We were back on the grass this morning which was refreshing for everyone including the horses who were all bucking and squealing as if they could smell spring round the corner, it was remarkable that all partnerships remained in tact, although the ground is soft the way we manage the grass gallops means that it hadn’t been used since last March so it is pretty decent. Certainly in comparison to most of the racecourses (see below!). It certainly didn’t appear in any way spring like driving through the snow to Carlisle (Monday) and Amulree didn’t appreciate the heavy ground, she jumped round in workmanlike fashion and it was a satisfactory enough introduction to chasing. Signs of spring were also distinctly absent at the Percy point-to-point on Sunday where it was bitterly cold and the ground was, err, muddy? – this is the finishing post..



I’m always as keen as anyone to race and I am a tremendous admirer of all the hard work that has gone in to producing a really good track at Alnwick but I’m not sure they did themselves (or the course!) any favours by racing in these conditons, where do you draw the line?  At least we had made the sensible decision to leave ours at home.  Lucy had two rides, a third in the Ladies Open and a fall in the Restricted.  I received this photograph from her at 7.30am on Sunday morning (we were still making our way back from the Alps)


it is the “view from the horse” as she took Amulree out for an early morning exercise prior to departing for Alnwick, she had started feeding the 32 horses here at 5.45am. This had been her routine whilst we had been away relaxing on the ski slopes, as well as organising the daily exercise book (via a couple of calls each day with me), riding out and doing the morning feeds she had also been riding at Ayr, Lanark and Catterick – all to yield two pulled ups (for me!), two also-rans, two falls and a third.  A tough life and completely typical of the 24-7 dedication that applies to so many people in racing, she hasn’t had a great time recently but  quite a few different people are giving her rides now, a good agent has taken her on and there is a chance of an attractive sponsorship deal in the pipeline; I am sure her luck will change shortly.

And now its Tuesday and I still haven’t posted my blog!  Another very productive day with Noir et Vert and Twelve Paces schooling nicely over fences;  Northern Flame, “Alf,” Isla Patriot, Minimo and Playing Footsie all working well on the grass, and Commercial Express, Buffalo Ballet and Little Glenshee having a good blowout on Lucinda’s woodchip

Buffalo Ballet (Lucy) and Little Glenshee (Amy)

Buffalo Ballet (Lucy) and Little Glenshee (Amy)

We hope to be very busy this week at Ayr on Thursday, exactly what runs will depend on the weather, we have 8 horses entered, will keep anyone interested posted via this blog…