Heading to Taunton on Thursday we were slightly worried about the good to firm going for Green Du Ciel and Follow The Tracks, but knew it would be perfect for Madam Be.....how we could be so wrong!
Once again the heavens opened, just to make a change! Green Du Ciel was up first at Taunton, Daryl Jacob on board, he was sent off second favourite and jumped like a stag, much better than on the softer ground he had been running on, although after a circuit he had turned a funny brown colour, turning into the straight Daryl was full of running and hit the front with ease, after another two smashing jumps unfortunately he just got outstayed in the last 50 yards by the short priced favourite. Once again the old boy has been placed, making that 5 places this season from just 9 runs! He is an old legend and deserves to get his head in front soon. He came back in great form and has speant the last 3 days in the field with Spike.....
Follow The Tracks 'Spike' and Madam Be were next in the same race, but after Daryls description of the going we decided to pull Madam Be out as she really needs quicker ground. So Spike had a jockey change, Will Featherstone, who has been doing a lot of riding out here recently was due to ride Madam Be, as she was not going to run we put him up on Spike, he had already finished 2nd on him at Southwell so he knew him well enough. Heading out onto the course everyone was very confident, and of course he was never headed, after a fine front running ride from Will he defied top weight and a massive 15lb hike in the weights to win convincingly! He really is a bit of a dude, after over a year off with leg trouble, he has only been out of the places once this season, as well as winning back to back, and that was his first run when he was going to come on for it anyway! Not bad I would say. He has come out his race fresh and well, we will not know where he goes next untill we hear from the handicapper, hopefully he has had a nice Easter break and isnt feeling too mean! He is still improving and will make a smashing chaser too.
We had a new runner at Wincanton on Wednesday, Shanandoa, she was the only filly in the field and all the top yards were represented. There was a terrible head wind that day and we wanted some cover for her but unfortunately that didnt work out and she was stuck 4 wide most of the way, but turning into the straight she joined the leader (the eventual winner) and showed a smart turn of foot before drifting slightly accross the track. She was only beaten 6 lengths into 5th by some smart sorts and I am sure if she was kept straight she would have finished an awful lot closer, none the less she ran a cracker to only be beaten that far. She would have learnt a lot and will improve for that, we cant wait to run her next time. Funnily enough The Giant Bolster, her big brother also finished 5th in his first bumper....make of that what you want, but we are very excited.
In other news, Martys Magic looks great and is cantering away nicely, Tuffstuff is also not far off another run, we hope to find him a little soft ground somewhere. Norfolk Sky is coming along nicely. Ballyheigue, Under Review, Robero, Green Du Ciel, Shanandoa and Madam Be all run in the next 10 days.
Will and young Eddy Greatrex have been in this week riding work which was good to see.
We have the Grand National on Saturday, one of the most spectacular events in the racing calender year, so we wish everyone the very best of luck and hope all horses and jockeys come back safe!
Many thanks for reading and I hope you are all having a good easter break!