Monday, 21 October 2019

Tuesday's Racing Tips (22nd October)

Just a quick post. 

Taking a look at Tuesday's two-year-old racing action. 

1:40 Yarmouth - 

Testing going. Not my favourite medium to find winners. A 0-75 nursery over 6f 3y. From a significant entry point of view, a couple of these may be of interest. George Scott's Dragon Command has won a couple of races and a determined horse. A winner at Claiming class last time out. Difficult to assess whether this 7f on soft ground will be too much of a test of stamina. 

Karl Burke's two-year-olds have been in fine form. Seven Emirates has always been held in some regard by connections but been disappointing. Has taken time to appreciate what racing is all about and a little weak in ways. The first try at nursery class may show more today. 

Personally, I would take a watching brief. 

2:15 Yarmouth - 

Once again a Burke runner catches the eye. From a statistical point of view Made For All has decent claims. Ideally, this filly would be much better bet if drifting in the market. 

It is worth watching the betting as this may be revealing for few of these - helping pinpoint potential improvers or weak links. Lady Tati didn't show a great deal on debut but if fancied in the betting may well have each-way claims. If very weak in the market best watched. 

Lady Light cost a packet at the yearling sales fetching 850,000 euros and in the ownership of China Horse Club International Limited. Unless seriously fancied in the betting, I find Michael Bell's debutant are more likely to be placed than win. 

I would definitely let the betting settle before placing a bet. 

2:35 Newcastle - 

Another tough-looking race. From a significant entry and betting point of view, I would be looking at Grand Bizarre and Carlos Felix. I am pretty confident both will run well. The latter, trained by David Simcock, could well be a worthy each-way option to the favourite if prices allow.    

2:50 Yarmouth - 

Nine fillies take part over this mile. 

Another trappy-looking affair with a selection of leading trainers and high-profile owners. Once again, I would let the betting settle down before considering what may happen here. The market may help disregard a couple of lesser lights. 

The betting suggests it is out of six horses. 

Too Big To Fail looks the type to enjoy a test of stamina and has valuable experience after making her debut at Nottingham. Mark Johnston's filly ran on well that day in what looked a fairly competitive race. I can see her going well. However, there may be some opposition. 

John Gosden unveils a daughter of Frankel, a homebred in the ownership of A E Oppenheimer. Frankly Darling should be respected as her trainer does well at this course, especially if short in the betting. Has fair each-way claims if prices allow. 

Combine has been given a Class 2 stakes entry for Hugo Palmer. The betting should tell the story for this horse's chance. 

Similarly, David Simcock has Float racing in the familiar silks of Qatar Racing Limited. 

Cabaletta is well owned and trained. 

This looks a difficult race to assess at the time of writing and even when the betting settles it may well be worth taking a watching brief. 

Best bets on the day:

2:15 Yarmouth - Made For All 
2:35 Newcastle - Carlos Felix (only if drifting to each-way odds)

Posted: Jason Coote 

Thursday, 17 October 2019

Oisin Murphy Q & A: The Champion Jockey Talks Racing

I don’t think my next jockey needs any introduction. I will just let the champ take it away.

Oisin, have you always been involved in horse racing? 

I lived with my Uncle Jim at age 15 - 16. I rode ponies from the age of 4 and racing was always on TV at home. 

How much influence did John Reid have on your racing career? 

John Reid used to spend hours tutoring me on the equicizer. He was a huge help. I’m still in contact with him now. 

If you weren't a jockey what would you have done? 

My dream for many years was to become an international showjumper. I was small though and my uncle Jim suggested I should ride out for him. I contracted the racing bug! The rest is history!

If you could ride any horse in history who would it be? 

Frankel was an exceptional animal. The best flat horse I’ve seen. Best Mate was a star, winning 3 Cheltenham Gold Cups. 

What do you like to do in your spare time? 

I follow showjumping and my girlfriend and many of my mates compete at the top level. It’s a great sport. 

Former jockey Alan Rutter told me the brilliant Roaring Lion was the best horse he had ever ridden on the gallops and he was classy and had a certain swagger. 

It's such a shame he's not with us anymore but would he be the best horse you have ridden in your career? 

Unfortunately, Roaring Lion lost is battle with colic. I was very fortunate he came along so early in my career. He had amazing power and balance. His turn of pace was electric. His temperament to match one’s best friend. 

