain, appearing uncertain- I suspect they know more than us.
So the heart beats a little faster with the Perth autumn festival signalling the start of the new National Hunt season as far as I am concerned, what of the horses, are they ready? As ever not sure really, it’s tricky, always trying to give the horses enough work but not too much, prefer to find they will come on for the run than discover we have left the season behind on the gallops, little danger of the latter here but on the other hand keen for them to run well. Some of the horses I look at and couldn’t be happier, others just aren’t how I would like them in their coats – a bit stary, maybe needing a clip soon. The poor weather meant some of their summer coats never really bloomed in the way one would like. The horses that should be fit are the summer jumpers but not sure about them either, it’s been so stop and start and I’ve been trying to give them little breaks in the hope we get some good ground in October, are they as sharp as they could be? Time will tell but I suspect they will need their races if they do run this week.
Another change is the way in which we have been training them, regular readers may have noticed the absence of trips to Lucinda’s woodchip. No, we haven’t been banned but I have felt that with an increased number of horses it is important that we are able to do everything here, there is no reason why not, I just enjoyed the trips there and it is a good gallop but I don’t think it should be part of our core training regime. It will be interesting to see if the change has made a difference, we still hope to go there from time to time, particularly with the younger horses to give them a day away beofre going to the races. See how they run this week, perhaps I will be asking neighbourly favours again on Friday morning……….