We had plenty of runners last week but unfortunately, due to a few factors, there weren't any winners.
The closest we got to the winner's enclosure was No Such Number at Winsdor on Monday. It rained heavily all day so the ground was soft by the time racing started. He had never tried this sort of ground before but he seemed to relish it and ran a great race in third. It gives us plenty more options for the future.
Thursday at Yarmouth was extremely busy with two runners and the official launch of the new Hoofbeats Racing Club. The horses ran with credit and there was lots of interest in the club. It's a really affordable way to get involved in not just one but four horses for just £180 a year. More details can be found at the site: http://www.hoofbeats.co.uk/hoofbeats-racing-club.htm
We only have one runner this week as Lea Valley heads to Nottingham tonight. She fractured her leg after finishing second in the winter but everything is healed fine now and she is a lot stronger for the break. She is quite a stuffy horse so may need the run but she is certainly better than her low rating.
After a joint decision was made between myself and owner Alan Dee, we have decided to retire our stable star Spirit of Sharjah. It is always hard to let go of your best horse but he seems to be on the decline and it is best for him to retire in one piece rather than going down the scale of races.
After winning first time out as a two year old at Newmarket under Mick Kinane, he won me my first ever Listed race at Goodwood. He then improved furthermore to finish an unlucky third in the Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot - a real thrill and one of the highlights of my career.
Although he never matched this later in life, he still won two more listed races, finished placed in Dubai and won over £130,000 in career prize money.
It is good to know he will have a nice new home though for his second career as he has gone to Richard Perham who used to ride him out every morning and will do some hunting and show jumping with him. He is only in the next village so it will be good to see him from time to time.
Hopefully we won't have to wait too long until we get another as good as him!
|Spirit of Sharjah winning on debut at Newmarket|
|Spirit of Sharjah exercising at Meydan racecourse, Dubai|