A fair week, cool but conditions now actually quite dry with the ground firming up here and at Perth where they are watering for next week’s meeting. A progressive week with the horses all going well, fourteen more doing their first proper piece of work tomorrow so that will tell us much more about where we are, but it won’t be on the grass.
Nothing purchased at Doncaster Sales, bid on a couple and plenty of nice horses but in no rush to add to the equine team at this stage, good fun though and caught up with a lot of people. A little lament for Newcastle’s wonderful turf track which has just been raced on for the final time after 146 years prior to the diggers arriving on Monday to create the world’s first straight all-weather mile…. I think I’ve said enough on the subject but oh for a last minute reprieve.
So, another one of my occasional series on NH sires for the purists; Dr Massini is another sire that has three representatives at Kinneston. Unlike Gold Well he is not a sire that I have particularly sought out but instead has rather crept up on me and I have been increasingly taken by his progeny. He was a thoroughly dubious character on the racecourse, making his debut as a 3yo for Michael Stoute he won twice prior to finishing down the field in the Irish Derby, he then won at Kempton on his first run as a 4yo prior to completely chucking it in, switched to Aidan O’Brien for a 5yo campaign he was last seen refusing to leave the stalls at the Listowel in April 1998. Clearly he wasn’t going to make it as a flat stallion so as a son of Sadlers Wells he duly joined the Coolmore band of NH stallions standing (coincidentally like Gold Well a few years later) at the McCarthy’s Beeches Stud near Lismore. Keenly priced at a time when every Irishman had a few broodmares he soon covered some large books of mares but was quickly discarded when another “new kid on the block” came along and like several Coolmore NH stallions he landed up at Dunraven Stud in Wales. Their loss I say because he has turned into a very good NH sire producing no fewer than twenty 15o plus rated horses making him just about the best stallion standing in the UK. Like many good stallions he stamps his stock well and has produced lots of really honest staying types, they are fun to train in that they can be a little quirky – forward going, sometimes a touch aggressive and they love their work. Of the three we have More Madness is yet to run for the yard, aptly named perhaps but should be a fun staying handicap chaser this winter having shown plenty of decent form in Ireland. We also have Marlee Massie who was just touched off last week and God willing, will surely end up rated considerably higher than his present lowly mark. Finally we have the promising 4yo filly called Massini’s Lady – Now, here is a really good offer for anyone who wants to have some fun with minimal risk, there is one 15% share remaining in a partnership that is leasing her free of charge and the cost is an all-inclusive £185 per month, she ran well enough in her two bumpers, has improved out of all recognition during the summer and is a Dr Massini through and through – more details here – she should be ready to make her hurdling debut in about 3 weeks…..