I personally love 2-year-old horses, what are your views on the exciting prospects Military March and Heart Reef? 

Military March has lots of size and scope. He will make a lovely horse next year. Heart Reef is less of a physical specimen, she’s also female with a great pedigree. Her trainer excels with this type of horse. 

Do you have any dark horses that my readers should look out for next season? 

I think Chill Chill will continue to progress. She’s a half-sister to Beat The Bank. He was brilliant. This filly is becoming more like him. 

I can't finish without congratulating you on your amazing achievement on becoming a Champion jockey and look forward to hopefully seeing you win many more over the years.

What advice would you give to anybody wanting to get into the racing game? 

If you are willing to work hard enough, you will achieve it. Never lose sight of the fact, the horse is no.1 Everything else comes after that. The best figures in racing, live, breathe and dream it. 

A huge thanks to Champion Jockey for taking time out of his busy schedule and answering questions for my blog. I would also like to congratulate him again and look forward to seeing him crowned Champion jockey at Ascot on Saturday, also thanks to Uncle Jim for giving Oisin some great advice about becoming a jockey. 

One last thanks to Simon @paddockinspecto for his photograph and input.

Apprentice Jockey Poppy Bridgwater Talks Racing And Goats

Poppy Bridgwater is a young apprentice jockey going places. The 21-year-old is apprentice jockey to David Simcock and rides regularly for Tony Carroll. Poppy has struck up a good relationship with Toni’s Star winning three times on her. The daughter of David Bridgwater looks to have a great future ahead and answer a few questions about her career to date.

Poppy, have you always been involved in horse racing? 

My dad is a trainer, so I was always involved with racing from a young age... I have ridden since I was a child and was very into my showjumping as a teenager. I got the bug for racing when I went to the Cheltenham festival to watch the Giant Bolster run in the Gold Cup... but it wasn’t until my mum rode in a charity race at Cheltenham that I would thought, id quite like to do that! 

At what age did you become a jockey? 

I was 16 when I rode as an amateur, my dad trains mainly jumps horses, but he was very good at finding me horses to have a spin round on. I was 18 when I got my apprentice licence, after having my first ride as an amateur on Engai, that was it, I was fully focused and all I wanted to do was race ride. 

You have ridden some nice winners over the years do you have a favourite? 

I have enjoyed every single winner I’ve had in a different way, they’re all special to me. My first winner is one I’ll never forget, it was a fantastic day for me and my dad. Winning the Brighton Bullet on Pour La Victoire was a very special day too, I’ve won 4 on that horse and we had a very good partnership. But I’d have to say riding a winner at Ascot on She Believes for Sylvester Kirk was the most important to me. It came at just the right time and nothing can beat Ascot! 

If you weren't riding horses what would you have done? 

I think if I wasn’t riding in races I’d go into showjumping. If not I’d love to have worked with animals.

If you could ride any horse in history who would it be? 

A horse called Dargo my dad trained. Won with Jason weaver by a distance... wouldn’t mind a winner that easy! Or I’d absolutely love to have sat on Cue Card, or Hurricane Fly, two of my favourite jumps horses. 

What is your goal for the future? 

Just keep chipping away, hopefully, ride a few winners on the AW! Been a bit quiet this year, so hopefully, pick things back up. 

What do you like doing in your spare time?

I love running or anything sporty, but in my spare time, I like spending time at home with the goats and dogs.. if I’m not there I’ll be shopping with friends. 

What does the day in the life of a jockey involve? 

A typical day for me is wake up at 5.30, ride out as many lots as I can, if I’m racing head off to the races sometimes you can be driving up to 6 hours a day, have a run around the track and ride. If I’m not racing, do evening stables and go to the gym. 

Do you get time off to go out and hit the town or do you have to be strict all the time? 

If I’m not working at the weekend I can go out. I tend to go home and see my family on the weekends so wouldn’t go for nights out very often. 

Any horses for my readers to look out for over the coming months? 

I quite like a filly I ride called Lady Tati. She goes nicely at home, just see if she takes it to the track. I also like a horse I rode first time out called Morlaix, over a trip I think he’ll be a nice horse. 

Last but not least tell me about your goats. 

I have 4 goats... my favourite and probably the most well-known one is called Libby. She’s a pygmy goat, we got her from a petting zoo, she was the first goat I ever had and I definitely fell in love with them. I’d almost go as far as saying I’d choose a goat over a dog as a companion! Absolutely love them. They are so full of character and energy! 

