Saturday, 21 December 2019

And Still It Rains.

The rain has continued falling and Paul has resorted to sandbags to keep the overflowing drain water off the gallops so that the horses can work.
Even so, the track was very wet but the horses managed to slop through it.

Friday, 20 December 2019

Christmas Social.

Owners and staff battled their way through floods to enjoy the annual Christmas social evening at Hecton Farm.  As in previous years it took the form of a fiendish quiz devised by one of the owners (jester's outfit!) and thanks to the expertise of another owner sound and pictures were relayed to teams sitting in separate rooms.  Between rounds people mingled and replenished their plates and glasses.  One part of the quiz involved identifying horses from the past three years with parts of the image blacked out.  The stable staff proved amazingly adept at this.
Stable staff had no trouble identifying this as Mab Dab.
Final scores were Staff Room 61, Back Room 100, Living Room 109.

Saturday, 7 December 2019

New Blood At The Yard.

There was great excitement this morning among the owners as they viewed a new three year old in the yard.  It wasn't one of the horses recently added to the string but a charming collie that had great fun in the gallops field.  Aah!

Sunday, 24 November 2019

When the going is sloppy.

After a workout on the rain sodden gallops everyone needs a good wash down!
You have to get the priorities right, dogs before horses.

Saturday, 9 November 2019

Where are the horses? Haven't the foggiest!

An interesting time at the yard this morning.  Down on the gallops horses could be heard but not see!
I know they're here somewhere!
Meanwhile Mr Jack decided to help the staff clean the yard.

Sunday, 27 October 2019

Celebration Saturday

It was one of those popular champagne breakfasts this week as we celebrated Uallrightharry's Plumpton victory.  The smoked salmon was there along with the fizz and the now traditional cake in the owner's colours.

The race was rerun on the television and, after riding out, the staff were acknowledged for the hard work they put in to make the success possible.

Monday, 21 October 2019

Harry's All Right!

Linda got her new National Hunt campaign off to a great start with a winner at Plumpton today when Uallrightharry won the extended 3 mile novices handicap chase under Brendan Powell.
He was jumped off in third place in the eight runner field as they went at a modest gallop.  Sensing that the pace was too slow, Brendan pushed him into the lead and quickened after the 9th fence.  He continued to make the running until a challenger moved up two fences from home.  Harry continued to look strong then nearly spoilt it with a mistake at the last that for a moment looked as if it would end his race.  However he hardly lost momentum and travelled strongly to the line to win by 2 and a quarter lengths.
Harry's happy connections.
Earlier on the card Hab Sab had made a pleasing return to racing in the novices handicap hurdle and Mab Dab finished an encouraging 4th of six runners in the class 3 handicap hurdle, having earlier won the best turned out award..
Mab Dab after finishing 4th.

Saturday, 19 October 2019

It's That Jumping Feeling.

After all the rain in the last few days you could feel the National Hunt season in the air.  Paul has been busy building the new schooling fences with birch he collected from Fontwell earlier in the week.
And out in the gallops field the runners for Plumpton on Monday were warmed up over some obstacles.

Saturday, 28 September 2019

No winner but still a fizz morning.

The fizz was flowing at breakfast this morning as one of our owners celebrated his 70th birthday.  Some had been able to celebrate with him earlier in the week in a box at Plumpton Racecourse so it was time for the others to join in today.  As an added bonus the sun shone while the horses cantered on the gallops.

The box at Plumpton.

Fizz and cake at the yard.
And it was lovely on the gallops.

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Sun shines on another cracking Open Day.

Once again the stable was blessed with glorious weather for its Open Day.  The owners were greeted with a glass of fizz at the gate and received a very professional looking brochure (by Emmelia Potts) detailing the staff, horses for sale, owners and their sponsors and what happens to the horses after their racing careers are over.

Linda and fizz greet the owners at the gate.

The owners then had the opportunity to view their horses and socialize while enjoying top ups and nibbles.

Later everyone moved round to the lawn to watch the parade of horses with Linda's informative commentary. 

Breden with travelling companion Willow.

All the horses looked magnificent, their coats shining in the sunshine.  Prizes were given out for the "Three To Follow" competition and this year's was set in motion.

The hard working staff then received a round of appreciative applause.
There then followed a buffet lunch with plenty more to drink.  A big thank you to Linda and the staff for putting on this very successful event.

Saturday, 10 August 2019

Another Day For The Memory Bank.

Breden took part in the Shergar Cup at Ascot today giving all the connections another great experience.  Being Breden it was no surprise when the heavens opened a few minutes before race time but on this occasion it did not make a significant difference to the going.  Australian jockey Mark Zahra, riding for the Rest Of The World team, held Breden up at the rear until turning into the straight.  He made up a bit of ground but 7th was the best he could manage on this occasion.  Still he earned nearly £2000 in prize money and Mark had the satisfaction of being part of the winning team.

