Martin’s Blog 11th September

A mixed day at Uttoxeter on Wednesday with our £250/1 shot Dreamsundermyfeet probably showing the most promise on the day putting the form of his bumpers behind him and gaining confidence since his wind operation that he can now breathe. A lovely educational ride from James Best saw him jump well and finish galloping giving us hope for the future with him.

Cotswold Prince wasn’t suited by the blinkers and not only made a mistake early on he did well to stand up from, he tripped badly turning for home and I again don’t know how he stood up. He is fine but it’s a run to put a line through we hope.

Raving Bonkers enjoyed himself a bit too much and ran a bit too keen for Lilly Pinchin down the back and gave himself not much chance of getting home. Frustrating but he’s in one piece and heads for the Sales next week at Doncaster. Do get in touch if you’d like to find out more.

Ernie Verberg was here yesterday from The Netherlands to bring some kit across and to meet those of the team she didn’t meet in July when she called over to see us and catch up. Since then we’ve been in more contact and we are thrilled that she has agreed to join us as a full time member of the team on 1st October. Ernie worked with Belinda and me at The Dukes’ and in fact only just missed leading me up on my first winner in March 1994 (ageing myself!) as she came to Condicote that summer and looked after Liz Prowting’s Air Shot, who provided me with my first two winners as a jockey, from then on.

So we go back a long way and knows how fitting it was that all those years later I managed to provide Liz Prowting with her first ever Grade One winner when Annacotty won at Kempton Park. Freddie often finds it boring that when we meet someone he’s not met before we tell him we met at ‘The Duke’s’ but it is so true, time and time again and we are so grateful for that amazing network of fantastic friends. Ernie has so many skills to bring to our team and we can’t wait for her to start.

James Best and Warren Marston in this morning and we worked a few on the carpet gallop. We also took Found On and Black Panther for a gallop around Ben Brain’s deep sand gallop. Found On is very free at home and hard to get work into her without lighting her up. She was very settled and James is quite superb on her. It did Black Panther good to get away too and I was very pleased with them both.