A big thank you to Poppy for taking the time to answer questions for my blog and good luck for the future.

Visit David Bridgwater website

Monday, 14 October 2019

Eye-Catchers Monday 7th-Sunday 13th October(Part One)

17:10 Kempton 09 Oct 2019

I have been trying to stick to a rule of only betting on horses second time out but I will make an exception for my next eye-catcher. Zambezi Magic has already run twice and with starting prices of 50/1 and 16/1. I might regret putting this Clive Cox trained Zoffany colt up here. I think he had a few issues which is why he has worn a hood both starts to date and his last race wasn't the strongest but saying that the winner Higher Kingdom does have an early entry for the 2000 guineas next year. Zambezi Magic was tapped for toe in the early stages of this race before making rapid headway a furlong out before Adam Kirby got boxed in and ran on again when finally get a clear passage. I think he could pick up a small race in the future and a mile would be a positive move. 

17:40 Kempton 09 Oct 2019

Bye Bye Lady (3yo) made a pleasing enough debut for Andrew Balding at Kempton last Wednesday. The Sea The Stars filly cost 725,000 gns as a yearling and is owned by The King Power Racing Team. I don’t normally put 3-year-olds in my eye-catchers but hopefully, Bye Bye Lady can make it worthwhile next timeout. The 9/4 favourite looked professionally enough and never showed any sign of greenness in her debut race. Silvestre De Sousa kept her in midfield for most of the way until creeping up on the inside only to be checked when making his move. The winner Maximum Effect had flown by now and it was a case of staying on steadily to finish fifth. It should be more streetwise next time and hopefully, get a bit more luck in running. 

14:25 Nottingham 09 Oct 2019 

Not sure how strong this race was but the Charlie Fellowes winner King Carney looks a nice type. The third and favourite that day was the Ralph Beckett filly Annie De Vega who ran a race full of promise and could be winning soon herself, I imagine the Lope De Vega filly will be a short price next timeout but the one that caught my eye was the Mark Johnston trained Too Big To Fail. The Teofilo filly wasn’t fancied here on debut but ran a promising race despite being inexperienced in what was her first day at school. Too Big To Fail is a half-sister to another Mark Johnston runner called Vivid Diamond who won second time out and has an official rating of a 106 after some fine efforts in group company. Too Big to fail looks a typical Mark Johnston out-and-out stayer after starting slow at Nottingham but plugging on well to the line and am sure will appreciate stepping up in distance in the future. Hopefully, Mark Johnston can get another run into her before the season ends. 

Thanks for reading and good luck

Saturday, 12 October 2019

Saturday Reviews And Previews (12th October)

Now that I am back in work time to write posts has been put on the back burner, especially this week being on the early shift but I have tried to post a couple of fancies on social media and wish I hadn't to be honest. 

First bet I had was the Charlie Hills newcomer Raajin who made his debut on Wednesday. Charlie Hills had given Raajin a Champagne Stakes entry and a Royal Lodge Stakes entry, but he didn’t take part. The late market support brought some hope that the 12/1 I took was the right move but Raajin shot out the stalls and pulled his chances away and eventually finished fourth. I won't be giving up just yet but needs to settle better next timeout. 

Next bet was Roman Melody who was also attracted late support and yes also finished fourth in what was a disappointing display and looked to have regressed. 

My only bet that won was at York on Friday and I didn’t get time to even post my fancy. Air Power took a decent looking field apart and looks a nice Tim Easterby colt for the future.

19:30 Wolverhampton 12 Oct 2019 British Stallion Studs EBF Novice Stakes 

Eye-Catches: Pot Of Paint, Glenties 

We have it all in this hot looking Novice Stakes race. First off is the experienced Wild Thunder who sets a decent standard here but could be vulnerable to a couple of potentially nice horses. Wild Thunder started his career with a win back in May and has been quite busy since with a couple of seconds along the way. 

Glenties went into my notebook when finishing second to the well-touted Tsar at Newcastle last week. That was an impressive debut from the Mark Johnston colt who went off at an unbelievable 28/1. How good is Tsar? I still don't know, but he is very well-thought-of by John Gosden. Glenties cost 52,000 guineas at the yearling sales, should come on plenty for that run and should be in with a chance at the business end of the race. 

