Horses aren’t machines and yesterday was one of those days at Fakenham and a long way to go too! Ben Buie could never quite dictate as he enjoys and probably found the ground a little softer than the quick ground he prefers. With the final fence omitted, Gavin was able to canter him up the straight to pass the line and collect £865. He probably needs a bit of help from the Handicapper now.
Shinji emptied disappointingly and no-one is as disappointed as us when a favourite gets beaten. Sadly, with the wide access to Trainers everyone has now, following a beaten favourite the abuse arrives shortly afterwards via a number of channels – do they not think realise that we are also desperately disappointed when horses don’t run as we hoped. We put our lives into training these horses and want the very best for them and also for their connections who put their trust in us too?
The BHA are supporting us better than ever with this and lets hope that they manage to track some of these people down as it is so unnecessary. I wonder how many other jobs have various threats to them and their families when something goes wrong?! A bizarre world out there. As with all our horses following a run, they’ll be fully checked over again this morning.
We are at two meetings today. At Lingfield Wide to West makes his chasing debut under James Best in the 2m 7 1/2f Weatherbys Stallion Book Novices’ Handicap Chase. He’s a big imposing horse who seems in good form with himself at home and the switch to chasing will hopefully bring out more improvement in him – he’s still a relative baby and learning all the time. Let’s hope he runs well for joint owner Leigh Powell who is celebrating his birthday today. Happy Birthday Leigh!
At Huntingdon a horse at the other end of his career – Mr Mafia – runs under Adam Wedge in the Veteran’s Chase over 2m 7 1/2f. What a complete star he has been for us joining us aged 9 from Tony Carroll’s yard who’d already produced a couple of wins from him and plenty of placed efforts too. Mafia struck up a fabulous relationship with Harry Stock who won 4 races on the bounce with him, Richard Johnson who went on to win 3 races following Harry’s retirement and then Sean Bowen has won 5 on him following Dickie’s retirement. He’s had a stop start season due to the weather and, with Sean having to go to Lingfield, Adam Wedge comes in for the ride. Adam has been due to ride him twice before but we’ve had to pull him out after the ground went against him.
With the wet winter we are having this could possibly be his final run. He’s given the Boggis family and our family and yard so much fun and, with him still enjoying training at home and with Freddie turning 16 on Leap Day, there is a possibility that Freddie & Mafia may join forces in the Spring. When Sean got off him after winning at Newton Abbot he said it would be criminal if Freddie didn’t ride him before Mafia retires – now that would be exciting! We’ll see.
It’s also Karen Salter’s birthday so huge Happy Birthday to you Karen – we’ve had a word with Back On The Lash!