IT was the stuff of dreams to start the week with a double at Ayr - and end it with another one at Carlisle.
Saying the horses are running well at the moment is a bit of an understatement as even away from the ones who've got their head in front, we’ve had some great runs into places (and a dollop of bad luck!) so that’s given us plenty to be excited about.
After Monday’s win at Ayr my immediate thought was to head to Newcastle for the French Furze with Wild Polly, but we’re more likely to shuffle the pack now and send her to Kelso for the EBF race on December 6. All being well, that would get her qualified for the final at Newbury - which is an exciting target to have for later in the season.
That change of plan doesn’t mean we won’t be going to Newcastle, though, as the performance of Le Cheval Noir was definitely at a level where we think he’d be ideal for that race now. The manner of his win, up against a few other highly-rated ones, was hugely impressive and it’s great to have horses capable of taking you to nice races.
I couldn’t have been more pleased with Rath An Iuir in the novice chase either. He was also up against some stiff opposition, but his jumping was spectacular and really blew us away with it. Before the race we did think two-and-a-half miles would be sharp enough for him, but his class and the underfoot conditions got him through. There is a 3m chase back at Carlisle for him at the end of the month and we’ll be looking towards that.
Espoir Moriviere was our other winner, he’s such a game, tough little horse and we’d like to think there is more improvement still to come from him.
Conor O'Farrell has been on all four for us this week, he's riding superbly and deserves loads of credit for helping us bring these talented young horses through. It's a team effort and while the horses are the ones who deserve all the attention, the work that goes in back home to get them to the track is what really brings any success we have. Well done team!
We were chuffed to bits with the winners, obviously, but seeing Planet Nine finish a narrow third and Some Reign run so well until an unlucky fall at the last at Wetherby, also gives us plenty of encouragement for their seasons ahead too.
It’s a great week of racing ahead in the north, with Sedgefield, Hexham and Kelso all on our radar.
Broadstruther could go to Sedgefield for the novice hurdle, while Slanelough, Espoir and Classical Sound are all entered at Hexham and we'll decide on them later this week. Then it’s off to Kelso on Saturday, where we’ll be well represented on their seven-race card.