Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Christmas Crackers

The build up for the Boxing Day runners took on a festive theme.
Mab Dab
However unconventional, it worked a treat with both horses winning the "Best Turned Out" award, £25 for Katie and Mab Dab and £25 for Alex and Itoldyou, though neither of them appeared in tinsel on the course.
Katie after the race with Mab Dab
It had an even better effect on Itoldyou as he finished a very competitive 3 and a quarter mile chase in second place. He was one of 12 who went to post and Tommy Dowling had him in 4th to 6th position for the first couple of circuits. He jumped well.  He was one of three who pulled clear of the pack going out on the final circuit and a great jump at the fourth last saw him take the lead.  He stumbled a bit on landing at the second last but kept on going, still leading over the last.  However one of the pack had made steady progress up the home straight and joined him just after the last.  They had a great battle to the line with Itoldyou finally being beaten into second place by half a length but well clear of the third placed horse.  
Alex and Katie lead Itoldyou in.

Saturday, 17 December 2016

The lead up to Christmas is all go!!!

The days may be shorter but there has been no let up in activity at the stable as we approach Christmas.  Earlier in the week the staff enjoyed their Christmas party at the local golf club.  The photograph below is, I understand, one of the few for public display!  Whatever, it was a great evening, an excellent team bonding session and a boost for all in this gloomy weather.
On Friday Linda, Karen and several of "the girls" went to the Olympia Horse Show.  They all had a great time and especially enjoyed the "Flat" versus "Jump" jockeys competition and the Shetland Pony Grand National.

Today the first lot was larger than usual with a guest appearance from Tom Copeland who was a rider here several years ago.  He was allowed the privilege of riding the now retired Red Anchor.  Entering into the festive spirit the riders added a little tinsel to their helmets.
Breakfast was also livened up with a glass or two of Prosecco to celebrate the naming of two horses, Jolly Jet and Pippa The Dancer.
We wish all the followers of this blog a very Happy Christmas and a successful 2017.

Monday, 12 December 2016

Home From Home.

When workers at the stable want a short break what do they do?  They go out riding horses of course. Karen, accompanied by Ben, and James went to Ireland at the weekend for a spot of hunting.

And not only was the riding thrilling, but the views were stunning too.

Monday, 28 November 2016

An Encouraging Plumpton.

It was a day full of promise at Plumpton today.  Linda sent four horses, accompanied by a host of owners, to enjoy a sunny but chilly day at the races and they were soon warmed by the equine performances.  First up was Clonusker who was making his seasonal debut.  He made the running in the 2 mile handicap hurdle and it was only entering the home straight that he began to tire, eventually just being pipped on the line for 4th place.
Next up was Itoldyou who came back to form, finishing second in the three and a quarter mile handicap chase under Tommy Dowling.  After an indifferent start he warmed to his task, running on to take second place near the line three lengths behind the favourite.
Itoldyou comes back after finishing second.
Finally Linda ran both Royal Concorde and Hab Sab in the bumper, with both showing signs of ability when finishing close together in 5th and 6th.
Royal Concorde and Hab Sab

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Training In The Wet.

Despite the recent heavy rainfall, not all wet training is done outdoors.  Linda felt that Clonusker would benefit from a session in the local water treadmill at Angley Stud in Cranbrook.  He certainly seems to be enjoying it.

Monday, 14 November 2016

Looking Good.

With the coming of the rain easing the ground, Linda was able to send horses to Plumpton today. Due South made only his second visit to a racecourse when he competed in the novice chase.  The afternoon started well for him when he won the "Best Turned Out" award earning Karen £50.  The race itself may only have had 4 runners but it was a hot contest with two of the runners trying hard to set themselves up for the £50 000 Cheltenham bonus.  While they battled away out front, Andrew Thornton gave Due South a sympathetic introduction to fences.  He jumped really well until he got tired three from home and he started to jump a bit to his right.  Andrew made sure that he finished, and with one of the fancied horses crashing out, Due South was rewarded with third place, earning £821 for his owners.
Karen leads round a beautifully turned out Due South.
Third place, well done.
Later on the card, Itoldyou made his seasonal debut and enjoyed himself, finishing 7th.

Saturday, 29 October 2016

Up The Hill.

With the ground remaining dry rendering the Wierton hill gallop unusable, some horses went over to the Jarvis's all weather hill gallop at Hollingbourne where they had a good workout.

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Breakfast Bonanza.

It was packed out today for Saturday breakfast.  Every chair in the kitchen area was taken by owners, including at the staff table.  They were treated to sausages, bacon, mushrooms, baked beans, hash browns, scrambled egg, and black pudding, followed by flapjacks and marmalade cake, all washed down with tea or coffee.  Thank you Linda, Paul and Dick who worked so hard.  Many of the owners made it down to the track to watch the horses work.
The horses looked well and happy as they cantered in the beautiful autumn sunshine.

The "B" riders enjoyed taking the racehorses for their cool down.

Saturday, 24 September 2016

A Busy Week, But Has It Driven Them Potty?

It has been a very busy week at the yard.  As well as the usual routine of getting the horses fit and ready to race there have been a few distractions.  On Tuesday the mobile unit from The British Racing School called in and gave some very useful tuition to the aspiring jockeys.
They were able to ride on the track then watch video replays of their performances, before learning how to improve on the equicizer.

Oliver and Alex receive tuition.
As a way of rewarding the staff for all their hard work recently Linda put on a staff barbecue, 
which was followed by a vigorous and highly competitive game of rounders.
As we watched the horses warm up in the school before Saturday breakfast we began to wonder if all the week's excitement had sent them a little potty.
However it turns out that they are very cheap and make excellent ground level cups to rest the jumping poles in!

