MAY 2011

 

 

Tuesday 31 May 2011

One result of interest from Ffos Las today:

Victor Daly (Martin Keighley/Ian Popham) finished last in the Handicap Chase (5 ran).

 

Tomorrow, Choc has one riding engagement at Fontwell Park:

16:05 Hawk Gold (Miss MP Bryant) – Handicap Hurdle

Monday 30 May 2011

No results to report today, as Choc wasn’t in action.

 

No riding engagements for Choc tomorrow; however, Martin Keighley has one runner engaged at Ffos Las:

19:50 Victor Daly (Ian Popham) – Handicap Chase

 

I’ve spent today at home; the weather was fine this morning, but it’s been raining this afternoon.  I’ve been working on my Stratford diary, watching a video of the races and making handwritten notes in preparation for typing them up.  I also need to ‘expand’ the first draft of my Cheltenham Day 4 diary, as I’ve already watched the videos and made rough notes. 

Sunday 29 May 2011

Choc had 2 riding engagements at Uttoxeter this afternoon, and this is how he fared:

Cool Steel (Alan King) finished 4th in the Maiden Hurdle (6 ran).

Peqeno Diablo (Miss C Dyson) finished 7th in the Handicap Hurdle (8 ran).

 

There’s National Hunt racing at Cartmel and Towcester tomorrow, but no riding engagements for Choc.

 

Here is the link to the photos I took at Stratford yesterday. 

Saturday 28 May 2011

 

Photo for Blog r.jpg

 

Choc and Nikos Extra at the start prior

to the 2 miles 5½ furlongs Handicap Chase

 

 

Choc was at Stratford this evening (me too!), and this is how he fared:

Looks Like Slim (Ben De Haan) finished 5th in the Handicap Hurdle (9 ran); but there was an owner’s prize of £201 for finishing 5th.

Nikos Extra (Alan King) finished 5th in the 2 miles 5½ furlongs Handicap Chase (10 ran); again there was an owner’s prize of £246 for 5th.

Rayavadee (Paul Green) finished 13th in the Maiden Open NH Flat Race (14 ran).

 

Fortunately it was dry at Stratford but, with what seems to be an ever-present cold breeze these past few weeks, I was cold by the time the 5th race of the evening had arrived.  And that’s despite wearing a thermal vest, a long sleeved knitted tunic, a fleece, a summer scarf and a winter coat! 

 

And I missed the charity camel racing which took place before the horseracing ... as I didn’t arrive until 16:25, after which I sat in my car for a few minutes not realising I was missing something!  I’d have set off earlier than 14:15 if I’d known – so that gave me the hump (sorry!).

 

I arrived back home at 23:25 after being diverted from my original route, due to the northbound carriageway of the A41 from Junction 9 of the M40 to Bicester being closed due to road-works ... I always thought that stretch of road was part of the A34, no wonder the motorway warning sign confused me!  However, despite this, I choose the correct action and remained on the M40 ... all the way to the M25!  I didn’t think it was worth me trying to cut across country via Aylesbury or Princes Risborough or Amersham, especially after dark, although I do know the routes (in daylight) from my days as a devoted rambler! 

 

Although I love to see Choc ride ‘live’, I am prone to feeling a little disappointed when he’s not made it to the Winners’ Enclosure, either as a winner or placed horse, with any of his rides.

 

Tomorrow, Choc has 2 riding engagements at Uttoxeter:

15:40 Cool Steel (Alan King) - Maiden Hurdle

16:10 Peqeno Diablo (Miss C Dyson) – Handicap Hurdle

 

I’ve lots of bits ‘n’ pieces to do tomorrow, including uploading my Stratford photographs and making a start on the initial draft of my Stratford diary ... before I forget any of the small details.

 

Friday 27 May 2011

Choc had one riding engagement at Stratford this evening, and this is how he fared:

Am I Blue (Mrs D Thomas) was pulled up in the Handicap Hurdle (11 ran).

