I had trouble accessing the blog over the weekend and wasn’t able to post. This was probably a good thing as I gave Mon Michel a squeak in his pipe opener – he ran vaigly ok, finishing in mid division having tired on the ground and through the odd mistake. We’ll be aiming him at the big handicap hurdles he can get into.
Saturday’s big race was of course the Paddy Power, and I know several of the Hales family – John Hales owned the favourite, Granit Jack. They thought the world of the horse and he was expected to follow in the footsteps of One Man and Azertyioup. It wasn’t to be – he came cruising at the third last and looked a sure winner, but the downhill fence caught him out and he broke his neck. By all accounts John, who lost One Man in similar fashion nine years ago, was devastated.
I was upset – I turned off the TV after the race and didn’t turn it on again for the rest of the weekend. It doesn’t change anything for me though – risk is a fundamental piece of the chasing game, and I accept it just as pretty much everyone involved in NH racing does. I understand Cheltenham are going to take a look at the downhill fence, which I think is right.
I may have at Ascot runner on Friday – Ours is working better now and may take his chance in a 2 mile hurdle. Lilac Moon may run at Lingfield next monday.