Entries & Recent Form

Last week was certainly one to remember for the Pond House team with winners coming left, right and centre (back-to-back doubles book-ended by victories at Exeter and Market Rasen). With 6 winners from just 14 runners and some places to boot, I couldn’t be more pleased with our start to the new campaign. In truth, the horses have been running well for some considerable time now although we have been flying under the radar somewhat. The resetting of the tally’s with the start of the new season just serves to bring it more to people’s attention.

Another Satisfied Customer!

Of course, you can only enjoy success when you have the right ammunition and I would like to thank my loyal owners for their continued trust and patronage. One who is particularly happy at present is Fergus Wilson. Fergus has been poorly of late but he has enjoyed considerable recent success with his three horses and has kindly put pen to paper for us once again…

“Winning is the best elixir! I have been ill for some weeks now and spent the last two days in bed missing my horses Percy Street and Van Gogh du Granit winning on Thursday and Friday when ridden by Tom Scudamore and David Noonan respectively.

I only own three horses in training and all three have won for me recently. Rathlin Rose won for me at Ascot, completing an historic double under Tom Scudamore when followed home by Van Gogh du Granit to take a 1-2 at Ascot on the last day of March.

What a buy Van Gogh du Granit has proven to be. Before he came to David Pipe’s yard the horse had never run over three miles. David has worked on Van Gogh’s stamina and converted the horse into a very talented staying chaser. Just look at the margin of his latest victory, thirteen lengths going away. I have had it a few times with David Pipe – he certainly has the knack of getting the best out of horses and winning by incredible lengths over both fences and hurdles.

David Noonan is certainly the rider for Van Gogh but what a ride by Tom Scu on Percy Street on Thursday evening. What a consistent little horse he has been for the yard and he will now try novice chases. However, he will be taking a detour to go to Royal Ascot on the flat for the Ascot Stakes over 2½ miles which is the race all the jumps trainers put their best hurdlers in!

Mrs Wilson wants to go to Ascot so we must all do as ordered! She has also purchased her ticket for the Velka Pardubicka in the Czech Republic in October and Van Gogh and Rathlin Rose are both entered in the world famous steeplechase. What an amazing journey we have had.

This has been a tremendous couple of months for my three horses but we all have our feet on the ground. It may be a lot of fun participating in the famous races, but our bread and butter races are thought out well by David and the team and in the last couple of days I have picked up £7,000 and £8,000 in first place prize money. David has a strike rate currently of 43% wins to runners, a statistic any trainer would be envious of. The good days have returned to Nicholashayne!”

Many thanks to Fergus for yet another glowing endorsement, your kind words and support mean a great deal and hopefully will help to illustrate the inclusive and enjoyable atmosphere that we try to promote at Pond House. We are always looking to strengthen our team and still have room for more horses and new owners.

Winners Galore!

Story Of Friends started the ball rolling with a ready success in the bumper at Exeter on Tuesday. Ridden by David Noonan, he cut through the pack nicely and was well on top on the closing stages despite still showing signs of inexperience. He is a lovely stamp of a horse who has improved with each outing to date. Owners Anne and Garth Broom of Brocade Racing owned our first winner last season and again this term.

You Say What and Buster Edwards completed an across the card double for the stable on Wednesday. You Say What was a convincing winner of the staying handicap chase at Newton Abbot under Tom Scudamore. He was given a speculative entry for the meeting owing to the forecast rain and with the deluges materialising on top of the watered ground, it couldn’t have worked out better for our charge. You would not normally expect to get ground like that at the Devon track in May so this was certainly a satisfying victory for forward planning.

Buster Edwards was successful in the staying novices’ hurdle at Fontwell, sticking on resolutely in the closing stages under David Noonan. He could run again shortly.

Mr Clarkson proved a popular winner at Worcester on Thursday, powering home in the 2m7f handicap hurdle. He had dropped a little in the weights following an absence through injury and showed the benefit of a wind operation since his last start. This was much more like the Mr Clarkson of old so I was thrilled to get him back for his syndicate of owners who love and adore him.

Percy Street (pictured top, and as mentioned earlier by Fergus Wilson) completed the double for the stable when narrowly holding on in the 2m4f handicap hurdle at Wincanton under a powerful ride from Tom Scudamore. He has been tremendously consistent, although difficult to win with so hopefully now he has managed to get his head in front, he will be able to maintain the winning thread.

Our final winner of the week was Van Gogh du Granit who landed the 3m handicap chase in easy fashion at Market Rasen on Friday. Despite being a ten year old, such was the manner of victory that we may have to turn him out again quickly at Aintree on Friday under a penalty.

With places from the likes of Ourmullion and Dream Free as well, I am delighted to have the string in such good order…long may it continue!


Clockwise (from top left): Story Of Friends, You Say What, Buster Edwards, Van Gogh du Granit, Percy Street & Mr Clarkson

The Week Ahead

This week is looking like a quieter one on the runners front with nothing going today (Monday). Druide Premier is declared to run at the replacement meeting at Ffos Las tomorrow and the BHA are to be commended for acting quickly to secure this additional fixture (and the one at Ludlow) at short notice.

Grade 2 French bumper winner Ekayburg switches codes on Wednesday as he contests the 1m3½f novices’ contest on the level. He is certainly better than he has demonstrated thus far so hopefully this change will bring about some improvement. Good apprentice jockey Finley Marsh takes the ride.

We are likely to have a runner in the valuable handicap hurdle at Newton Abbot on Wednesday (where we have three entries), although progressive novice Legal History is likely to wait for Perth on Thursday.

Van Gogh du Granit will likely run at Aintree on Friday where he has a choice of engagements, whilst Mount Nelly will run in the bumper and will be partnered by talented amateur rider Fergus Gillard who has been enjoying success in the point-to-point sphere. Airton, Timeforben and Three Star General are also engaged on the card.

Ourmullion, Stream Lady, Teaser, Airton, Percy Street, Buster Edwards and Three Star General are all entered at the weekend and we will make decisions on their participation later in the week.

New Addition

I was pleased to secure talented flat gelding Ballard Down after convincingly landing the claimer at Wolverhampton last Tuesday. It may only have been a 7f contest, but he picked up well in the closing stages and he looks to be crying out for further (indeed he was a winner over a mile as a two year old) and is a more stoutly bred half-brother to two hurdles winners so there is every reason to think that he can make a promising novice hurdler. The latent ability is clearly there (he was contesting the Lincoln last season from a mark of 102) and he has already been learning to jump around our loose school. He is currently for sale and could prove to be a real bargain – take a look at our horses for sale page for more details…

Well-Earned Rest

Finally, we deliberately left it until after the band of rain had gone through before turning the horses out to grass for their summer break. It looks like the right decision now following a gorgeous weekend and another good weather forecast for the week ahead. They will enjoy a well-earned rest and benefit from some grass and summer sun. It’s alright for some!

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