 

Tomorrow, Choc will be at Stratford once more, where he has 3 riding engagements:

17:50 Looks Like Slim (Ben De Haan) – Handicap Hurdle

19:20 Nikos Extra (Alan King) – Handicap Chase

21:00 Rayavadee (Paul Green) – Maiden Open NH Flat Race

 

Another Bank Holiday weekend and, typically, the weather is expected to be a little damper and cooler than recently. Not sure of my plans ... although, of course, I still have three diaries to complete. 

Thursday 26 May 2011

My Word application was having a ‘funny’ moment this evening ... I couldn’t open this blog or my almost completed 6,000 word Cheltenham Day 2 diary either ... thank goodness I can download the files from my website to recover them.  In the case of my diaries, I knew it was a good idea to save my latest drafts onto the site just for safe keeping!  Phew!

 

No results today, but Choc has one riding engagement at Stratford tomorrow evening:

19:55 Am I Blue (Mrs D Thomas) – Handicap Hurdle (and he’ll be sweating off the weight to do 10 stone 5 lbs!)

 

Having said goodbye to a number of horses at the Doncaster sales this week, Alan King has purchased a couple of chasers – Quotica de Poyans and Hold On Julio. 

 

Epsom Derby and Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe winner Workforce made a successful return to action at Sandown Park this evening.  More  I have to say that Sandown’s Parade Ring looks strange when surrounded by trees in full leaf ... when I visit the track it’s always winter with no greenery in sight! 

 

And there’s a positive report regarding injured amateur jockey Isabel Tompsett.  More

 

And, last but not least, here is a link to the aforementioned Cheltenham Day 2 diary 

Wednesday 25 May 2011

Two runners of interest at Newton Abbot this afternoon:

Benbane Head (Martin Keighley/AP McCoy) won the Beginners’ Chase on his first racecourse outing over the larger obstacles (5 ran).  Martin’s 5th winner of the season.

Won More Night (Martin Keighley/Ian Popham) finished 2nd in the Handicap Chase (6 ran).

 

And at Southwell this evening:

Jacko’s Boy (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) finished 2nd in the Handicap Chase (4 ran).

Suburban Bay (Alan King/Choc) won the Novices’ Handicap Hurdle (7 ran); Choc’s 7th winner of the season J

The Fox’s Decree (Martin Keighley/Richard Johnson) finished 4th in the same event.

 

Suburban Bay wasn’t particularly fancied for the race, a 9-1shot, because he is a very ‘fizzy’ type which has presumably prevented him from winning over hurdles before; although he did win his only appearance in a bumper back in November 2008 after which he was missing from action for 794 days!  Choc did a brilliant job with him today, as he was very much on his toes as usual.

 

No riding engagements for Choc tomorrow. 

 

The 2007 Champion Hurdler, Sublimity, ran his final race this evening before hopefully a long and happy retirement. More

 

I’m just putting the finishing touches to my Cheltenham Day 2 diary and will upload it tomorrow.

Tuesday 24 May 2011

Martin Keighley had one runner at Huntingdon this evening:

Celtic Ballad finished a head 2nd in the Conditional Jockeys’ Selling Handicap Hurdle (10 ran); he was probably a little unlucky as the winner drifted across on the run-in. 

 

Tomorrow afternoon there are runners of interest at Newton Abbot:

14:40 Benbane Head (Martin Keighley/AP McCoy) – Beginners’ Chase

15:40 Won More Night (Martin Keighley/Ian Popham) – Handicap Chase

 

And tomorrow evening at Southwell:

18:20 Jacko’s Boy (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) – Handicap Chase

20:50 Suburban Bay (Alan King/Choc J); The Fox’s Decree (Martin Keighley/Richard Johnson) – Novices’ Handicap Hurdle

 

There’s a progress report regarding injured jockey Isabel Tompsett.  More

 

News today that Mtoto has died, aged 28.  As well as winning the Eclipse twice, the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes and finishing as runner-up in the Prix De L’Arc De Triomphe he sired Presenting, who has been responsible for many top class National Hunt horses, including War of Attrition, Denman and Ballabriggs.  More

 

Day 1 of the Doncaster sale has taken place and there were a few ‘transfers’ of interest:

Enfant De Lune has gone to the David Pipe yard - £18,000

Ravethebrave is now with Lawney Hill - £23,000

Jubail has moved to Donald McCain Jnr - £35,000

Old Benny wasn’t sold on the day!