Pot Of Paint went onto my eye-catcher list after making his debut in the Class 2 Convivial Maiden Stakes race at York in August. The Tom Dascombe New Approach colt went off at 66/1 shot for his first experience on a racetrack. Pot Of Paint a 65,000 guineas yearling purchase was kept at the back by Richard Kingscote before he weaved his way through beaten horses to finish strongly into fourth place. That was an excellent run considering he was at the back until a few furlongs out and the form of the winner looks rock solid. To add to that we have some nice looking newcomers that need checking out in the market. I may do a split stake on Pot Of Paint and Glenties here. 

16:25 York 12 Oct 2019 Join The Coral Bet & Get Club Novice Stakes  

Eye-Catcher: Al Rufaa

Colour Image will start hot favourite here and rightly so after a promising debut at Newmarket last month and could easily win here but to short for me. Fox Duty Image needs to bounce back after a disappointing effort last time out. I'm tempted to do a split stake on Al Rufaa and El Naseri here and chance my luck that the favourite will disappoint. Al Rufaa was friendless in the market before his debut at Leicester last week when drifting from 6/1 to 12/1 at the off. If a Gosden horse takes a drift like that you know your money has all but gone. It proved the case as Al Rufaa started slow and ran green until staying on the final furlong. Another market check with this Kingman colt. El Naseri has put two solid efforts in and could be worth another chance. The Richard Hannon colt Gold Desert also made a promising debut and need a market check. 

Good luck and thanks for reading.

Tuesday, 8 October 2019

2YO Horse Racing: Wednesday Previews

Well, the flat season is winding down and the trackers are very few and far between. It’s been a busy old year with starting a new blog but I wouldn't change it for the world. Being off work for the past six weeks gave me time to do some great questions and answers posts with lots of great trainers and hopefully, I can get a few more in the coming weeks and months. 

Onto today's racing, as I said the flat is winding down, so I haven't really had too many horses to write a post about. I mentioned a few fancies on social media last week and two out of three won which was a pleasant surprise. First was the Godolphin filly Tadreej who was 9/2 in the morning and ended up winning at 5/2. I say she won but only just from the fast-finishing Roger Varian newcomer Rideson who looks one to follow. 

I didn't bet on the John Gosden trained Sheriffmuir who could only manage second after blowing his chances at the start by pulling double and not settling for the first few furlongs. 

Next up was the Richard Hughes trained Tafish who had run a couple of nice races already, and I was hoping it would be third time lucky. I also had the Karl Burke trained Seven Emirates as a tracker running in the same race. I watched the betting and seen some early money for Tafish so I took the gamble to take an early price of 12/1. In the end, the War Command colt won easy and ended up 4/1 at the off. 

18:25 Newcastle 09 Oct 2019: Lancastrian Suite Fillies' Novice Stakes 

Tracker. Tulip Fields

Tracker and Eye-Catcher. Red Line Alexander

Interesting race here with a lot of the top yards out in force. The betting will be the key with the newcomer's chances, so I will mention a few of the horses that have already raced this season. Eventful improved last time out when second to the well-thought-of Mark Johnston filly Freyja at Beverley. Will need to step up again in what looks like a nice Novice Stakes race. Tulip Fields is the most experienced filly in the field and has run three solid efforts to date so far. The Mark Johnston filly should be in the mix again hereafter chasing home the nice Ralph Beckett filly Heart Reef last time out at Haydock Park. One which I imagine will be a short price is the Simon Crisford filly Red Line Alexander who was backed into 11/2 from 7s on her debut at Ascot last month. The Sea The Stars filly was slowly away that day and pulled hard the first few furlongs. The more experienced pair Expensive Dirham and Pocket square got first to run and Red Line Alexander could never strike a blow despite staying on at the finish. Pocket Square looks a nice type for Roger Charlton and the form had been franked when the John Gosden filly Anastarsia won a nice race at Newcastle last week. 

Conclusion: If Red Line Alexander touches an each-way price it would be a bet for me but I think there is more chance of seeing a pig fly (Currently 7/4). 

16:35 Kempton 09 Oct 2019:Close Brothers/British Stallion Studs EBF Novice Stakes: 

Tracker. Raajin 

Raajin is a nicely bred Raven’s Pass colt trained by Charlie Hills. Interested to see if any market support for this well-thought-of colt on debut against a few nice types. Trying not to bet on debutantes but we will see. 

