NH Fixtures & Sales Dates

Fri Sep 21
Newton Abbot
Sun Sep 23
Plumpton, Uttoxeter
Tue Sep 25
Warwick

Entries & Recent Form

Bold Perk continued his fine run of form since joining the Pond House team by winning his second chase within the space of ten days.  He didn't always seem to be travelling that comfortably, but in the end he won by a comfortable fifteen lengths under young Conor O'Farrell.  He is entered again for this afternoon (this time over hurdles) and the step up to 3m1/2f should suit him.  If he is none the worse for yesterday's exertions he should have an excellent chance of going in again.

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Yesterday was a busy afternoon for David at the first day of the sales at Saint Cloud in France when he was the successful bidder on three lots including a three year old full brother to Grands Crus called Gevrey Chambertin.  He was also quick to snap-up Taratata Sivola who finished a close second in an Auteuil handicap chase a couple of weeks ago, as well as Bladoun, an untried three year old son of Smadoun.  With over another two hundred lots to go through the ring this afternoon there could be a fair contingent on their way back across the Channel to Pond House.

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I did say yesterday that I was concerned about the form of the Sir Michael Stoute yard and I am obviously not the only one who is worried as last year's Derby and Arc hero, Workforce is on the drift ahead of this weekend's Eclipse at Sandown.  It is now seventeen days and twenty nine runners since the Stoute team enjoyed a winner and as you know, you should follow stables in form.  The Newmarket trainer is certainly out of form at present although I am sure that they will turn it around before long.

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The stable's runner at Uttoxeter, Bold Perk performed creditably at Uttoxeter yesterday afternoon in the staying handicap hurdle.  He looked to have the race in safe keeping but was just worn down by Diddley Dee in the closing stages.  The pair of them came 29 lengths clear of the third and while he didn't win, I am sure that the handicapper will not have been dissuaded from giving Bold Perk a fair hike in the weights this week.  I do wonder how Diddley Dee beat Some Catch though - the pair of them met last time out and Some Catch got the verdict by some margin and there wasn't much of a pull in the weights yesterday...I suppose if the form worked out every time there wouldn't be any bookies!

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Today sees the Summer National at Uttoxeter over 3 1/2 miles - it is not quite the test that it used to be having been shortened in recent years, although it will still be quite demanding (especially after all the recent rain).  I say the Summer National, but it is more like the Winter National!  There is good prizemoney on offer of around £40,000 and while we don't have a runner in the big one, we will be represented at the meeting by David's 500th winner Bold Perk who is bidding to follow-up his Hereford success.  It should certainly be an interesting contest as our runner switches back to hurdles and is due for a big rise in the weights, while he takes on a Tim Vaughan runner who is officially rated 31lbs lower than his current chase mark.

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David participated in another charity cricket match last night, this time down at Culmstock Cricket Club.  Former Somerset cricketer Keith Parsons was the secret weapon for the Friends of Chilrens Hospice South West XI, while Tom Scudamore put together the opposing team.  Sadly Tom could not participate due to his healing shoulder, although he was there to support his men.  I am pleased to say that with the incentive of a cash reward from his father, David fared a little better with the bat than last time - Martin offered him a shilling a run (the same as his father used to give him during his cricketing days) and will be on the phone to his bank manager this morning to sort out the princely sum of twelve shillings!

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Racing is a dangerous profession and while it is generally accepted that it is the jockeys who are at most risk, there was a close thing at Warwick yesterday involving the course doctor.  One of the horses lashed out and caught him on the shoulder - if he had caught him a few inches further over I wouldn't like to think about what might have happened.  Anyway, the racecourse vet was on hand to offer assistance and the doctor was okay (if a little shaken-up) and racing was allowed to continue.  It just goes to show that all of the people working in the industry earn their money.

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