 

Nadiya De La Vega was bought by Enda Bolger for £70,000

The top lot was Alaivan, who was also purchased by Enda Bolger, for £150,000!

He also purchased Chamirey for £30,000; the horse had been with Donald McCain Jnr since leaving the Alan King yard.

Monday 23 May 2011

It’s still very quiet on the ‘Chocolate’ front, with no riding engagements for the past 3 days and none tomorrow either.

 

However, Martin Keighley is due to have one runner at Huntingdon tomorrow evening:

19:15 Celtic Ballad – Conditional Jockeys’ Selling Handicap Hurdle (Ian Popham)

 

I tuned into the ATR coverage from Fakenham yesterday and saw two horrendous falls, with the jockeys being badly hurt.  The worst was poor Isabel Tompsett who was knocked unconscious and unable to breathe, her condition today being described as serious but stable.  More  

 

The other jockey injured was Nick Scholfield, who broke a leg and also suffered damage to one of his hands.  More

 

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish both jockeys a speedy recovery.

 

It sales time again and Alan King will be sending a number of horses to Doncaster to be sold this week:

The ones I found listed are Old Benny, The Laodicean, No Tears, Enfant De Lune, Quetzel, American Ladie, Ravethebrave, Jubail, Gilded Age, Swansbrook, Asturienne and Union Island.

 

Here is a link to the full catalogue listing:

http://www.dbsauctions.com/catalogue.aspx?saleId=218&saletype=Mixed

 

I’m plodding my way through my outstanding diaries but, hopefully, Cheltenham Day 2 will be finished within the next few days!

 

Friday 20 May 2011

Choc was at Towcester this evening, but he was out of luck:

Management finished 2nd in the NH Novices’ Hurdle (5 ran).

Mister Chancer finished 3rd in the Novices’ Hurdle (6 ran); Alan King’s other declaration, Cool Steel was a non-runner.

Ali Baba finished 8th in the Intermediate Open NH Flat Race (13 ran).

 

A very quiet weekend for Choc, with no National Hunt racing tomorrow and no riding engagements at Fakenham or Kelso on Sunday.  And therefore another quiet non-racing weekend for me too.

Thursday 19 May 2011

Choc was at Wetherby this afternoon, where he had two riding engagements, both for Brian Ellison:

Dontpaytheferryman finished 4th in the Novices’ Chase (5 ran).

Film Festival finished 8th in the Handicap Hurdle (10 ran).

 

As I didn’t expect Choc to travel to North Yorkshire today, I didn’t log onto my laptop yesterday evening to check for riding engagements.  Besides, I’ve been feeling a little under the weather for the past couple of days – either I’ve caught a summer cold ... or I’ve got hay fever for the first time ever!  I gather numerous people who have never had hay fever before have got symptoms this year due to the dry weather conditions.          

 

Choc is due to ride at Towcester tomorrow evening, where he has 3 riding engagements for Alan King:

17:40 Management (Choc) – NH Novices’ Hurdle

18:40 Mister Chancer (Choc); Cool Steel (Charlie Huxley) – Novices’ Hurdle

20:40 Ali Baba (Choc) – Intermediate Open NH Flat Race

Tuesday 17 May 2011

Martin Keighley had 3 runners at Southwell this afternoon and this is how they fared:

Monty’s Revenge (Sam Thomas) fell in the Handicap Chase Div I (11 ran).

Sky Calling (Sam Thomas) won the Handicap Hurdle (2 miles) (9 ran); Martin’s 4th winner of the season.

Junior Jack (Sam Thomas) finished 7th in the Handicap Hurdle (2 miles 4½ furlongs) (10 ran).

 

As Wayne Hutchinson has been ‘missing’ for a number of weeks, I’d been presuming that his injury was more serious than reported.  Evidently he’d cracked a number of vertebrae, so it was good to read in Martin Keighley’s blog that Wayne is back riding out and hopes to return to action by the end of next week.