Thursday, 8 August 2019

No Translator Needed

The foreign phrase books have been put away as Australian jockey Mark Zahra, representing the Rest of the World team, was drawn to ride Breden in the mile handicap at Ascot's Shergar Cup meeting on Saturday.

Wednesday, 7 August 2019

Translation Apps at the Ready!

There is an air of excitement and anticipation at the yard today as we are just hours away from declaring Breden at the Shergar Cup at Ascot (Please don't rain hard this time).  Then Linda will know who is down to ride him in this international team competition.  Japanese, French and Spanish phrase books and Apps are at the ready to give the necessary instructions.

Monday, 29 July 2019

Anticipation Time.

After a quiet few weeks the anticipation is growing as the National Hunt horses return from their holidays to begin preparations for the new campaign.

Thursday, 20 June 2019

Rain washes away Breden's big day.

After all the excitement and anticipation of a runner at Royal Ascot the heavy rain through the afternoon on Wednesday meant that Linda had to pull Breden out of The Royal Hunt Cup.  It was a great shame but the ground change made it unsuitable for him.  Hopefully by saving him there will be more success to come this season.

Sunday, 26 May 2019

Celebration time.

Saturday breakfast was a very enjoyable time as we celebrated Breden's success.

Bill and Karen look at Breden chilling out in the paddock.
Linda and the owners with trophies, rug, champagne and Breden cakes!
Even Breden has come to join the party!

Monday, 20 May 2019

Welcome home King Of Newbury.

Breden and the staff celebrate the hard work that earned them the Newbury victory on Saturday.

Saturday, 18 May 2019

King Of Newbury!!

Breden returned to Newbury, possibly his favourite course, and notched up another victory.  Ridden by Robert Winston in the one mile handicap on the straight course he held a position in the middle of the 14 runner field.  He began to make headway two furlongs out and took the lead just inside the final furlong.  He kept on well and in an exciting finish was able to hold on at the line by a head, making it three wins out of three visits to the course.  He added another £24 000 to his season's impressive winnings and is truly the star of the stable, rewarding Linda and her staff for all their hard work.

Monday, 13 May 2019

Near Miss!

Miss Malarky went oh so close to winning her first race when going down by just half a length in a novices handicap hurdle at Kempton today.  Ridden by 7 pound claimer Philip Donovan she took a position in midfield in the 2 mile 5 furlong contest.  As the race went on horses dropped away one by one and she found herself going well in the leading 5 runners turning for home.  She boldly withstood some bumping on that final bend and seemed to have plenty of running in her. She ran on all the way to the line but was unlucky to find one horse with her that just edged her into second place, but at the rewarding odds of 40/1.

Saturday, 13 April 2019

Time For Champagne, Smoked Salmon and Cake.

It was a celebration breakfast this morning as we were finally able to get all involved together to celebrate Uallrightharry's win of a couple of weeks ago.  There was plenty of food and drink to enjoy and a bubbly atmosphere prevailed.

Saturday, 30 March 2019

More To shout About!

A brilliant two days for Linda and the yard as Breden followed up on Uallrightharry’s victory by finishing an excellent third in the flat season opening highlight “The Lincoln Handicap” at Doncaster.  The sun played its part by drying out the ground to “Good, good to firm in places” which is the sort of surface Breden thrives on.  His stall 14 draw proved to be a good one as the field massed towards the centre and jockey, Graham Lee, had him in the middle of the pack early on.  At halfway he had moved into the front eight and he ran on gamely into the final couple of furlongs picking off several more rivals. He battled on behind the two market leaders to finish in a photo for third place, confirmed a dead heat, just 3 lengths behind the winner.  A great run in the high profile class 2 event.
Graham described Breden as a complete legend, an absolute credit to racing and his connections. Brave and genuine, wished there were more horses like him. A privilege to ride and exactly as Linda and Karen described him. 

Friday, 29 March 2019

It's Win, Win for Harry.

It was a double win for Uallrightharry at Fontwell today.  He started off by winning the "Best Turned Out" award for groom Aimee before going on to win the 3 mile 2 furlong handicap chase under Brendan Powell.  In his first ever handicap he was jumped off in the middle of the field of seven..  Two horses set out to make the pace and soon Harry took up a position between them and the chasing group.  Harry jumped well until he blundered at the 12th fence momentarily unbalancing Brendan.  They quickly recovered and this seemed to focus his concentration.  He maintained his 3rd position until closing up approaching the open ditch (the 3rd last) where he moved in between the front two, taking the lead himself 2 out.  He ran on well from there to win by 3 and a quarter lengths with the third placed horse a further 16 lengths behind.  A great day for his deserving owner, Sally Stanier.

