I was hoping we would get off the mark for the year last week with a good few chances lined up but unfortunately luck wasn't shining on us and they failed to come home in front.
Veeraya looked to be the best chance and although he ran a fine race in fourth, jockey Adam Beschizza said he feels better with a low weight against better horses so we will up him in class. Not a bad problem to have!
With only two runners this week, opportunities for success look limited but I hope Vastly can run well at Southwell on Tuesday. He has been off a few months after develop an abscess on his back. It took a while to clear but he is all fine now and I think it was probably affecting him in his last few runs so they can be written off. He is a big, stuffy horse but we have got him very fit. As always, the surface at Southwell is an unknown as he has never run there before but he is American-bred and they tend to do well at the course. Despite it being an older horse maiden, the field looks quite competitive and we will have to beat an 80-rated Mark Johnston runner. Surprises can happen though and you can always be assured that ours run to their capabilities every time they head to the races.
Our other runner looks likely to be Amelia George on Saturday. She was very weak as a youngster and has been given time to mature, hence why she is making her debut at the age of four. She is quite immature mentally so the run will be a good experience for her and I expect her to improve for the run.