 

And there is another progress report regarding Peter Toole, who is continuing to recover from his Aintree fall.  More

 

There is National Hunt racing taking place at Worcester and Sedgefield tomorrow evening but no rides for Choc or runners for Martin Keighley.

Monday 16 May 2011

Today there were 2 runners of interest at Newton Abbot:

Franklino (Alan King/Choc) finished 4th in the Novices’ Hurdle (14 ran).

Celtic Ballad (Martin Keighley/Choc) was pulled up in the Handicap Hurdle (11 ran).

Sky Calling (Martin Keighley) was a non-runner in the Handicap Chase

 

With the dry weather continuing, Choc is suffering a riding engagement drought too; he has no riding engagements tomorrow. 

 

However, Martin Keighley is due to have 3 runners at Southwell tomorrow afternoon:

14:40 Monty’s Revenge (Sam Thomas) – Handicap Chase Div I

16:40 Sky Calling (Sam Thomas) – Handicap Hurdle (2 miles)

17:10 Junior Jack (Sam Thomas) – Handicap Hurdle (2 miles 4½ furlongs)

Sunday 15 May 2011

Choc was at Bangor On Dee yesterday afternoon and this is how he fared:

Dineur (Alan King/Choc) won the NH Maiden Hurdle; stable companion Night Rose (Alan King/Charlie Huxley) finished 3rd.  Choc’s 6th winner of the season.  (11 ran)

Mickytaker (Alan King/Choc) finished 3rd in the Novices’ Handicap Hurdle (6 ran)

Veteran Marked Man (Richard Lee/Choc) finished 3rd in the Handicap Chase (6 ran).

 

A couple of other interesting results from yesterday:

Yorgunnabelucky, who was tried over hurdles last season, and is currently trained by Mark Johnston, won a one mile six furlong handicap at Newmarket yesterday.  This was the horse Choc rode in the one race which took place at Newbury’s abandoned meeting in February.

And ex-Martin Keighley trained King Ozzy who, having gone to the sales is now trained by Lawney Hill, won a Handicap Hurdle at Bangor.

 

Choc’s one intended ride at Market Rasen today was a non-runner.

 

Tomorrow there are 3 runners of interest at Newton Abbot:

14:20 Franklino (Alan King/Choc) – Novices’ Hurdle

15:50 Sky Calling (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) – Handicap Chase

16:20 Celtic Ballad (Martin Keighley/Choc!) – Handicap Hurdle

 

Sorry there was no blog yesterday but, having been invited to ‘tea’ at my brother’s house, after which I attended my niece Kim’s final appearance in a Dance Show at her local village hall in Silsoe – she’s 18 now and off to University in the autumn – I didn’t arrive back home until gone 23:00.  Kim has done ballet, tap and modern dance for the past 12 years and played the role of The Sugar Plum Fairy in the Nutcracker last evening; she also took part in a tap routine and a modern dance routine in last night’s show.  At the end of the evening she received two medals, having achieved the best dance school exam results in two categories, including tap.

 

We had some rain yesterday evening but, despite it clouding over on a regular basis, we never seem to get much.  Not that I like rain, but it would definitely help the National Hunt racing programme!

Friday 13 May 2011

A number of runners of interest at Aintree this evening and this is how they fared:

Victor Daly (Martin Keighley/Richard Johnson) was pulled up; and as for Patsy Finnegan (Alan King/Choc) ‘mid-div, numerous mistakes, fell 12th’ in the Handicap Chase; Choc’s first fall of the season.  Fortunately both horse and jockey were fine following the mishap.  (10 ran)

Looks Like Slim (Ben De Haan/Choc) finished 2nd in the Novices’ Hurdle (5 ran).

Gilded Age (Alan King/Choc) finished 5th in the Handicap Hurdle (10 ran).

Frizzo (Alan King/Choc) finished 5th in the Standard Open NH Flat Race (8 ran).

 

Choc may not have had any winners on Friday the thirteenth ... but he was not as unlucky as trainer Peter Bowen – in the first race Tout Regulier fell at the last when clear; in the second race Quattrocento (the favourite) slipped up on the grandstand bend and unseated Jamie Moore; in the third race Big Time Billy (also the favourite) over-jumped and fell; and in the final race Forever My Friend was beaten by a head.  A day Peter will surely wish to forget. 

