Martin’s Blog 3rd April

A busy day at Stratford on Saturday and so nearly a winner. Lerichi Belle put in a much improved performance and, although still pulling pretty hard for quite some way, she jumped well and battled up the run in to finish 2nd beaten just a short head. Although frustrating not to win, we can now build on that run hopefully whilst still working at home on getting her even more switched off so she learns to conserve energy in her races.

Bobble Emerald ran with the choke out a little but still jumped well to finish 3rd and Viking Mistress turned for home looking the winner but just found the extra distance out of reach and faded to finish 6th. Still a good day out though was had by the enthusiastic members of the Martin Keighley Racing Club who came to support her.

Yesterday was a day for catching up at home with no runners and was pretty relaxed until poor Freddie took a fall from his pony and landed on his head. A bit of a nightmare for us where we are as our local hospital in Moreton shut at 8pm, Cheltenham no longer has a Paediatric Ward so Gloucester is the nearest 24 hour hospital and is far enough away. We opted for Moreton but as they’d only monitored him for a couple of hours they transferred him and Belinda to Gloucester by Ambulance for further assessment. Thankfully it turned out to be just a precaution and they arrived home before 1am – thanks to wonderful Chris Dee – and they had nothing but praise for the everyone that helped and treated them. A swollen eye this morning but he’s up and about and nothing a quiet day for him (that’ll be hard!) won’t sort out. He’s still determined to be a jockey when he’s older so his mum may have to get used to more trips to A&E!

Two runners today. Double Chocolate at Huntingdon returns after 286 days off the track but he goes well fresh (he won for us after nearly 500 days off) and, like Any Currency, doesn’t realise he’s 14 and seems very well despite being 9lbs higher than his last winning mark.

Brass Monkey makes his debut for us and has been off the track since June 2015. However he also seems in good form but we’ll know more about him after today. He’s owned by a really fun bunch headed by Michelle Folley who we are delighted to have in the yard and we’ll hopefully have some good days out with him.

We always follow horses that leave the yard to go on and do other things and we were delighted to hear that Miranda Theobald and Always Bold won their dressage class yesterday qualifying for the Retraining Of Racehorses Dressage Championships in August. They are no strangers to winning and have won plenty of dressage and combined training classes over the winter and Miranda is a perfectionist in all she does and they deserve every bit of success.

Saturday was a red letter day for our ex pupil-assistant Charlie Dee as he rode Creepy, who he’s leased from us for the season, to victory in a Point-to-Point at Kingston Blount – his first ever winner. Creepy won last time out with his trainer, Claire Hardwick, on board so is in a rich vein of form and we are delighted for Charlie, mum Chris and the whole team.