14:25 Nottingham 09 Oct 2019 British EBF Matchbook Future Stayers Oath Restricted Maiden Stakes 

Eye-Catcher. Master Spy

I might have a small each way if the market speaks in favour of the Paul Cole trained Master Spy here. Last seen 90 days ago in a six-furlong race at Newbury when 20/1 on debut. This would be a speculative bet because Of plenty of negatives here. Master Spy got worked up in the stalls that day and hasn't been seen since. This is a big step up in trip here plus heavy going to contend with. As I say I will let the betting settle first and see if any support for this Mastercraftsman colt. 

Thanks for reading and good luck.

Sunday, 6 October 2019

Charlie Fellowes Talks Racing, Golf And Cooking

Based at Bedford House Stables Newmarket, Charlie Fellowes has come a long way in a short space of time. I imagine if you had been a horse trainer all your life and managed to have runners at the Breeders Cup (Wet Sail), Woodbine (Kasseopia) and Prince Of Arran in Dubai you would retire a happy man, not to forget Endless Acres finishing second at Royal Ascot. The list goes on but for a man who only started training in 2014, this is nothing short of incredible. 

Charlie, have you always been involved in horse racing?

No, I haven’t. I grew up on a farm near Huntingdon and only really came into contact with horseracing when my mum became a member of a syndicate when I was about 7. I used to watch channel 4 racing religiously and went to Newmarket with my mum. I quickly fell in love with it and decided that it was something I wanted to do forever. Amazingly I stuck to it and here I am today! 

You have trained plenty of classy horses over the years including Thanks Be, Hajaam and Prince Of Arran. How do you manage to keep on top of your game? 

Attention to detail and sticking to your principles. I have always said that I believe the mental aspect of training horses is just as important has getting them fit. I will never change my mind on that and it will always mould how I approach training horses. You also have to have a good team around you who think the same way you do. 

If you weren't a trainer what would you have done? 

I love sports so probably something to do with sport. Maybe golf? I love playing golf and my uncle works for the European tour so I might have followed him that way. 

If you could train any horse in history who would it be? 

Frankel. The best I have ever seen and probably will ever see. 

What do you like to do in your spare time if you get any? 

I love playing golf. I really enjoy cooking too. And I guess seeing friends from home. I didn’t grow up in racing so a lot of my closest friends don’t live near me and work in London. I love going to see them. 

I imagine Wet Sail running in the Breeders Cup Juvenile race in 2014 is your career highlight so far, What was that like? 

Mmm. It was a special trip but I definitely wouldn’t say it was my career highlight. I probably didn’t realise how lucky I was to have a runner in the Breeders' Cup aged 27 but a winner at Royal Ascot, a winner on Derby day in Australia and a 3rd in the Melbourne cup all come above that experience. 

How is Chiefofchiefs and will he run at the Champions Meetings on the 19th? 

He is great. The plan is to run next week either at Kempton or York. If he were to win there he could head to Ascot where the soft ground would definitely play to his strengths. 

Do you have any dark horses who will run towards the end of the season or any to look forward to next season? 

I have a couple of 2yr olds who haven’t run yet that I like a lot. Riviera Belle has been working nicely at home and could make her debut in the next couple of weeks. A couple for next year are Byron Hill and Immortal Beloved. 

A big thank you to Charlie Fellowes for making time to answer questions for my blog and good luck for the rest of the season.

Visit Charlie Fellowes website here

Saturday, 5 October 2019

Katie Scott Talks Racing, Cocktails And A Pony Called Barney

Based at Stables Cottage Galashiels, in the heart of the Scottish Borders, Katie Scott has come along way from riding ponies in her younger years to becoming a full-time trainer. Douglas Julian and Rockley Point have kept this smaller yard ticking over nicely.


Katie, have you always been involved in horse racing? 

When I was younger, my parents kept a point to pointer and also had shares in horses with Alistair Whillans. When I was old enough I started helping out at Alistair’s at the weekends and after school. The first horse I ever led up at the races was called Nautical Star, he won that day and after that, I was hooked. Keith Dalgleish was actually in the saddle. 

At what age did you decide to become a trainer and why? 