 

Choc will be at Bangor On Dee tomorrow afternoon (with no evening engagements at Uttoxeter):

14:25 Dineur (Alan King/Choc); Night Rose (Alan King/Charlie Huxley) – NH Maiden Hurdle

15:00 Mickytaker (Alan King/Choc) – Novices’ Handicap Hurdle

16:10 Marked Man (Richard Lee/Choc) – Handicap Chase

 

And I’ve completed and uploaded Part II of my Grand National Day diary.  Click here to read

Just a ‘mere’ four diaries now to complete!  Days 2, 3 and 4 of this year’s Cheltenham Festival and 10 April at Ascot.

 

With Choc due to ride at Market Rasen on Sunday, where his sole engagement is in the bumper, it means I’m going to have yet another quiet non-racing weekend at home.  L

 

Thursday 12 May 2011

Just one riding engagement for Choc today, at Ludlow:

Marleybow (Richard Lee) finished 2nd in the Handicap Chase (11 ran); Choc having jumped the last upsides the winner.

 

I saw my friend William Bonney (the horse that is) run in the Hunters’ Chase tonight – he finished 5th.

 

There was fun and games at Ludlow late in the evening, when the low sun caused all the hurdles in the home straight to be omitted.  Logic finally came into play though, as initially the hurdles were solely dolled off ... and then someone suddenly realised that the following and only other race of the day was a bumper ... so they then took the hurdles away; but the process took ages as they also had to fill in the holes where the flights had been secured and all this took place while the horses were waiting at the start!  The novices jumped 5 flights in all, instead of 11.

 

Tomorrow, there are a number of runners of interest at Aintree:

18:00 Victor Daly (Martin Keighley/Richard Johnson); Patsy Finnegan (Alan King/Choc) – Handicap Chase

18:35 Looks Like Slim (Ben De Haan/Choc) – Novices’ Hurdle

19:05 Gilded Age (Alan King/Choc) – Handicap Hurdle

20:40 Frizzo (Alan King/Choc) – Standard Open NH Flat Race

Wednesday 11 May 2011

Choc had just a single ride at Fontwell Park this afternoon, as Batonnier and Suburban Bay were non-runners.

No Tears finished 5th in the Handicap Chase (7 ran).

 

Meanwhile at Wincanton:

American Ladie (Alan King/Charlie Huxley) finished 2nd in the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (6 ran).

 

Just one riding engagement for Choc tomorrow, at Ludlow:

18:30 Marleybow (Richard Lee) – Handicap Chase

 

Good news regarding an injured jockey, Rodi Greene is making good progress from severe spinal bruising sustained at Lingfield Park on 21 March and hopes to leave hospital soon.  More

Tuesday 10 May 2011

There were a couple of runners of interest at the Hunter Chase/Amateur Riders’ evening at Sedgefield:

Ponchatrain (Martin Keighley/Mr Tom Bellamy – son of Robert) won the Amateur Riders’ Handicap Chase (6 ran).  Martin’s 3rd winner of the season, and Tom’s first winner under rules too.  Congratulations to everyone! 

The Fox’s Decree (Martin Keighley/Mr Danny Hiskett) finished 9th Amateur Riders’ Novices’ Handicap Hurdle (12 ran).

 

And Gonzo (Rodrigo Gonzales) has been retired following his disappointing run last Sunday.

 

Tomorrow Choc is due to ride at Fontwell Park, with three riding engagements for Alan King:

15:10 No Tears – Handicap Chase

15:45 Batonnier – Maiden Hurdle

16:55 Suburban Bay – Handicap Hurdle

 

Meanwhile at Wincanton where, due to the prevailing dry conditions, there will be a solely hurdles card (plus a NH Flat race):

14:20 American Ladie (Alan King/Charlie Huxley) – Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle

 

I forgot to add a blog link to my completed Aintree Grand National Day Diary Part I, which I uploaded late on Sunday.  Part II is my current project. 

Monday 09 May 2011

Both of Choc’s riding engagements at Towcester this evening where non-runners, so no results to report today.