Sunday, 11 September 2016

Fantastic Open Day

The weather was just perfect for this year's Owners Open Day, dry, sunny and warm without being too hot.  There was a good turn out of owners viewing their horses and taking the opportunity to catch up with acquaintances while enjoying a soft drink or Pimms. The staff, a very important team, were then introduced.
The team.
Then came the parade of horses with Linda's informative commentary.
Everyone looks on ready for the parade of horses.
The horses looked magnificent as the sun reflected off their glistening coats.

The prize money for last season's "Three To Follow" competition was given out and the forms for the new season issued.  Then it was time to partake of the delicious buffet lunch while excitedly forming plans of campaign for the months to come.
Well done Linda and team, a very successful day.

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Another Step Up The Ladder.

Karen took Kingscombe to the Edenbridge & Oxted show yesterday, and by finishing 3rd in this relatively new discipline for him, they qualified for Hickstead.
Owner, Peter Oppenheimer, Karen and Kingscombe.

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Sam Learns The Hard Way.

Sams R Man, owned by Valence Racing, made his debut at Kempton on 1st August and it was a tough lesson to learn.  In a field of 14 he was drawn one from the outside and was startled when the gates opened, leaving him quickly a few lengths behind.  He made up some of the ground and was passing a horse on the outside when it swung out and nearly knocked him over.  Again back on his heels he found his rhythm again but began to tire in the home straight and, losing touch, he was not punished in the final furlong or so.
Owners and Rab Havlin before Sam's race.

Saturday, 23 July 2016

Surprisingly busy Saturday.

The yard is usually fairly quiet for Saturday breakfast at this time of year but today it was buzzing. Several regulars made their first visits for a few weeks, some of the new syndicate were there to view their horse and others were eyeing up prospects for the future.
Malcolm with the new syndicate purchase "Cockney Seagull".
A few of the National Hunt horses were just back in after their summer holidays.
Itoldyou is back.
And so is Due South.
Kim was there to see Kafeel and he confirmed that the plan, all going well, was to aim for a return to San Moritz in the spring.
Very different conditions await Kafeel in the spring.
Down on the track prospective buyers viewed one of Linda's new purchases from Ireland.

Is this the one for us?

Saturday, 9 July 2016

Saturday's Special Event.

There was something a little different to enjoy at the stables this morning when Sharon Polding brought her 9 year old eventer, Findon Firecracker, to work on the gallops.  Earlier in the year they had competed under the G.B. flag in the Tattersals event in Ireland.  They hope to be competing at Blenheim later in the year.

The spectators, both human and equine, found it all very interesting.

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Is This The Future? For Some Things We Hope Not!

For those visiting for breakfast this morning there were hints of things to come.  The first of Linda's new acquisitions has arrived from Ireland, a well bred, big, strong 4 year old filly, who looks an exciting jumping prospect.

A less exciting window into the future was the breakdown of the dishwasher!  The owners reverted to the old traditional method and will need a winner to finance a return to normality!

However the rare treat of the sun made watching the horses on the track a pleasure.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Being Held Up Is Obviously A Sheila Thing And Praise For Glory's Turn Out!

Hold up tactics were again used on Its A Sheila Thing at Brighton this afternoon.  Under Charles Bishop she pulled a little early on as he tried to settle her at the back.  She came on the outside of the field three furlongs from home in the mile race and was soon battling it out with the leaders, finally finishing third beaten half a length and a neck.  A small drop in the weights should help her chances of victory.
In the next race Alex won £25 for his first unaided "Best Turned Out" with Praise N Glory.
Praise N Glory

Saturday, 11 June 2016

Rest And Recuperation.

A visit to the geldings (Hab Sab, Itoldyou, Mab Dab and Due South) in their holiday paddock showed them to be happy, chilling out in the fine weather.  With plenty of good grass they should be in a great state of health when they return, probably sometime in July.

Friday, 10 June 2016

Valence Racing Victory.

It's not just races that Valence Racing win, they put together a quiz team and it gained victory by the narrowest of margins (a half point) at a local school quiz night.
The successful Valence Racing quiz team. (Horses take note!)

Saturday, 28 May 2016

New Life In The Yard

A new colt foal was born on Wednesday at the yard.  Nicknamed "Harley" because he kicked as if he was starting a motor-bike, he is out of proud mum, Hopeshedoes, by Watar.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Good For A Break

It's A Sheila Thing came back after a winter break and ran a very encouraging race on the turf at Lingfield today.  In the mile and a quarter contest she was held up near the rear all the way to the home straight 3 furlongs from home.  She was then asked to move forward and she responded moving through the field to get into second place near the line.  However she was pipped on the line for this place by another horse with similar tactics and finished a pleasing 3rd at the rewarding each way odds of 66/1.
It's A Sheila Thing (pink cap) moves up in the final furlong.

Saturday, 7 May 2016

Contentment In Retirement

With the sun on their backs, Red Anchor (retired last week) and Rowe Park (retired a couple of years ago) enjoy a quiet morning's grazing in one of the paddocks.

Friday, 22 April 2016

More Plumpton Success.

Linda sent four horses to Plumpton today and it turned out to be a good day.
First Kayflin put her previous bad chasing experiences behind her when she tried the larger obstacles again.  She jumped beautifully and looked the part finishing third.
Kayflin gets a well done pat after finishing third.
Then Red Anchor won the "Best turned out" award for the three mile handicap chase.
Red Anchor beautifully turned out.
In the following race, Fifi L'Amour put last week's poor showing behind her when storming up the home straight to finish a close up third.
Fifi L'Amour comes in after her third place.
Unfortunately Clonusker was not able to add further success in the last, but all in all it was a very pleasing day.