Becoming a trainer was a bit of a progression rather than a decision. I worked at Alistair’s and then Rayson Nixon’s whilst always having a point-to-pointer or two at home. Then when the point-to-pointers became more successful and busier until that was a full-time job. From there it made sense to move into training under rules where there is more scope to improve and build a successful business. It really is a dream come true to be doing it. 

You rode a lot of ponies when you were younger, did you have a favourite? 

I was lucky to ride lots of different ponies when I was growing up and I got to enjoy lots of pony club activities, hunting and show jumping. The naughty and more difficult ponies are the ones that teach you riding skills and patience with animals. When I was 11 we bought ‘Barney’ a 3 yo Connemara pony from Ireland, and he turned out to be extra special. I had him until I was 16, and we achieved a huge amount together, he is still out competing to this day now aged 23. To this day I love working with and bringing on young horses and I think he started that. You trained some nice horses over the years including Douglas Julian. 

Who has been your favourite horse around the yard? 

It’s hard to pick a favourite in the yard as they are all such characters. I feed all the horses every day and like to have a seat on them all, which is possible since we are such a small yard. Douglas Julian was amazing kick-starting my career and will never be replaced, he was such a special horse. Rockley Point as our first ever flat horse and winner has to be another flag bearer for the yard. He was a cheap buy and has picked up 3 wins and 8 places for us. 

If you could train any horse in history who would it be?

It’s hard to pinpoint one horse for this question but for a flat horse, I was a massive Zarkava fan. She has a huge heart, was very flamboyant and had a great bond with Christophe Soumillon, I loved watching her race. For a National Hunt horse, I think Moscow Flyer would have been an amazing horse to be associated with especially when he ran in such a great era of 2-mile chasers. At his best, he was just electric. 

If you weren't a trainer what would you have done? 

I passed all my highers and the plan was to have a year out to work with horses and then go back to study Physiotherapy. That was 14 years ago. 

What do you like to do in your spare time if you get any haha? 

I don’t get a lot of spare time but I enjoy going to the gym. I also have a great bunch of friends, we often get together for food and cocktails! What has been the highlight of your career so far? It’s hard to pick one highlight but when Rory’s Valentine won at Perth at 50/1 it was my mum Sylvia’s first winner as an owner which made it pretty special. 

With the new season approaching can you give my readers a dark horse to look out for? 

I think when we are such a small yard it is hard to put forward a ‘dark horse’. We have a mare called Western Supernova that was incredibly backward at the start of her career, and she slowly progressed last season. She maybe isn’t a dark horse as such, but she has strengthened up and improved no end and I think she could be nice to watch out for when she heads handicapping. A huge thank you to Katie Scott for taking time to share her memories with me.

Visit Katie Scott's Website Here

Thursday, 3 October 2019

Ruth Jefferson Talks Racing, Horses To Follow And Peaky Blinders

Based at Newstead Cottage Stables, North Yorkshire. Ruth Jefferson is the new kid on the block. However, following in the footsteps of her late father, Malcolm, she is a trainer who is going places. She has a decent strike rate with a number of lovely horses including Double W’s, Mega Yeats & Waiting Patiently. 

One of her favourite hunting grounds is Hexham were she has a healthy points profit.


Ruth, have you always been involved in horse racing? 

Mum and Dad moved to Newstead in April of 1981. I was born in November. I grew up in the yard and always took a keen interest in horses. There are pictures of me in the feed room making up feed and of me brushing horses aged around 3 so it's fair to say I was involved from a young age. I started riding out when I was 12. 

At what age did you decide to become a trainer and why? 

I always wanted to train, the thought that goes into it interested me and I love the horses. At 16 I went to the British Racing School and whilst everyone else wanted to be a jockey, I wanted to be a trainer. I’m probably better at giving instructions than following them. 

I know you did a lot of riding out when you were younger, did you have a favourite horse?

I’ve had several down the years. The first horse I rode out was Magic Bloom – mother of According To Pete and the first winner I lead up at Bangor aged 14. Anabranch was another I rode – not sure I loved riding her but she enjoyed herself! 

You have trained plenty of classy horses over the years including Dato Star and the brilliant Waiting Patiently.  How have you managed to keep on top of your game for so long? 

To be fair we have had quieter periods in between but I hope to emulate Dad in that we always have a nicer type around the yard to keep our names in lights. The training methods don’t alter much you just need a nice horse and a bit of luck. 

