The sunshine continues and more horses going out in the field for their holidays. We had a wonderful morning here on Saturday where we welcomed a large group of Cotswold Lockdowners who own “Herecomeshogan” and a few others too – there are over 50 in his ownership so we split the visit over the last two Saturdays to comply with the guidelines. Last Saturday’s group certainly had the best weather and it was fabulous to welcome so many friends old and new to the yard.
A good time was certainly had by all and they not only got to know the team here, watched the horses on the gallops but also went to see Hogan enjoying his summer holiday in his picturesque field surrounded by lots of his mates but also back in the yard there was plenty of fizz and food to enjoy. The group also go to know Mr Mafia and Sarasota Star better as they were given a pick of grass on our mound before heading off to Worcester Races.
Sadly Mr Mafia found the extra 3lbs the Handicapper gave him for finishing 2nd last time out much more of a handicap than we feared he may do and also the ground not as suitable as last time and he was well beaten. He came back safe and sound though but needs a bit of help from the Handicapper to get his head back in front. Frustrating as he’s in such good form. So lovely though to spend time with his owners, Peter and Jane Boggis and their friends Paul and Hilary, at the course and have a drink with them too – things we used to take so much for granted. Freddie & Harry also came along and Freddie is getting used to being allowed to go into the Paddock – something they have to be 12 years old to do so Harry still has another year. Freddie will not look over 12 years old for quite some time though and the Paddock Supervisor was quite surprised that the answer to his ‘is he 12’ question was ‘no, he’s 13!’. He waited for 12 years to be allowed into the Paddock and didn’t get to go racing as a 12 year old!
We didn’t run Sarasota Star as every jockey I spoke to gave a different going description – it has to be genuinely good ground to run him so we try again at Southwell tomorrow. If I’m not happy with it for him there then he’ll have his summer holiday and make his chasing debut in the late summer/autumn instead. He’s in good form so I’m keen to run if safe enough. Robsam heads there too.
Finally a very happy 70th Birthday today to owner and great friend of ours here, Jon Hughes who is currently playing golf in Greece with his wife Jack. Jon’s been a fantastic help to us and, until recently, was our Chairman for quite some years. Upon stepping down ahead of this milestone he mentioned the words “slowing down” however we’ve seen no signs of that yet! Have a good one Jon!