Monday, 15 February 2016


Back in the saddle at last and rode up the back of the hill on Wednesday, on Some Kinda Lama, who worked really nicely.  I enjoyed that.

William came to stay on Wednesday night - we went to The Malt Shovel and had a very nice supper. They have a very good chef there called June and William loves his beef burger and chips, which is always a big treat for him.

We schooled six on the all weather on Thursday as temperatures got down to -5 and the grass was frozen. We had Harry Bannister, Gavin Sheehan and David Crosse in to school. Julie Duffy very kindly took William to school and then watched her horse, Expedite, on the gallops on second lot. 

I had a fella come in who gave me a good deal on tarmacking and graveling the drive, which looks a lot smarter. In the afternoon I met William Selby Lowndes, who is doing some work for me as a Solicitor. We ran Dukes Den at Huntingdon and he ran terribly - I don't think he is in love with the job, so he is going to go to the sales at the end of the month. I will find something else for his syndicate owners, The Neardowners. He was disappointing after what looked like two promising hurdle runs for us earlier this season. Gary Bradley arrived as he is going to paint the inside of my house, and will be here for a while. We went to see Dilly Keane at The Corn Exchange in Newbury - she was very funny and very entertaining!

We started pulling out at 7am on Friday morning - there is enough daylight now to do it. We had Denis O'Regan in to ride out, as well as Emily Jones. We ran Cody Wyoming at Wetherby - he finished third of four, but I had him scoped after the race and we found that he had bled, and also had mucous in his lungs, so the horse is clearly not right, which is good news as he will obviously improve once we have it cleared up.

They had an Asian Night at The Malt Shovel on Friday night and the food was absolutely delicious.

We had five red letter days on Saturday morning and Evelyn Faber very kindly helped take them up to the gallops as we needed two cars. Some Kinda Lama worked nicely with Morney Wing. Baltic Storm did his first bit of work and went nicely. Expedite did a nice bit too. We managed to get the red letter day guests badges for Newbury, so they were all very happy. Tony Stapleton then came over to see his horses and we went to The Malt for lunch and watched all of the racing from Newbury and Warwick. It was disappointing to have no runners as in the past we have won both The Game Spirit and The Kingmaker and because of the ground, we didn't even have a runner.

We had a very good evening in The Malt again for Valentines night and I had a very nice lobster.

I had a big lunch on Sunday - the guests included Simon Beccle and Marie Ellis, Kim Brassey, Dominic and Avery Ffrench Davies, Evelyn Faber, Barney Windsor Clive, my sister Caroline and Susannah and my two children. We had a very good lunch, which lasted quite a long time. I did quite well because I invited three cooks who helped me out with the cooking!!

Today we have Bridal Suite running at Plumpton. He is having his first run over fences and I don't hold out much hope for him; he has the ability to win if he wants to, but I'm not sure he does!

We have entries at Sandown and Fakenham on Friday. We may run Morney Wing in the Royal Artillery Gold Cup. He will be ridden by Capt Max Chenery.

My sister Caroline is staying for a few days, and my other sister Victoria is also coming tomorrow, which will be good fun!

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