Grand National Day

We had some of our longest standing owners in today and it was a wonderful morning. David & Janne Bishop were here laiden with Janne’s delicious cakes, David & Mary Cull and also Matthew Baker and it was so good to see them all. Matthew took lots of photos of the team so they can’t wait to see those.

James Best, Warren Marston, Jelly Nolan and daughter Fern O’Brien and Jemima Turner were all in to help ride out and we even got Freddie back in the saddle too! We worked Dreamsundermyfeet, Dariya, Eclat Des Mottes, Brianna Rose, Kazontherazz, Enforcement, Debden Bank, Found On, Miss Antipova, Duke of Luckley, Capricia and Fiddledi Dee. Many of the others had worked yesterday and those not working just cantered.

Sarrasota Star is a non-runner at Chepstow today so no runners for us but plenty of entries next week and we may hopefully be well represented at Cheltenham.

We are all looking forward to the Grand National later today and we have had a yard sweepstake so all to play for! A brilliant race in prospect and you could make a case for so many of them.

Belinda is hoping that we may have a female winner this year and Martin Jones, who does most of the backing of our young horses, reminded her this morning that she rode a winner for him 16 years ago today at Andoversford Point to Point. Later in the afternoon on her only other ride she made it a double winning for me on Jo Stainer’s Palmers Peak – a day she will never forget and she shares her memories of the day here:

It really was a day I’ll never forget. Martin Jones had me as 5th choice jockey and slowly by surely the others decided to go to other meetings (Julian Pritchard, Adrian Wintle, Mark Wall & David Mansell) and he was therefore left with me for his precious Macy in the Members. My first ride for him. His instructions were easy – make all and win! Trained to perfection, Macy knew the drill and we won! I was over the moon.

Thrilled & excited I rang my mum who was in the Oncology Department at Cheltenham General Hospital and she shrieked and woke up the rest of the ward who were correctly observing the quiet hour!!

Our only worry now was that I had a 2nd ride and it was for us. New owner Jo Stainer’s Palmers Peak who great friend and Bloodstock Agent Gerry Hogan had sourced in Ireland and we’d won our maiden at Kingston Blount and we loved him. I couldn’t ride a double …could I? I so wanted him to win.

Oh yes! Palmers Peak (Gerry) was awesome. Despite a false start (frustrating as I went to post early to keep him settled) and Martin getting cautioned for being rude to the Starter (surely he could have let us go!) Palmers Peak was AMAZING & apart from shying at Martin on the home bend waving his arms & shouting “you’re being challenged” (I knew that and he wasn’t helping!) we WON! A double and a day we’ll never forget.

To top it all the Oncology Department let me go in after visiting hours to see Mum & they did an amazing job and kept her alive for another 5 years too.

Such sad news yesterday of the death of HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. An incredible man and so near to his 100th Birthday too. All of our thoughts are with his family.



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