Martin’s Blog 17th January

We’re back! Apologies for no blog since last week. Belinda, myself, Freddie & Harry took the opportunity of a quiet weekend here to go and stay with Paul Davis in Switzerland. Paul runs our Martin Keighley Racing Club and lots of our partnerships and works in Switzerland and very kindly lets us go and stay with him. Not only does he ‘let us stay’ but he lets us know when the best value flights are, collects us from the airport, arranges ski hire, is a fantastic host, (doesn’t like cooking so I am able to give a little bit back by cooking supper on the nights we don’t go out!), makes us breakfast, finds the best ski resort for the day, drives us there etc etc – you get the picture! He even arranged brilliant sunshine all weekend too so the ski-ing conditions were absolutely perfect.

A long weekend suits me well too – the kids only have to miss a couple of days of school and I can watch the horses on Friday before we go and am back for them to do fast work on Tuesday. As if that was the end to Paul’s talents, he even manages to do his normal weekly email updates to the partnerships and club whilst I’m there to let him know what is going on with each of the horses and he is such a good persuader/negotiator that when he gets me to the top of a red run that I really don’t fancy ski-ing down – he manages to do so – and Belinda happily leaves him to it!!

It’s such a good weekend to clear the mind and the three resorts he took us to this weekend were absolutely stunning and the ski-ing was the best I’ve had I think. The boys are getting faster though – fearless and we luckily escaped what could have been an awful end to day one when Belinda was wiped out at speed and thought she’d broken her thigh. She soldiered on but our vet persuaded her to go to A&E (I’d been trying!) and luckily x-rays of her hip and pelvis showed no fractures today so she’s just a bit battered and lives to fight another day!

Lots of owners were in yesterday which is always great to see. Mick Coulson came to watch Lady Vitesse school over hurdles – she runs tomorrow. Jon Hughes, Ollie Ryan and Ross Hemming were also in for a meeting and to see their horses on the gallops. I’m such a great believer in a team ethic and our team extends well beyond our immediate team that look after and ride the horses – I am thrilled that the owners and our yard sponsor too are so generous with their time and advice that we are able to pick their brains and utilise their shrewd business acumen. This undoubtedly helps push us forward as we need to continually be thinking how we can improve how we do things here so that it helps us attract more owners and keep improving the quality of horses we have too.

A new addition arrived yesterday – a Passing Glance filly out of Born to Dream owned & bred by James Richardson and his family and to join our Racing Club to replace Viking Mistress. She has been educated with Claire Hart and her team for about a month and is an exciting addition to the club. There are a few spaces still available and if you join now you also get a chance to help name the filly which is so exciting. Do get in touch and join us on 3rd February for a Racing Club Morning on the Gallops and meet the other fantastic members of the Club.