Winker Watson | Trainer: PETER CHAPPLE-HYAM

'Winker Watson' Category

Long time no blog.¬† I’ve been out and about¬†for a while now with no blogging time, so a fair bit to catch up on.
Last Thursday I went up to Cambridge with Steve Morana, Betfair CFO.  We spent the afternoon in the offices of a small company called Featurespace - they are data analysts specialising in [...]

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My house is a building site at the moment - they’re working in half of it and we’re living in the other half.¬† The whole place is covered in brick dust - it seems that no matter what we do to keep the dust out it finds a way through.
The highlight of the week occurred [...]

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I’ll be¬†brief again today as I’m on cooking duty - I cook a mean Shepherd’s Pie.
Jane got me a couple of framed photos for Christmas - Bouguereau in the Derby and Winker in the July Stakes.¬† They were fantastic professionally taken¬†photos that I’d never seen before - I’ll post them in here¬†when I get¬†time.¬† I [...]

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I’m back at my desk having flown in to a freezing cold Heathrow at 5:30 this morning wearing shorts and a T-shirt.¬† I hardly slept a wink and I’m fading fast - as soon as I’ve done the blog I’m off to bed.
I couldn’t have been more impressed with Melbourne - it’s got everything.¬† It’s [...]

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A quite incredible day in the financial markets today.  Massive gains around the world were topped off with an almost unbelievable rise of 936 points on the Dow Jones - a move nearly twice as big as the previous all time high move of 499.
It’s the sort of fillip the financial world needed to get moving [...]

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More disappointment on Saturday with Winker running no sort of race.  In many respects it was a run that was too bad to be true - he was being niggled to go the pace almost from the start and we knew our fate before the half way point.  I think the will is still there [...]

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Jane and I went to Ascot yesterday as guests of Watership Down Stud.  I have yearling filly with them that I really like - Sadlers Wells out of Race the Wild Wind and a half sister to King Charlemagne and Meshaheer.  The room was full of all types of racing people with a few theatre people [...]

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So the Ballydoyle three finally paid the price for their crimes and that should be the end of the matter, for now at least.  The reality though is that this was a total open and shut case - the rules are worded clearly and Johnny Murtagh had admitted the breach in the papers.  The BHA had [...]

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A good day on Sunday with King’s Head doing it nicely.¬† He needs it G/F or firm and given that he has¬†invariably delivered¬†when he has had his ground I probably should have given him a stronger write up.¬† He may come out again on the weekend - he has entries on Saturday at Market Rasen [...]

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Ugh.  My hopes and dreams from Friday lie crushed and broken.
Marine Boy’s run was too bad to be true.¬† He’s a lot better than that - in a sense I’d have been more concerned if he’d been beaten a couple of lengths.¬† He scoped clean after the race and he trotted up fine - we [...]

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I travelled up to Newmarket late on Monday night with Mick and we checked into a hotel.  In the morning I went down to watch work with Pete.
Winker was out first lot.  He worked extremely well without seeming to extend himself - Pete thought it was there or thereabouts his nicest piece of work this [...]

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Skid Solo comes out today¬†trying to break his duck in¬†the first at Wolver.¬† We thought a lot of him at the start of the season but he’s been disappointing thus far.¬† To be fair most of Pete’s 2yos that have come out¬†have been disappointing this year, but he had a nice winner yesterday and maybe [...]

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The weather is currently scuppering my racing plans. 
We made the decision this morning not to supplement Winker at Deauville - the ground there is on the soft side and there is heavy rain forecast on Sunday.¬† These forecasts are extremely unreliable and it’s perfectly possible that Sunday could turn out to be a glorious summer’s [...]

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A quick one from me from the hotel computer.
It’s not easy checking out the racing from here as all betting related sites are blocked by the Italian regulator.¬† I can access the Racing Post site at least, where I can check out Bouguereau’s oppo.
Only six runners but no easy task on.  Boug is extremely well, [...]

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Bert‚ā¨‚ĄĘs Bouguereau, in Tuesday‚ā¨‚ĄĘs Betfair sponsored Gordon Stakes, and the Comic Strip Heroes‚ā¨‚ĄĘ Winker Watson, in Wednesday‚ā¨‚ĄĘs Sussex Stakes, are declared runners at Goodwood this week. They face just five and six rivals respectively and hopes are high for a bold show from both.
I have a slight concern about the ground being too fast [...]