If you weren't a trainer what would you have done? 

I actually trained as a Dietitian so maybe I should re-qualify and go back to that. 

What do you like to do in your spare time if you get any? 

I don’t get much so I read, but binge-watch TV shows like Game of Thrones and Peaky Blinders and take my dog for a walk! 

What has been the highlight of your career so far? 

Waiting Patiently’s Grade One success. Also, Dad was quite ill for a while before he passed away so it was nice to give him an ITV double in his name before he died with Waiting Patiently at Kempton and Black Ivory at Warwick. 

With the new season approaching can you give my readers a couple of dark horses? 

Not dark horses but I like both the mares we purchased at the May sales following runs in point to points. Blossoming Forth and Clondaw Caitlin

A big thank you to Ruth Jefferson for giving me an open and frank piece for my blog.

Visit Ruth Jefferson's website here

Wednesday, 2 October 2019

This Year's Top 5 Lots from the Pointing Fields

The following five point-to-point horses were sold under the hammer at various sales this year and will be expected to be seen this season either over hurdles or in bumpers. Not having the inside line, this is basically a search engine research and plans for some of these horses will become clearer once Mark Howard's One Jump Ahead hits the shelves. Still, until that book arrives, this will have to do. This is not an endorsement nor am I suggesting these will all win multiple Grade Ones in the years to come. This is simply a breakdown of the five most expensive horses from the pointing fields during the spring. 

The format for each horse goes: 

Name, age, colour, sex, race record, trainer, the owner (if known) 

Price, sale, date, vendor, purchaser Sire (notable progeny), Damsire (notable broodmare progeny) 

Notable relatives on dam line (3/1 = 3rd dam is 1st dam of = grand-dam is a sibling of) 


PAPA TANGO CHARLY 4chg (1 run 1 win) Jonjo O'Neill, Martin Tedham 

£440,000 Goffs UK Aintree HIT Sale 04/04/19 Milestone Stables, A Kennedy 

No Risk At All (Allaho, Gumball, Ajas) Mansonnien (Whisper, Terrefort, So French) 

3/1 Encore Un Peu (2nd Grand National, Aintree 1996) 3/0 Creme Caramel (1st Prix Finot 1983) Papa Tango Charly is the most expensive horse on this list after changing hands at the same Aintree sale which saw Don Poli knocked down for a hugely inflated £170,000. Incidentally, the sale record was previously held by Samcro who went for £335,000 in 2016. This chestnut ran out a four-length winner of a Liscarroll 4yo Maiden named for the pertinent sale in March for Colin Bowe (handler of last season's leading bumper horse Envoi Allen). Naturally, with races of this nature, the form is difficult to weigh up - particularly as no horse in the first three has previous or subsequent efforts to measure. Nevertheless, the winner was a comfortable one and the next two behind also commanded healthy figures at the same sale. Runner up Big Bresil has joined the Tom George yard and is set to run in the same Roger Brookhouse colours by the useful Cheltenian - a half-sister to the dam of Big Bresil - after selling for £170,000. A further five lengths back in third, £105,000 purchase Meyer Lansky is out of a half-sister to another Grand National runner up, Oscar Time, and will also join Jonjo O'Neill.

WIDE RECEIVER 4bg (1 run 1 win) Gordon Elliott 

£410,000 Tattersalls Ireland Cheltenham February Sale 21/02/19 Leamore Horses, Elliott/Malone

Sholokhov (Don Cossack, Kruzhlinin, Esmondo) Sagamix (The Saint James, Jean Luc) 2/1 Alarm Call (1st Prix des Drags, Auteuil 2010, 1st Grand Steeple-Chase D'Enghien, 2009 2010) 

Next on the list is a tall bay son of Sholokhov who won Tattersall's Cragmore 4yo Maiden in February. Ran over the shorter two and a half mile trip, Wide Receiver ran out an emphatic winner putting eight lengths between himself and Colin Bowe's better fancied Premiumaccess. The runner up has not been seen since while the other three competitors were each pulled up on their next outings.

