Thursday, 6 February 2014

We have entered Rosie (Epistle) and Dolly (Velvet Royale) for the mares race at Larkhill on Saturday so we schooled them both plus Dug (Val D'Auberge) and Flash who was the crash dummy to stop Rosie from running out.We couldn't do it the normal way as nothing is straight forward with Rosie and if we tried to show her the fences and then turn away she would almost certainly plant and refuse to go an inch, so to trick her into it we cantered around the round gallop (which has the fences in the middle) and then come off the track, onto the grass, pop over the hurdles, then going in the same direction, around again pop the hurdles and then the big fences. Harry Beswick was riding her, Toby was on Dolly, Pete on Flash and Dickie on Dug - She ended up in the lead, going a tad faster than desired but absolutely loved it and jumped like a bunny - Whether she does the same in her race on Saturday remains to be seen but at least at Larkhill they only go past the horse boxes once so the temptation won't be there to pull up after once around as she appeared to do at Whitfield. She has enormous talent and it would be so lovely to focus that talent into racing as she has been, quite frankly, a bit of a nightmare, and that is putting it mildly....
All the other horses are in cracking form, apart from Jess, who is full of herself but has a slight infection in her foot which is almost right now but we won't run her now until the ground comes to her liking.
We have another new recruit called Exclusive Rights (Scruffy) who was at Charlie Longsdon's last season and absolutely hated racing and being in a big yard so she is here for a bit of TLC. She has been a delight so far and seems to love her routine here already..
We are enjoying a brief lull before the next 'storm' - The weather has been absolutely atrocious lately but compared to the south of the country we have got off relatively lightly. The damage that has been done to this railway in Dawlish will take at least six weeks to repair and it is the only railway into Cornwall. The South West is crying out for better infra structure but successive governments have just ignored their pleas. It seems quite extraordinary that they are hell bent on building this HS2 railway at a cost of at least 44 billion which only 3% of the UK population want, but will not spend any money on improving existing railways and flood defenses which are so clearly needed. Grrrr!

Storm damage at Dawlish