I could write a book about a horse it would be about the giant Seeking Power (pictured) but I hope not too many chapters will read like yesterday. It's just as well I'm not a betting man because if I was I would have got seriously stuck into Seeking Power at the Cumberland Farmers yesterday. Sent off the 5-2 joint favourite of 16 runners he had everything in his favour, everything finally appeared to have fallen into place, however not in my wildest dreams (nightmares?) could I have imagined what unfolded. He was a little bit keen running into the first fence, put in a very big jump and pitched on landing, his head hit the ground and in the process he managed to pull his bridle off, pragmatically Lucy would have been better to have fallen off however she sat tight, they lost little momentum and as they galloped towards the 2nd fence Lucy found herself still holding the reins but with the bridle flapping between the horses knees; unrestrained he accelerated past the rest of the field and the aghast crowd, he ran off the course and headed at full speed towards a wood, only stopping at the very last minute to hurl Lucy at full velocity into the barbed wire fence, leaving her strung up upside-down like a rag-doll in the rows of barb, he cantered off into the distance. Fortunately this happened close to the crowd and more importantly the paramedics who were on-hand very quickly, after an interminable few minutes they managed to extract her from the fence and miraculously she walked into the ambulance. Apart from torn colours and shredded breeches she got away with about 20 cuts and punctures to
her legs none of which are serious (some pictured - with apologies!). It was a truly heart-stopping 30 seconds though, really lucky that no serious injury resulted and if Mr & Mrs A decide to give up racing horses it won't be because we don't like getting up in the morning!
Luckily the day had started on a much better note when Contendo (below) finished a good 2nd in the Intermediate race to a highly regarded horse from Yorkshire, he had several multiple winners behind him so showed that his maiden win was no fluke.
We were all set to head off again today when I noticed that our intended runner Amulree had some gunge coming out of her nose so I had no option other than to withdraw her, most frustrating but better to have found out now than after the race; hopefully I will be able to sort her out and she can go to Kelso on Friday 20th. All being well we will head South tomorrow for a 48 hour busman's holiday at the Cheltenham Festival; the Irish can't see Cousin Vinny being beaten in the opener on Tuesday, they are probably right but the odds will be skinny and I prefer 25-1 each way about Copper Bleu. In the Champion Hurdle there will be another hot favourite but one could do worse than another good priced outsider in the mare, Whiteoak. On Wednesday Diamond Harry looks very decent whilst later in the week last year's Gold Cup winner Denman looks outstanding value at 6-1. If a horse called Madison du Berlais hadn't turned up at Kempton last month Denman would be odds on favourite.... We have a new arrival here in the form of this smart colt foal by top class Derby winner Generous, our 8th foal out of Harrietfield..... hope springs eternal..... We have entries at Sedgefield on Tuesday, Hexham on Thursday and the Duke of Buccleuch's point-to-point on Saturday - I think I'll recover from yesterday though prior to firming up plans.