MY WHIRLWIND 4bf (1 run 1 win) Nicky Henderson, J P McManus £400,000 Tattersalls Ireland Cheltenham Festival Sale14/03/19 Kingsfield Stud, Nicky Henderson 

Stowaway (Champagne Fever, Hidden Cyclone, Outlander) Presenting (Might Bite, Paisley Park)

2/1 Sizing Coal (3rd Irish Grand National) 3/1 Mister Morose (1st Aintree Hurdle) 3/2 Alberta's Run 

Costing just €7,000 as a foal, this Stowaway bay became the most expensive National Hunt mare in training ever sold at auction when fetching £400,000 at the Cheltenham Festival sale and it is hoped that she might return to that hallowed turf next March. Her purchase is a reflection of the burgeoning mares' programme, it was in a Ballycahane 4yo Mares Maiden where she made all to make a winning debut in torrential conditions. She had the race comfortably won when Another Judy unseated at the last who gave the form some credence (as much as Irish p2p form can have credence) when falling with every chance in her next start. The runner up, Madam Deluxe (a half-sister to Draco), fetched £90,000 at the same Cheltenham auction while third-placed Beth Horan is a Gigginstown half-sister to The Romford Pele. Stowaway x Presenting crosses have a 40% winners to runners rate with winners including Poormans Hill, Champagne Mist and Jack Slade.

LETS GO CHAMP 4bg (1 run 1 win) Tom George, Roger Brookhouse 

£375,000 Goffs UK Spring HIT Sale 23/05/19 Monbeg Stables, Roger Brookhouse Jeremy (Our Conor, Jerrysback, Reserve Tank) Bahri (Ramdam)

2/1 Our Conor (1st Triumph Hurdle Cheltenham 2014, 2nd Irish Champion Hurdle Leopardstown 2014) 

Jeremy never ran beyond a mile on the flat and would not have been an obvious candidate for a National Hunt stallion. Not cutting much ice at the Irish National Stud with flat horses, his fee plummeted to a quarter of his original asking price when transferred to Garryrichard Stud before Our Conor advertised Jeremy's credentials as a jumps sire. These credentials were further bolstered by the likes of Jerrysback, Unison and Reserve Tank. However, no sooner had he developed a reputation, Jeremy was put down after breaking bones in his carpal joint. This wonderfully named bay represents Jeremy's last crop and his winning debut came in a Bartlemy 4yo Maiden in May. His race was twelve seconds faster than the first division of this Goff's point, itself won by Mustang Alpha - a £135,000 Jamie Snowden purchase out of a half-sister to Noland. Sent off a favourite at Bartlemy, Lets Go Champ lost a bit of his fluency towards the end of the race but always had more than enough in the engine to fend off the challenge of Colin Bowe's Full Back with the pair ten lengths clear of the remainder. Handled by Donnchadh Doyle, the Jeremy gelding will seek to emulate fellow Monbeg graduates in Holywell, The Last Samurai, and Monbeg Dude.

BRAVEMANSGAME 4bg (1 run 1 win) Paul Nicholls, John Dance and Bryan Drew

£370,000 Tattersalls Ireland Cheltenham Festival Sale 14/03/19 Monbeg Stables, Nicholls/Malone 

Brave Mansonnien (Riquet Enfin, Weapons Out) Nickname (Rikoboy, own includes Frodon/Cyrname) 

2/1 Gray Steel (3rd Prix La Barka 2007) 2/2 Raffles Sun (3rd Prix Renaud du Vivier 2018)

Another graduate of the Monbeg operation, this bay four-year-old was introduced in a Lingstown 4yo Maiden (HEADPHONE USERS BEWARE)! Despite greenness and a bad mistake at the seventh, he was able to compose himself enough to run out an eight-length winner from Colin Bowe's For Talks Sake. The form of the race is not standing up well although that generally isn't a major concern in this field and Paul Nicholls spoke well of him in a recent stable tour.

The following are the next ten most expensive (the funny prices are direct euro to pound conversions using the rate on the day).

The Big Breakaway
C Tizzard
2/2 Rathvinden
Femy Hollow
W P Mullins
3/1 Morley Street
T Lacey
3/1 Halcon Genelardais
Farouk d'Alene
G Elliott
3/2 Triolo d'Alene
Hold That Taught 
Kayf Tara
V Williams
.5 Banjaxed Girl
W P Mullins
2/2 Minella Foru
Deploy The Getaway
W P Mullins
3/3 Special Tara
Fado Des Brosses
E Williams
4/2 Cabernet
Grandads Cottage
O Murphy
1/1 Super Day

Noreen Bawn
A Fleming
3/1 Dashing

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