 

15-years young Keltic Lord finished 3rd in the Jacardo Retirement Handicap Chase at the course this evening.

 

I’ve been searching for more photographs of Choc’s 1000th winner and have found these from Graftonwood 1 &

Graftonwood 2

 

The next instalment of Meally Thornton’s Eclipse diary appeared today.  She writes about her Easter trip to Scotland, and the impending birth of her niece or nephew.  And there are piccies of cute little William with his pals and another with his Auntie Sarah.  More

 

News that injured jockey Richard Hawkins is making good progress on the road to recovery.  More

 

No National Hunt racing tomorrow, apart from the Hunter Chase evening at Sedgefield; but there are a couple of runners of interest at the fixture, both trained by Martin Keighley:

18:45 Ponchatrain (Mr Tom Bellamy) – Amateur Riders’ Handicap Chase

19:45 The Fox’s Decree (Mr Danny Hiskett) – Amateur Riders’ Novices’ Handicap Hurdle

 

Sunday 08 May 2011

Today, Choc was at Uttoxeter, where he had 3 riding engagements:

Iron Chancellor (Alan King) finished 3rd in the NH Novices’ Hurdle (6 ran); a little embarrassing as he went off as 2/13 on favourite, a blunder 3 flights from home put paid to his chance.

Hightown (Don Cantillon) finished 3rd in the Novices’ Hurdle (8 ran).

Ruby Kew (Alan King) finished 5th in the Mares’ Standard Open NH Flat Race (12 ran).

 

Meanwhile at Worcester:

Shrewd Investment (Alan King/Charlie Huxley) finished 10th in the Handicap Hurdle Div I (14 ran).

The Laodicean (Alan King/Peter Hatton) finished 4th; Mauricetheathlete (Martin Keighley/Felix de Giles) finished 5th in the Handicap Hurdle Div II (12 ran).

Sky Calling (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) won the Handicap Chase, easily (8 ran); Martin’s 2nd winner of the season.

Rodrigo Gonzales (Martin Keighley/Tom Siddall) was pulled up in the Handicap Chase (9 ran); however, Martin did mention in his blog that ‘Gonzo’ was still a little overweight for his first run of the season.

 

Whilst at Plumpton:

Celtic Ballad (Martin Keighley/Jimmy Derham) was a non-runner in the Handicap Hurdle due to a bruised foot.

 

Alan King’s website has a nice write-up about Kumbeshwar’s exploits, including his outing at Punchestown yesterday.  http://www.alankingracing.co.uk/news/news1.php

 

Tim Vaughan is hoping to aim Punchestown winner Spirit of Adjisa at Royal Ascot’s Ascot Stakes.

 

And Aidan Coleman has been sidelined following a fall on Friday at Punchestown..  More

 

Tomorrow evening Choc is due to ride at Towcester, where he has two riding engagements, both for Alan King:

18:00 Lucky Mix – Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle

20:30 Frizzo – Maiden Open NH Flat Race

 

I notice that a Handicap Chase is being run in honour of recently retired ‘standing dish’ Jacarado; and 15-year-old veteran Keltic Lord is due to run in the race.

 

As my Grand National day diary seems to be taking an age to complete, I’ve decided to split it into two instalments; the first of which I hope to finish and upload this evening.

Saturday 07 May 2011

Choc was at Punchestown today, where he had one riding engagement for Alan King:

The consistent Kumbeshwar finished as runner-up in the Champion Four Year Old Hurdle (Grade 1) (7 ran); The Nicky Henderson trained, Barry Geraghty ridden, Grandouet won.

A very good day for the combination; as Bellvano won the 2 miles 2 furlongs Novices’ Chase; and Shakalakaboomboom won the 3 miles 1 furlong Handicap Chase.  

 

There were also a couple of runners of interest at Haydock Park, where there was a ‘mixed’ card:

Benbane Head (Martin Keighley/Jimmy Derham) finished 8th in the Long Distance Handicap Hurdle (17 ran).

Jubail (Alan King/Charlie Huxley) finished 13th in the Swinton Handicap Hurdle (22 ran); The race was won, for the second year running, by the Nicky Henderson trained Eradicate. So an extremely good day for the yard!

