It isn't only the horses that can become a little uptight prior to their first run after a break, trainer can be prone to a little tetchiness as well and I went through the race a hundred times in the early hours of yesterday morning, thinking how I would like Isla Pearl Fisher ridden and how I hoped the race would pan out; it rarely goes to plan but yesterday "Surf" appeared to have read the script as I had the joy of watching the race pan out in front of my eyes exactly as I had hoped. As agreed Paddy Aspell dropped him out stone last for the first circuit then gradually crept into contention on the second before winning shaken up and going away providing a wonderful day for all connections, most particularly his owner Philippa Gammell who has had the patience and vision to give the team here the time to let the horse come to himself .
He was a picture of calmness and to my great relief the changes that I have witnessed recently held good on the day, the handicapper will now have his say and although we won't risk undoing everything by being greedy and going back too quickly I believe he can prove progressive now that everything has clicked.
All in all a fantastic start to the season, it's good to know that some of the changes we have made at least haven't done any damage and hopefully we can build on this, we didn't declare for Aintree on Sunday, ground wouldn't have been soft enough and no point getting carried away!
Pictured here are Mrs Gammell, Isla Pearl Fisher, Amy McGregor and Paddy Aspell just some of the team responsible, special mention though should go to James Barclay who has been riding the horse most of the time at home and has played a big part in helping him to relax and Lucy A who has been schooling the horse over fences. There is a big story about the breeding, upbringing and naming of this horse - suffice it to say that it was distinctly auspicious that Classic FM chose to play Bizet's duet after which he is named to Mrs G on her journey from Glen Isla to Carlisle... happy days..