Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Another busy day. All horses either ridden or on the walker. My 'quiet' horses from last year, Leon and Paddy seem to have taken on a personality change and are completely different horses. Yesterday I was walking Leon home after a hack and the dogs came running past - Leon was having none of it and tried to chase after them leaping in the air and striking out with his front hooves. Today on Paddy we had hacked up the hill and were going to walk down the all weather gallop, Alex Hales's string of 12 was in front of us and Ben Case's string of 10 was behind. When we got to the bottom of the hill Alex's lot cantered to the starting circle. Paddy thought he was going to be left behind, stuck his head between his legs and broncked all the way until the front lot pulled up. I was sure I was going to get bucked off and was just thinking that it doesn't get much more embarrassing than this - being bucked off in front of all those sniggering (and much younger) jockeys. Thank goodness he stopped when he did. Although secretly I was absolutely delighted with both him and Leon's behaviour as they were too quiet last season and didn't feel like racehorses. Leon had come straight from Paul Nicholls and had never had a break and Paddy had a hard season in Ireland, winning a very competitive maiden, before coming to us. They have obviously really benefited from their holiday and it's very exciting to feel the difference in them. Laverty was also very full of himself - the younger one's you would expect to be naughty like Dolly, Doris, Whisper and Subo were all as good as gold. Eeyore and Cloud are waiting to be shod and haven't been ridden yet although I rather suspect that they will behave as expected and let the side down...
We watched a programme last night called 'Inside Nature's Giants' where a team of vets dissected an elite racehorse that had been euthanised because of leg problems to find out why such a big animal is such a supreme athlete. They showed the spring system (it's legs) that propels it to 45 mph, it's massive organs ( a horse's heart is twice as big as a cow's) I couldn't believe how big it's lungs were. What it did show, though. apart from how amazing a horse's anatomy is, was how vulnerable a horse is to injury when they are at peak performance.
We are treating ourselves tonight to a curry, which is about to be delivered to the shepherds hut. It doesn't get better than that, does it?!