Entries & Recent Form

I thought that Laustra Bad ran another sound race at Taunton yesterday afternoon when finishing second to Fountains Flypast in the 2m3 1/2f handicap hurdle.  It seems to me that our eight year old is running some good races without getting his head in front and I dare say that the handicapper will make life more difficult still by putting him up by another pound or two.  While he is undeniably reasonably treated compared to when he last won, it should be remembered that he has never won a handicap and come next month it will be four years since he was last successful - it is about time the handicapper gave him more of a chance rather than sticking him back up the weights again for not winning!

Spirit Of Barbados also ran his best race to date when finishing fourth in the novices' hurdle.  He stayed on nicely and looks as though a step up in trip will suit him in the future.

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It was the unveiling of the weights for the Cheltenham handicaps yesterday and David was present at the Prestbury course to see what his entries have been burdened with.  To be honest, I am not quite sure why they hold such an event - it is not like the Grand National where the handicapper can use his discretion to manipulate the weights, the weights are decided by the horses official ratings.  Anyway, Mike Vince was on hand to conduct an interview with David, so to hear his reaction to the weights and his Festival plans, click here...

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I thought that both of the Pond House runners performed with credit yesterday at Ffos Las.  I have to say that Horsford looked all over the winner entering the straight in the 2m5f handicap chase, but unfortunately a mistake three out stopped him in his tracks and Tom Scudamore did well to keep the partnership intact.  In the end he was allowed to complete in his own time for second behind Patman du Charmil, but it could have been very different without that error...still, jumping is the name of the game and I am sure that Horsford will be winning races in the future judged on this performance.

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We had an entertaining evening at Pond House last night.  MCP invited 1991 World Snooker Champion John Parrott down to the yard along with former rugby star turned pundit Stuart Barnes as well as a few owners.  We even had the snooker table re-clothed for the event - as for me, all I had was a new bit of string for the net!  John played with most of the guests while Martin wore a wastecoat that looked like it had been cut from Joseph's techinicolour dreamcoat!

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Battle_Group_Newcastle

It was a good day for the yard up at Newcastle on Saturday with Battle Group winning by a short head.  Our six year old certainly has plenty of ability, although he can on occasions appear to be a tricky customer (as I am sure anybody who was at Exeter last time will testify).  It was a good performance to give 4lbs and a beating to odds-on favourite Yurok in bottomless ground.  The Tracey Shuffle also produced a good performance to win his second bumper in fine style under a penalty.  It normally takes a pretty decent type to win two bumpers, and this full brother to Mr Thriller and half brother to Gaspara looks to be a nice type for owners Sean & Jo Tracey to go hurdling with.

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We are expecting a visit from former snooker world champion John Parrott tomorrow, so I dare say that the snooker cues will have been dusted off and at the ready for Monday night!  I would have thought I would still be favourite to beat John at ping pong, although MCP is quite handy too so we may have a little bit of Pipe v Parrott.  It should be a good night and I will let you know the results on Tuesday morning - if I have sobered up in time!...

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Did I walk under a ladder yesterday?  If you had been watching the racing yesterday, you would have thought that I had!  Qalinas looked all over the winner turning into the straight in the conditional jockey's handicap hurdle and from nowhere Kadouchski suddenly bounced back to life and stayed on up the Sandown hill to get the better of us close home.  Then, later in the afternoon Dan Breen won the three runner novices' chase by a short head from Giorgio Quercus, but he carried the runner-up right after the last and the steward's reversed the order following an enquiry.  It pains me to say it, but it was the correct decision and Tom Scudamore received a three day ban (11-13th March).

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