NH Fixtures & Sales Dates

Sun Dec 16
Carlisle, Southwell
Mon Dec 17
Ffos Las, Plumpton
Tue Dec 18
Catterick, Fakenham

Entries & Recent Form

Much as anticipated with only a handful of fixtures last week, it was a quiet one for the stable on the runners front. Indeed, we only had four runners under rules, while Iniciar and Clare Wyatt were our much publicised representatives in the charity race at Newton Abbot on Friday. Jumps fixtures for the week ahead are once again looking a little thin on the ground so we may have a rare flat runner or two later in the week.

Promise from Prince

Of our runners, I thought that Irish Prince produced an improved performance to finish a close runner-up at Worcester on Wednesday. Making his handicap debut and up in trip on better ground, he travelled well in rear and making smooth headway, he looked as though he may prevail halfway up the run-in. He was just worn down close home, but there was plenty of reason for encouragement in this performance and hopefully he should be winning something similar before too long. Staying chases will be very much his game longer term.


The fixture at Worcester also marked the 300th anniversary of racing at the track and that is quite an achievement, so congratulations to everyone involved. They made a real effort on Wednesday with former legends of the turf such as former champion flat jockey Joe Mercer and Jimmy Lindley (former jockey and agent to Steve Cauthen) in attendance, while the continuing fine weather meant that racegoers had a most enjoyable afternoon.

Travelling head lad certainly enjoyed himself at Worcester. In fact, he was the lucky winner of the ‘Golden Ticket’ – an envelope containing £100 worth of High Street vouchers which was hidden in one of the saddling boxes for stable staff to find as part of the Racing Staff week.

Welfare Benefits

It was a good day at Newton Abbot on Friday as well, with plenty of the staff from Pond House in attendance to lend their support to Clare Wyatt and Iniciar in the charity race, run in aid of Racing Welfare. Although unable to trouble the judge Clare had a great spin and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. With further donations coming in over the weekend, the latest tally for her fundraising has reached over £1,900…a fantastic effort I am sure you will agree. Indeed, Clare raised the most of all competitors in the line-up and we are enormously proud of her.

Many thanks to Racing Welfare and Betfair for putting on the activities for stables up and down the country, it is a fantastic initiative and I know that the staff really look forward to it. We will be hosting our own staff barbecue (supported by Racing Welfare) later this month.

Clare Wyatt with the Pond House cheerleaders 

The Next Mamlook

I paid a visit to the Arqana Sales at Deauville last week but to be honest, I thought that the horses in training were a little think this year so we came away empty handed. Even so, there are other opportunities, including the Newmarket Sales which take place this week, where we bought Mamlook – not only did he win us a Holloways Hurdle at Ascot, but he also landed the Chester Cup on the flat, while also placed in the Ascot Stakes and two Cesarewitches! I will be trying my best to find another one like him, so if you would be interested in joining us, please do get in touch for a no obligation chat about your requirements. 

The Week Ahead

Looking to this week and there are no runners from the stable today (Monday), although Chato will represent the Pond House team at Uttoxeter tomorrow evening. Making his first start for us since purchasing him from the Doncaster sales, we have opted for the 2m7½f handicap hurdle. It will be his first try at the trip but his pedigree and style of racing would give cause for optimism that he should stay well. We will know more about him after tomorrow.

There are no jumps fixtures on Wednesday or Thursday which is probably a good thing…I understand there is a certain football match taking place on Wednesday and I would imagine there are going to be a few sore heads on Thursday win or lose. It is just like the race planning committee knew!

Percy Street holds flat entries at Ascot and York on Friday and Saturday, while he also has engagements at Ffos Las on Friday and Newton Abbot on Saturday over timber. He ran very well for a long way in the Ascot Stakes at the Royal meeting last month on his debut for the stable and I hope that he can build on that encouraging effort.

Grab A Bargain

Take The High Road, another recent addition (and currently for sale) has an entry in the 2m handicap hurdle at Ffos Las. He was a fair performer on the level and starts his hurdling career at Pond House from a workable mark of 104. He will give any potential owner plenty of fun over the coming months at a very reasonable price. Ilovemints also holds entries at Ffos Las and Newton Abbot, while progressive flat performer Acker Bilk could go to Salisbury on Saturday.  Don’t forget, for all the latest news on running plans you can read Chester’s Daily Chat or follow us on Twitter @DavidPipeRacing.

A Sad Loss

Finally, I was saddened to learn of the passing of John Dunlop over the weekend. Champion trainer on the level in 1995, he was a fabulous trainer and a great gentleman. While a great loss to racing, his legacy will nonetheless live on through sons Ed and Harry who are excellent trainers in their own right. Our sympathies are with them and John’s wife, Sue.

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