Thursday 6th September 2018

An autumnal chill but brilliant sunshine so a stunning morning to be on the gallops. Just a quiet canter for most of the horses today and then lots to do around the yard ahead of our Annual Owners’ Day a week on Sunday. Do let Belinda know if you’ve not yet replied to your invitation yet as we need pretty accurate numbers for catering.

Two seconds yesterday and whilst usually I would find that to be totally frustrating, yesterday I was as delighted as you could be without winning. Mr Mafia isn’t a natural over a fence and was always flat out under Harry Stock, who gets on so well with him. He seemed to find it a real effort but Harry never gave up on him and despite looking well beaten turning for home, Mafia doesn’t know when he’s beaten and the pair of them gave it their all up the straight to eventually only go down by just a length staying on all the time. He has been such a star for us all and what fun we are having with him.

Next was City Never Sleeps who was re-appearing after over 500 days off the track for his patient partnership. He’s grown into his frame in that time and is a lovely big horse and we’ve always liked him and he’s been going well at home but we thought he’d strip fitter for the run. Given a good and positive ride from Andrew Tinkler, he was a bit keen early on but settled and jumped well and looked to have run his race and be tiring turning for home. However, he got a second wind and flew up the straight battling back after the last hurdle to finish 2nd beaten just 1 1/2 lengths! We were all thrilled with him and even more satisfying is that he has eaten up his supper and breakfast and trotted up sound. He’s now out in the field with the rest of the horses for the day and his partnership are understandably excited about his season ahead. Fantastic that their patience is being rewarded.