Entries & Recent Form

Massinis_Maguire_Ascot_301010

What a great weekend for the yard, and a fantastic training performance from David to bring Massini's Maguire back to his best to win the Listed handicap chase on his first outing for the yard after an absence.  Tom Scu produce a great ride to get the nine year old gelding back up again having been headed at the last fence, in the process netting over £56,000 for connections.  Owner Alan Peterson also had a nice winner at Wetherby with Fair Along, so what a great weekend for him.

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Tuesday is the biggest day in Australia's racing calendar - the Melbourne Cup.  It is billed as the race that stops a nation, and doubtless all eyes will be on Flemington Park.  There is also a big race that takes place a little closer to home, the Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter, while Friday sees the start of the two day Breeders Cup meeting at Churchill Downs in America.  Midday will take centre stage for the European contingent in the fillies and mares turf and would crown a wonderful season for Henry Cecil.

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Congratulations to Tom Scudamore who rode his 500th winner at Wetherby yesterday afternoon aboard Royal Max in the handicap hurdle.  It is a great achievement, and people should remember that Tom is still only 28 years old, so there should be plenty of time for him to add to that tally yet.  Tom rode his first winner under rules for Martin in 1998 aboard Nordic Breeze on the flat at Warwick and he became champion amateur jockey in 2001 before turning pro.  He was announced as stable jockey at Pond House in 2007, and has since enjoyed many memorable successes including a Cheltenham Festival winner aboard An Accordion and a Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury aboard Madison du Berlais.  Tom has now equalled his grandfather Michael's career tally, although Michael Snr only rode 496 of his 500 successes in this country.  It is a fantastic milestone and we are all thrilled for him.

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I must admit that I felt sorry for young Tom Flint at Stratford yesterday afternoon.  It looked as though the young lad was about to ride his first winner under rules for his dad, John.  His mount had been well supported and was about fifteen lengths clear as he approached the last.  Unfortunately what happened next he is likely to want to forget - thehorse ran down the hurdle and lost his legs and the pair were parted.  To make matters worse, John was giving his boy a right good tongue lashing and did not realise that Attheraces had their cameras trained firmly upon them in close-up!  I did feel for the lad...it just shows that you can go from hero to zero in this game in a split second.

I learnt my lesson about arguing in public a long time ago.  Peter Scudamore had just been beaten aboard High Knowl and I was none to pleased about it.  I had a go at Scu while he was still aboard the horse - Scu said to me, "If we are going to fight, let's do it behind the stables!".  You shouldn't fall out with people in the public eye - I now know what he means, and have to concede that he was right.

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I am pleased to report that we now have the Racing Post's excellent video Stable Tour of Pond House in our media vault.  It is a very interesting piece with a good interview from David looking at his prospects for the forthcoming National Hunt season - it is well worth a look if you have a few minutes spare, and you can do so by clicking here...

Talking of the Racing Post, I was pleased to see that Lee Mottershead took my comments about the mechanical horse all in good part.  According to The Dikler in yesterday's publication, Lee is going to cut down his intake of oats!

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      Champion Hurdle winning trainer Arthur Pitt

It was an interesting day at the Newmarket Sales yesterday and it seemed (unsurprisingly) that the whole racing world had descended on Newmarket for the auctions.  Sat in the corner of the bar was a little old man, and I didn't realise that he was one of the few trainers to train three Champion Hurdle winners...it was of course, Arthur Pitt who had Persian War during his racing career, and he had some amazing stories to tell.

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The trainers of yesterday's handicap good thing Jovial had better turn him out again soon.  The three year old won by three lengths and couldn't have been more impressive.  He currently has a very modest handicap mark of just 51, but he will be taking some hike up the weights after this success.  His 3lbs apprentice jockey rode him very well, and I will be looking out for him again in the very near future.

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