Short squeeze

I’ve been very busy this week and I’ve had no time for blogging.  It’s all a bit odd – I’m not working any more but all of the time I’ve freed up has been filled and more.  By the time I’ve fed and dropped of the children (leave at 7:30, hour round trip), been to the gym and walked the dog it’s nearly lunch time.  Most days I’ll fix up afternoon or lunch meetings of some sort and if I don’t there’ll be plenty of other chores to do.  I had a moan to my wife about it;

Me  :  This is ridiculous – all my time is being taken up with menial tasks.

Her :  Well what do you think I’ve been bloody doing for the past seven years? 

Er yes – good point well made.  Now where is that Hoover…

I thought I’d have a runner this week in the shape of Hope Road, a novice hurdler trained by Tom Dascombe that I have a small piece of.  Unfortunately Newbury was called off – he’ll now go to Warwick next week.  I had a long chat with Tom about the remainder of the string, in particular Max One Two Three.  He is confident she will get the mile and thinks we should go for the Guineas, perhaps looking to run in the Fred Darling first.  I’m surprised she isn’t in any of the bookmaker lists as it seems to me she has a respectable chance on form.

I’ve substituted a couple in my ten to follow – L’Antartique and Afsoun are out and Inglis Drever and Nickname are in.  I felt Inglis Drever had become a “must have” – Nickname looks well enough and ought to have plenty of opportunity if the ground stays soft in Ireland.  L’Antartique may be in a difficult place now – too high to win a handicap but not good enough to win a top class chase.  Afsoun I’m a little worried about dropping but he disappointed me last time – he runs tomorrow.

The Gifford horses are mostly OK but Theophrastus has as swelling that is keeping him out of work.  It’s a bit frustrating as he is the one we have highest hopes for – we may change his name as it doesn’t feel like the name of a champion.  Nick runs Straw Bear tomorrow at Haydock in, on the face of it, a match with Afsoun.  With heavy ground underfoot both should run well – I’d hate to see Afsoun prevail after I’ve just dropped him from my list but I’m fairly confident about Straw Bear – if the price is right I’ll be backing him.

Mon Michel‘s price for the Tote Gold Trophy shortened dramatically on Wednesday night – Rodger guessed that Pricewise was going to tip him and he was right.  I’m very bullish about the horse but I’m in no hurry to back him – the ground could be a problem (wouldn’t want it too soft) and he may not get in.

Baldovina failed to sell at the mares sale last year – I was going to put her in the February sale with no reserve but after more thought I decided to keep her and put her in foal.  Her pedigree is perfectly respectable (by Tale of the Cat who has done well recently and is $40k a shot out of a group winning mare from a decent family) and although a little small and light she is reasonably good looking.  Her form was ok at first but tailed off dramatically – something obviously went wrong but it doesn’t necessarily undermine her potential.  She’s booked to Dutch Art.  The main reason for doing it is to have a foal to dry run the stud next year – I doubt I’ll have any other foals at year one.

I’ve started building a position in a quoted company – the first time I’ve done this for a few years.  Silverjet (SIL) is a company I like, and the share price has recently been trashed, initially by a competitor going bust and latterly by a very negative research note from the broker Daniel Stewart (sell with a price target of 0p).  Silverjet claim that the research note is inaccurate and I think they are right – everything I’ve heard about them is positive and I’m getting increasingly familiar with the business.

It’s a funny business when brokers recommend short trades – most don’t really do it.  There is a proper place for this sort of activity – debunking hype stories, exposing all forms of misrepresentation etc.   Often though a short note can self fulfil by undermining the company in the eyes of investors and customers – the DS note could damage SIL as SIL can’t afford their customers and investors to lose faith, but I’m happy to be betting against that.  I’m more than happy to be buying shares off short traders in this one.  Fingers crossed – I’ve paid 40p this afternoon for a few.