Entries & Recent Form

Last week was a good one for the stable with us back among the winners courtesy of successes over hurdles with Miss M and on the flat with the admirable Leoncavallo.  Meanwhile, there is another exciting addition from the flat in France that is looking for an owner. 

Miss M produced an excellent first effort over hurdles when running out a ready winner of the 2m mares’ novices’ hurdle at Southwell last Monday.  A multiple winner on the flat, she had shown a good attitude on the level and impressed with her aptitude here.   Bar a mistake at the first, I thought that she jumped well and she was nicely on top in the closing stages.  She was a first winner for her delighted owner Chris Norminton and hopefully she will be the first of many.

We switched codes on Tuesday but the result was the same.  Leoncavallo (pictured above) contested the 1m6f handicap at Haydock and was a facile winner in the hands of the excellent James Doyle.  Keeping it simple, James always had Leoncavallo in a good position and kicked early in the straight with the result never in doubt thereafter as he scored by an impressive 4¾ lengths.  He has been in excellent order since joining us, finishing a narrow runner-up at Sandown on the flat, before bolting up over fences in a good time at Stratford last time.

He is a lovely, versatile performer and we may now keep him for the Cesarewitch at Newmarket in October.  He is due to take a bit of a hike for this effort and that should be enough to get him into the line-up.  I have finished second and third in the race before and would dearly love to reach the top step!

Of my other runners, To Fly Free ran a good race at Market Rasen on Sunday on her second start over hurdles.  Finishing her race much better on this sound surface, she was closing down on the odds-on winner all the way to the line and should be more than capable of winning something similar.  Bought cheaply from the Arqana Sales during the summer, she is already looking to be a good value buy and will give her owners, the David Pipe Racing Club plenty of enjoyment over the coming months.

On the same card, Paricolor was a little disappointing in the novices’ handicap chase.  He fell last time on his chasing debut at Cartmel when he looked sure to be involved in the finish and never attacked his fences with the same enthusiasm.  Only a four year old, he is much better than the bare result and there will be plenty of other days for him.

Looking to this week and we have had three runners at Uttoxeter this afternoon, whilst we will have two runners at Stratford on Wednesday with Jasmin des Bordes and David Pipe Racing Club horse Queen Adelaide set to take their chances, whilst Sexy Lot holds an engagement at Newton Abbot on Friday.

We made entries for the likes of old favourite Dell’ Arca and Mrs Miggins for Uttoxeter on Saturday, as well as a few at Cartmel on Sunday.  We will take a look at those later in the week before deciding on running plans.

Football Crazy

Some members of staff from Philip Hobbs’ team joined us on Friday night for a friendly game of football.  Whilst it was only a bit of fun, it was quite interesting to see the level of ability on both sides with some smart players in the line-ups.  For the Pond House team we were able to play Craig Wylie’s very talented son, Joe who played for Exeter’s youth team - the talent clearly comes from his mother’s side!  Meanwhile, Hobbsy’s ringer was Jay Tabb who played Premiership football for Reading and in the Championship for Ipswich, whilst he also represented the Republic of Ireland at Under 21 level.

It was a good match with the Pond House side leading until the dying minutes.  My son Jack took a turn in goal and did extremely well, although I can’t help but think that Mr Tabb was holding a little back until near the end at which point he started winning every challenge.  Indeed, he took one shot at goal which would have sent poor Jack into the middle of next week had man mountain Ashley Farrant not managed to get in the way!  The game eventually finished in an enjoyable 3-3 draw.   

The whole affair was conducted sensibly with social distancing adhered to as much as practicable in a football game, whilst we had a few beers and hotdogs afterwards.  There were a few aches and pains around the yard on Saturday morning – strangely heads as well as limbs!

Adagio An Exciting Addition

Finally, I am very excited to announce that we were the lucky bidders at Clairefontaine this afternoon for three year old Adagio.  Running over 1m4f for the first time, he made all the running under Christophe Soumillon and powered clear in the straight to record an impressive 8 length success.

The last time he ran he finished a close third at Deauville under level weights behind horses rated 95 and 101, whilst the fourth home has a mark of 89.  He looks the type to make an exciting juvenile hurdler and once he has been schooled, he will be ready to run over timber. 

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