Mrs A seemed very pleased to make off with her loot after her horse Foodbroker Founder won the Ladies Open under daughter Lucy at the Fife point-to-point on Saturday. It has taken us a little bit of time to work out this quirky little horse and he came from well off the pace to win cleverly; having lain for dead at the last fence in the same race last year it was a huge relief that he finally came good and particularly pleasing that he did so at our local track. This horse that was engaged in the 2003 Derby has a little bit of history, trained by David Elsworth he won on the flat, was beaten a short head at Royal Ascot, became Desert Orchid's travelling companion and soul-mate, won a couple over hurdles and the last jockey to sit on him prior to Lucy was AP McCoy.... hopefully he can progress from here on the pointing circuit but we also fancy giving him a couple of spins on the flat through the summer.
Earlier in the afternoon Almost Blue was a comfortable winner in the Members Race, brother Jamie recording his 7th (a record surely?) win in the race in a match against his niece Lucy riding for the Normile stable.
It was a good afternoon's racing in glorious sunshine and much needed having withdrawn our horses at Perth due to the ground being a little bit quick. We did manage to give a couple of promising youngsters a racecourse gallop on Friday evening but the ground frustrations continue this week with Amulree and Fearless Footsteps having to bypass their intended engagements at Kelso this evening. I am sure it will rain sometime but probably not until I have finally thrown in the towel and turned the horses out for a summer break.
Last Saturday represented the formal end of the 2008/9 National Hunt Season. Reflecting on our stats I see that we had 4 winners & 6 seconds from 51 runners. All the winners came in the pointing field and thank goodness for that as we had very little luck on the track with several horses going wrong and some of them not being quite right in the middle of the winter. Whilst it is undeniably easier to win in point-to-points with an ordinary sort of horse, it is still very competitive and you have to be fit, healthy and lucky. The problem on the track is that until you get into handicaps you are generally competing against some very expensive horses and, with us, our handicappers either went wrong or just weren't up for it.
The great thing about racing is one is always looking forward and we have some very nice young horses to look forward to next season and a few old favourites coming back from injury so we will hopefully make a bit more of an impact on the track this time round.
I say "next" season but it has of course already started and we intend to be in action on Sunday at the Lauderdale point-to-point, as mentioned we have bypassed Kelso today but we have other options at Hexham on Saturday evening and Witton Castle (wherever that is) on Bank Holiday Monday - it would be highly satisfactory if we could start off where we finished, with winners!