 

Tomorrow, Choc will be at Uttoxeter, where he has 3 riding engagements:

14:00 Iron Chancellor (Alan King) – NH Novices’ Hurdle

14:30 Hightown (Don Cantillon) – Novices’ Hurdle

17:00 Ruby Kew (Alan King) – Mares’ Standard Open NH Flat Race

 

Meanwhile at Worcester:

13:50 Shrewd Investment (Alan King/Charlie Huxley) – Handicap Hurdle Div I

14:20 The Laodicean (Alan King/Peter Hatton); Mauricetheathlete (Martin Keighley/Felix de Giles) – Handicap Hurdle Div II

14:50 Sky Calling (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) – Handicap Chase

16:20 Rodrigo Gonzales (Martin Keighley/Tom Siddall) – Handicap Chase

 

And at Plumpton:

15:40 Celtic Ballad (Martin Keighley/Jimmy Derham) – Handicap Hurdle

Friday 06 May 2011

Choc had 4 riding engagements at Aintree this evening, all for Alan King:

Cool Steel finished 4th in the Novices’ Hurdle (7 ran).

Norman The Great finished 3rd in the Novices’ Chase (5 ran).

Raya Star finished 2nd in the Handicap Hurdle (11 ran).

Awesome Bella finished 5th in the Mares’ Standard Open NH Flat Race (12 ran).

 

Alan King also had a runner in the Fillies Premier Bumper at Punchestown – Golden Firebird, ridden by Mr J T Carroll, finished 3rd. (25 ran).

 

Having won our 2011 Champion Hurdle, today Hurricane Fly won the Grade 1 Irish Champion Hurdle too. More

 

Spirit of Adjisa, who was trained by Alan King for a spell, and is now trained by Tim Vaughan, won the Grade 1 Champion Novice Hurdle.  More

 

Wishfull Thinking won the Novices’ Handicap Chase and Newbury survivor Kid Cassidy won the Novices’ Hurdle.

 

Tomorrow, Choc will be at Punchestown, where he has one riding engagement for Alan King:

16:25 Kumbeshwar – Champion Four Year Old Hurdle (Grade 1)

 

There are also a couple of runners of interest at Haydock Park, where there is a ‘mixed’ card:

15:05 Benbane Head (Martin Keighley/Jimmy Derham) – Long Distance Handicap Hurdle

15:40 Jubail – (Alan King/Charlie Huxley) – Swinton Handicap Hurdle

 

Another quiet weekend at home for me, as Choc will be at Uttoxeter on Sunday. 

Thursday 05 May 2011

Here are today’s results:

 

Newton Abbot:

Won More Night (Martin Keighley/Ian Popham) won the Handicap Chase (2 miles ½ a furlong); Martin’s 1st winner of the season.  Many congratulations to the team. (6 ran).

Balerina (Alan King/Choc) clobbered a hurdle and almost unseated Choc in the Handicap Hurdle (2 miles 3 furlongs) – they finished tailed off in 11th (12 ran). 

Brimham Boy (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) finished 3rd in the Handicap Chase (2 miles 5½ furlongs) (9 ran).

Monty’s Revenge (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) finished 7th in the Handicap Hurdle (2 miles 6 furlongs) (13 ran).

 

Wincanton:

Looks Like Slim (Ben De Haan/Choc) won the Novices’ Hurdle at a price of 1-10! (4 ran); Choc’s 5th winner of the season.  J

 

Lidar had an outing on the flat at Goodwood today, finishing 4th of 10; although he would probably have been 5th had Camporosso not been injured just over a furlong from home.

 

Captain Chris won the Grade 1 Novices’ Chase at Punchestown today. More

 

Top class mare, Quevega, won the World Hurdle. More

 

Following yesterday’s disappointment, Paul Nicholls is keen to point out that no decision will be made until the autumn regarding Kauto Star’s future. More

 

It has been very damp at Wetherby this evening, so someone is getting the rain, even if it’s only North Yorkshire!  And there was drizzle at Chester too, late in the afternoon.