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Up and down betting at the moment.¬† Good bets on Addikt and Whispering Angel came in but I took a heavy loss on Royal Destination last night.¬† I missed an opportunity when Papradon, who had nearly reeled in Lilac Moon last time, won the first at Newmarket at a big price.¬† It’s a nice boost [...]

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Strike two

An unbelievable day yesterday when Tom won the second 2yo group 2 with another incredibly cheap buy.  Firth of Fifth cost 5,000 Guineas - Classic Blade 19,000 Euros.  It is an incredible training feat, and great credit also to Richard Kingscote who rode so intelligently. 
I didn’t go yesterday - it seemed like a good time [...]

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A big day and I made arrangements to go to Newmarket - I decided to book a driver for the day.  I had a few errands to run in the morning and I headed off a bit late.  I slept most of the way there - when I have a driver I usually stay up late the [...]

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More hideous weather today - I’m told that we’re getting a month’s worth of rain today here in leafy Surrey.¬† I can believe it - it’s cats and dogs out there.
It wasn’t raining at Newmarket overnight and early morning, but the rain started an hour ago and it’s chucking it down now (11:40).¬† Rain is [...]

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I had a good day at Wimbledon with Jane and our two daughters.  In truth the girls were a bit too young to appreciate it and they got bored towards the end.  When Andy Murray went two sets down we decided to call it a day and head home.  Oh well.
I spent most of the morning [...]

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Unfortunately Winker now passes¬†Royal Ascot - the next opportunity may be the¬†Prix Jean Prat at Chantilly next month.¬† He worked on Wednesday with Al Qasi - he tired at the end of the gallop and blew the house down afterwards.¬† It’s frustrating as he’s not far off full fitness, but he wasn’t quite going to [...]

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Winker waits

We left Winker out of the Irish 2,000 today - he’s back in work but short of full fitness and it’s too soon for him.¬† He’ll probably go straight to Royal Ascot now.
It’s going to be a fairly quiet week runner wise.¬† Scrapper Smith may come out towards the end of the week and he’s [...]

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Max bet

The big day arrives for Max and everything has gone as well as it could have.¬† The ground is probably about right.¬† She seems to be spot on and ready to run her race.¬† Her draw (10) looks pretty good - she’ll need a bit of cover and wouldn’t want to be stuck out left [...]

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Some snippets from my conversations this morning;
In the Free handicap there is a lot of confidence behind Stimulation.  No surprise perhaps as he is the favourite.
Pete tells me that Skadrak will like this ground and trip.¬† There are, however, very strong vibes for Virtual who I’m told was unlucky last season and has wintered very [...]

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Pete called this morning with the news - they had gone out with Winker and he was moving ‘like an old man’, a bit hunched and sluggish.¬† The vet had indicated that this was a minor problem, but it wasn’t going to stand up to training in the short term and Pete wanted to back [...]

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It was a big night last night, with Lord Snooty finally justifying our belief in him¬†by winning his maiden in¬†the US in smart style.¬† I went to bed feeling exhilirated.¬† My Blackberry rang early this morning, showing Pete’s name. ¬†Pete never rings early unless it is bad news -¬†as I picked it up I was [...]

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It’s a big time of year as an owner, and there are highs and lows.¬† Aintree was ultimately a real mix, and there was a lot of good and bad on¬†Saturday.¬† I didn’t go up as I was at AFC Wimbledon for a match that my wider family were sponsoring in memory of¬†my¬†great uncle, who [...]

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Hope Road ran a good race but just got edged out - frustrating and my luck is out at the moment.¬† He’s at least a half decent horse, and he’s running fairly consistently now.¬† He’ll go away for the year and come back in the autumn - he still has his maiden status and he [...]

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I had a long chat with Pete today - I really do need to find some time to go down and watch the horses¬†work, as he is just beginning to wind them up.¬† I haven’t updated my horse list for a while - I own or part own six horses with Pete.¬† The are two [...]

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First things first, and the diet’s going ok - 18st3 this morning.¬† I’ve had a headache but nothing worse than that - I still haven’t worked out how I intend to do it, but the one thing I know I must do is break my sugar habit permanently.¬† Thanks all for the encouraging comments.
¬†I’m having [...]