Aimee with "Best Turned Out" Harry.
Brendan unsaddles Uallrightharry as Linda looks on.

Monday, 18 March 2019

Concorde Flies To The Finish

Royal Concorde put his novice hurdle form behind him when finishing a good third at Plumpton today.  A first time tongue tie seemed to make all the difference on his handicap debut over 2 miles.  Ridden by Tom Garner he was encouraged from flag fall to take a prominent part.  Once in the leading three he galloped strongly and turning for home he had his nose in front.  One of four horses almost level over the final flight, he could find no extra but battled on gamely to hold onto third place, beaten just 2 and a half lengths by the winner.  This was a pleasant change of fortunes for his patient owner.
Royal Concorde holds onto third place at the line.

Saturday, 9 March 2019

Breden brings back the smiles.

After a week of tragedy and disappointment for the yard Breden showed us the happier side of the sport when he finished an excellent second in a valuable race at Wolverhampton today. In the Lincoln Trial Handicap he set off on the inside in midfield under Robert Winston.  He moved closer with half a mile to go and took the lead with over a furlong to go.  He ran on well, holding all but one runner at bay to pick up a nice prize of over £9000 at the rewarding odds of 14/1.
Yesterday in the same ownership, Mr Jack finished 4th in a handicap hurdle at Sandown Park.

Saturday, 16 February 2019

Retirement Celebration.

Today the Saturday breakfast was held at Hecton Farm to celebrate the career and retirement of Itoldyou.  In addition to his connections, lots of the Saturday regulars came to raise a glass to him.
Various items of memorabilia were brought along including race DVDs and the syndicate organizer was presented with one of Itoldyou's shoes mounted on a wood block.

After breakfast everyone went outside to give him a pat and some carrots, and also say hello to Red Anchor (Ginger) who was stabled alongside.

Finally Red Anchor and Itoldyou were turned out in one of the paddocks, and if ever proof was needed that the correct decision regarding retirement while still sound had been made the following video shows two very happy horses.

Wednesday, 13 February 2019

Back Racing And Nearly A Winner

Racing resumed today, after the forced shutdown due to equine, flu and Linda had runners at Plumpton.  Mr Jack was her star performer as he finished second in the 2 and a half mile handicap hurdle. Brendan Powell had him on the inside close up behind the leaders for the first two miles and at the end of the back straight for the final time it was clear that Mr Jack and the favourite were going the best.  They battled it out up the home straight with the favourite coming out just the better by one length.  Mr Jack has run consistently good races this season and surely the win can't be far away.

Monday, 4 February 2019

Stable Stars

Great news for Linda and the yard when they learnt that they had been awarded two stars in the 2019 Lycetts Team Champion Awards.  They were told that, "Your nomination was very good and the yard has been awarded 2 stars, which denotes a yard that has shown very good levels of team ethos and staff engagement". The assessment criteria for Lycetts Team Champion Award are based on The Winning Approach, a best practice standard developed for the NTF by consultants Sport and Beyond. They include effective recruitment and induction systems, a safe and positive working environment, developing staff to fulfil their potential, and rewarding achievement. Linda and the team equalled or bettered several high profile training establishments.  Linda is hoping that they can achieve the 3 star level for 2020.

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Birthday Delight

As part of birthday celebrations, Hab Sab ran in Richard Dean's colours at Plumpton this afternoon.  Making his seasonal reappearance under Tom Garner he was ridden close to the leaders in the 2 mile handicap hurdle.  The ground had softened in the afternoon's rain and Hab Sab seemed to relish the conditions and he was still galloping through the gloom as others dropped away.  He was still close up turning for home and was able to delight his connections by taking third place.

Hab Sab (left, pink cap) finishing third.

Sunday, 13 January 2019

Almost The Hat Trick.

Breden came very close to making it three wins in a row when he finished second in a Class 2 handicap over a mile at Lingfield yesterday under top weight.  Whether by design or circumstances Robert Winston found himself at the rear of the six runner field in the first furlong.  He had to sit there until the finishing straight where he hoped a gap would appear.  Unfortunately one lightly weighted horse (Breden was giving him almost 2 stone) was already making the best of his way home and though Breden was able to reel the others in he could never get on terms with the leader who held him by a length at the line.

Sunday, 6 January 2019

Jack Rounds The Day Off Nicely.

Mr Jack concluded a busy day for the yard at Plumpton in style.  After Royal Concorde, Madam Anna and Uallrightharry had furthered their experience in novices' hurdles, Mr Jack finished 2nd in the concluding handicap hurdle.  Tom Garner had him quickly to the front and he engaged in a duel with a rival that included bumping at a couple of hurdles.  Jack was not intimidated and asserted supremacy over this rival as the rest of the field closed three out.  He was collared by one of the joint favourites but ran on well to keep second place.
Mr Jack cools down while connections discuss the run.