 

Tomorrow Choc has 4 riding engagements at Aintree, all for Alan King:

17:15 Cool Steel – Novices’ Hurdle

17:45 Norman The Great – Novices’ Chase

20:00 Raya Star  – Handicap Hurdle

20:35 Awesome Bella – Mares’ Standard Open NH Flat Race

 

Alan King also has a runner in the Fillies Premier Bumper at Punchestown tomorrow – Golden Firebird – ridden by Mr J T Carroll (in Ireland, bumpers are for amateur riders only).

Wednesday 04 May 2011

Hopefully Choc will have two riding engagements tomorrow, one at Newton Abbot, the other at Wincanton:

 

Newton Abbot:

14:30 Won More Night (Martin Keighley/Ian Popham) - Handicap Chase (2 miles ½ a furlong)

15:05 Balerina (Alan King/Choc) – Handicap Hurdle (2 miles 3 furlongs)

15:35 Brimham Boy (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) – Handicap Chase (2 miles 5½ furlongs)

16:40 Monty’s Revenge (Martin Keighley/Sam Thomas) – Handicap Hurdle (2 miles 6 furlongs)

 

Wincanton:

19:20 Looks Like Slim (Ben De Haan/Choc) – Novices’ Hurdle

 

Alan King intends to send two runners to the Punchestown Festival which is taking place this week; one being my current favourite horse - Kumbeshwar.  More  Although I’m still hoping that Walkon will vie for my ‘affections’ when he returns as a Novice chaser in the autumn. 

 

Kauto Star was pulled up in today’s Guinness Gold Cup at Punchestown having not shown any ‘spark’.  Does retirement beckon?  We’ll have to wait and see.  He’s been a grand servant and doesn’t owe anything to anyone.  More  

 

The Donald McCain Jnr trained Overturn won today’s Chester Cup; ridden by Lambourn Open Day Puissance winner Eddie Ahern!  More

 

Also news today that injured jockey Peter Toole has made sufficient progress to enable him to be moved to a hospital in Dublin.  More

 

Willie Twiston-Davies was at Cheltenham this evening, attending the Hunter Chase event.  He hopes to return to the saddle in July.

 

Jockey Dave Crosse has updated his ‘Love the Races’ blog with the results from last Saturday’s Da Jesters (Comedy Lesters) awards.  More

Tuesday 03 May 2011

The Punchestown Festival got underway today:

Big Zeb got the better of his Cheltenham conqueror Sizing Europe  More

And another victory for Aintree winner, Quito De La Roque  More

 

Kauto Star is due to take part in the Guinness Gold Cup tomorrow  More

 

Jockey, soon to be trainer, Kieran Burke has been in the wars, suffering an accident at home  More

 

Just Sedgefield and Kelso National Hunt fixtures tomorrow (plus Hunter Chase evening at Cheltenham); so Choc has no riding engagements.

 

The 2011/2012 Jockeys Championship league table has been compiled ... Choc is currently in 4th position ... and no guesses as to who is already in the lead!  More

Monday 02 May 2011

With no change to the unseasonably dry and warm weather conditions, Choc has no riding engagements tomorrow; National Hunt racing taking place at Exeter and Fakenham.  The 5-day Punchestown Festival starts tomorrow.

 

Da Jesters (the comedy Lesters) took place in Lambourn on Saturday night, and Choc was nominated for the Ride Of Da Year – the very embarrassing one where he was unseated from Invictus at Leicester in January.  He’s referred to as Choc (I look like ET) Thornton ... and if last autumn you saw the film of Choc on an exercise bike in the gym at Oaksey House, you’ll know why!  Shamefully, that’s exactly what I thought at the time too!!!  But he’s still the most gorgeous jockey ever and I adore him in all his guises!  More

 

Hopefully jockey and organiser Dave Crosse will provide a write-up of the event, once he’s recovered from that and from Warren Marston’s ‘retirement do’ too, which took place at the Plough Inn in Ford last evening!

 

This weekend I seem to have spent hours watching video tapes of races ... but have only completed two diaries ... so 2 down ... 5 to go:

 

Grand National Festival 2011 – Ladies Day

 

Lambourn Open Day

 

Back to work tomorrow ... L

 


 

 

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