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I’m still reeling¬†over the Winker news - apart from anything else it was only a gentle piece of work today.¬† I really believe he was a virtual certainty in the Middle Park - Pete certainly thought so and the only threat looked to be Sir Gerry - he would have been a very short price.¬† [...]

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Winker out

Desperate news from Pete - Winker had a setback today and will now miss the rest of the season.  He did a light piece of work this morning and he was fine immediately afterwards, but he was sore and a bit stiff later on and they called in the vet.  An X-ray showed no damage, but [...]

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Winker made the front page of the Racing Post today as Jeremy went public with our ambitious plans.¬†¬†Winker is extremely well and we think¬†he’s the best 2yo out there - we’re going to try to win both the Middle Park and the Dewhurst to prove our point, and we’re hoping we can persuade Jim Bolger [...]

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Bouguereau runs in the 4.40 at Goodwood, and anything other than a win will be a disappointment.  His came fourth last time in the Criterium du Fonds, a listed race at Deaville which is a group race in all but name.  The prize money for this race is greater than that for the Flying Childers [...]

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Pete called us after Winker’s work this morning and said he is still running a bit flat and needs more time.¬† We could have run him over the weekend in group company but he’s too good a horse to take liberties with.¬† The Middle Park is only three weeks away and that is his next [...]

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I’ve been short on time and have a fair bit of catching up to do.¬† No runners last week but a few this week.¬† I’ve been to Newmarket, and the Comic Strip Heroes have bought another three yearlings (possibly four) in the sales.¬† The main event at the WSOPE starts today, and I’m playing in [...]

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Ultimately a disappointing week horse wise, but a good break with the family.
We took the quick ferry over to France on the Monday - around 3 hours from Portsmouth to Cherbourg and a 2 hour drive the other end.¬† It was fairly uneventful - my one observation was that although I wasn’t driving that fast [...]

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I’m off to Deauville with the family¬†this morning - we’ve decided to make a week of it ending with Winker running in the Morny on Sunday.¬† As I’ve said he’s in great form and I think he’ll win easily - the danger looks to be MyBoyCharlie who has been impressive in winning, albeit on heavy [...]

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I had a long chat with Pete today.¬† It’s all systems go for Winker on Sunday week in the Prix Morny, and he’s working extremely well.¬† I don’t see anything beating him - if he wins we may go for an extremely aggressive 2yo campaign with him.
The best news he had concerned Bouguereau.  Pete was [...]

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… and treat those two imposters just the same…¬† I’m not sure I agree with Rudyard Kipling on that one - I definitely prefer triumph to disaster and I’ve seen a bit of both this week.
Authorized’s defeat last week was a blow - I was hoping he’d have an unbeaten 3yo year.¬† I’m less comfortable [...]

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I thought it was an absolutely stunning performance from Winker in the July Stakes - everything went wrong and we still won.¬† I couldn’t have a higher opinion of the horse.¬† We have believed for a while now that it would be an understatement to just call him a¬† classy horse - his work at¬† [...]

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I’ve been waiting to write that headline for a long time.¬† Major Eazy’s win at the fifth attempt on Saturday night was long overdue, and at last we have confirmation of something we have believed for a long time - he is a proper racehorse.
Every jockey who has sat on ME has told us that [...]

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What a day!!¬† We thought he was up to it and we were right.¬† It’s a great thrill and also a relief as I’d got a lot of people onto him who don’t often bet.
I was quietly happy after the race but also a little melancholy.¬† I don’t take a lot of credit for the [...]

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…and I’m beginning to get excited.¬† Winker is extremely well and we’ve been arguing the toss with Pete all week as to which race he’ll go for.¬† It’s looking like we’re going for the Norfolk on Thursday.¬† Major Eazy will run in the Windsor Castle on Tuesday, and Frankie is taking the ride.¬† He’s run [...]

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Winker Watson, recently top of the Racing Post 2yo ratings with 92 has slipped to fourth - Major Eazy is joint seventh on 88. Achilles of Troy tops the list with 100. Call me a pedant but I don’t like the name - Achilles was Greek and he fought against the Trojans, not with them.
Shawhill [...]

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