Martin’s Blog 4th February

A lot has happened since our last blog and although we have been quiet for the last few days on the runners front, we’ve had plenty going on and visitors here too.

On Saturday morning Chris Dee brought friend Jane Brookes to see Eclat Des Mottes work under Harry Greasby. Mark Caswell was in (Solstice Star) and Warren Marston (Beneagles).

We worked Brillare Momento, Beneagles, Solstice Star, Cotswold Prince, Eclat Des Mottes, Run A Rig, Samtara, Lucky Circle, Be Thankful, Debden Bank, Mozzaro and Ten Past Midnight. The rest cantered.

There were tears from all mid morning as we waved Bobble Emerald off to pastures new and to a wonderful retirement home with Carol James in Coberley. Bobble, owned by David Bishop, Colin Bowkley and Mike Parker, has been with us the summer of 2014 and has given us all so much fun. He’s won 6 races over hurdles including giving Tom Queally his 2nd winner in the Flat Jockeys Hurdle Race at Lingfield where they didn’t see another rival. However, undoubtedly the winner we will all never forget was when Harry Stock made all around Cheltenham in October 2017 at odds of 33/1.

Brillare Momento had won the first race of the day and this was the final race and we’d chosen to go there as a bit of a punt instead of a less valuable race at a smaller course the following week. It certainly paid off – although a loose horse hampered him up the run in which the Stewards looked into for quite some time and the longer it went on the more anxious we became. I went into the Stewards’ Room with Harry to make sure we kept the race – we did, they’d done nothing wrong.

It was Harry’s first Cheltenham winner and with the Stock Family such close friends and all of them there to enjoy it too – it was very special. Giving David, Colin and Mike a Cheltenham winner after so many years of loyalty as owners with me made me very proud indeed.

We wish him a long and happy retirement and am sure he will be thoroughly spoiled – we’ve already heard that he’s settled in well and Carol promises to keep in touch. Good luck to them both.

Tony Senter brought friends Ken and David to watch Mozzaro and catch up with us all yesterday morning and it was lovely to see them. After lunch they called into Batsford Stud where Alan and Anna Varey looked after them well.

A fabulous weekend of racing at Leopardstown and no doubt the crowd brought the roof down when Faugheen won – wonderful for him to win another Grade 1 at the age of 12. Brilliant.

Such sad news in the world of racing over the past two days with news of the untimely death of James Banks yesterday and Robert Alner today. Both a loss to the world of racing but the last 24 hours has shown what a wonderful extended family racing really is. May they both rest in peace.