NH Fixtures & Sales Dates

Mon May 01
Kempton, Warwick
Thu May 04
Sedgefield, Towcester
Fri May 05
Cheltenham, Fontwell

Entries & Recent Form

We head into the summer break with the stable lying in third place in the trainers’ standings with thirteen successes and over £130,000 in winning prize money. When racing resumes the fixture list starts to step up a gear but until then we are faced with nine days without National Hunt racing…what on earth am I going to do?!

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With runners at just Worcester and Uttoxeter, it was yet another one of those disjointed weeks last week where there was precious little jump racing to focus on. The week ahead seems to offer a more balanced programme with National Hunt racing taking place from today through Friday despite the excellent ‘Glorious Goodwood’ meeting going ahead on the level. Even so, come Saturday there are six fixtures and not a single jumps card among them, why on earth not?!

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Despite there being very little in the way of National Hunt racing, there has been no shortage of newsworthy events over the past seven days, not least the surprise decision by champion flat jockey Richard Hughes to bring forward his impending retirement to after the meeting at Glorious Goodwood next week. As a fan of our great sport it is a shame that we lose the champion jockeys’ from both codes (flat and jumps) within a few months of each other.

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     Kings Palace & Broadway Buffalo
          Enjoying their Holiday
It was a quiet week on the racing front last week and I enjoyed a few days in Portugal with the family. It was nice to recharge the batteries as it's now back to work the horses starting to come back in from their summer holidays. I am not sure quite where the time goes as it only seems like 5 minutes ago we were turning them out!! They have all done well though, have put on a nice amount of weight and we have a good starting point to begin training. Now starts a few weeks walking and trotting before we get them back on the gallops again.  It is great to have a mixture of all the old favourites plus a few new faces to look forward to as well.  Of course we are continually looking to add to the team through the sales and monitoring what becomes available in the private market. If you are interested in joining Pond House as an owner in any capacity we would be delighted to hear from you.

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It is that time of the year again when the jumping program becomes increasingly fragmented. With four days between jumps fixtures from Wednesday of this week and another four days without National Hunt racing next (not to mention a full week in August) it is all very stop-start. I have mentioned it before and I am sure I will mention it again - for the life of me I still can’t see why these blank days are not grouped together in order to give the horses, jockeys and staff alike a little bit of a break.

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Although looking like a quiet week on the domestic runners front, there is still plenty to keep us busy over the coming weeks. One or two of the horses have already had their summer breaks and are now back in while others will be going out very shortly and while all this is going on, it is an ideal time for some yard husbandry, making sure that everything around the yard is good working order, tidy and above all clean.

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What a great week last week with Royal Ascot taking centre stage. Pair that with a couple of winners for the stable over the sticks and several other notable performances and all in all, it must be considered a productive one. With another French foray on the cards over the coming few days, the ‘quiet’ summer jumping season has been anything but…not that I am complaining however as anyone knows me will testify, I would much rather keep myself busy.

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Following on from our spectacular success in France the previous weekend, it was down to earth somewhat with a handful of runners on the domestic front. We seemed to have a touch of thirditis (which I guess is even worse than that terrible plague, seconditis!) whereby five of our eight runners filled the third spot in the winners’ enclosure. Nonetheless a good victory from grand old campaigner Street Entertainer at Worcester punctuated this somewhat frustrating run and kept us at the top of the trainers’ standings for another week, albeit at this early stage.

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What a week for racing with a great winner of the Derby, a Triple Crown winner in the States and from a personal point of view, a fantastic success for the stable in France! Although it was a quiet week on the domestic front with only a handful of runners, it was nonetheless an important one for the Pond House team with two live chances in the Grade One Grande Course de Haies d’Auteuil in France on Sunday and while I was confident of a big run from both of our runners, to actually land the big race in such a facile manner with Un Temps Pour Tout (pictured above) was more than I could have ever hoped for.

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I have just returned from a very enjoyable trip away in France with my partner Leanne and the kids along with my parents, Chester, Jane, Simon, Susie, George and Angie. We spent our time in Ile de Re, a small island off the west coast of France near La Rochelle – it really was idyllic. With a trip to Auteuil only a fortnight ago (for the Prix la Barka) and another on the cards this coming weekend for the French Champion Hurdle, not to mention the Arqana sales at the beginning of July, I will have spent almost as much time in France as I have done at home!

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