A nice bit of rain and more winners for the team; well deserved after a soaking first thing this morning when riding out.
Saint Freule, pictured, has become Blair's project; Blair rides him each day, taking him out on his own and trying to keep him settled and sweet. For the past ten days he has jumped him each day to keep his confidence up and today except for a slight issue before the start, Saint did not put a hoof wrong. I think the main breakthrough has been Blair's understanding that Saint is anxious and those at Hexham will have seen Jaimie taking her time with Saint beforehand to keep him relaxed. Anyway, it worked today and I am sure that Saint will be even more effective over further on soft ground; it was great to have a winner for the ever patient Kenny Alexander.
Kenny's other horse, Miss Batten travelled and jumped really well, but three furlongs out her breathing issues returned and she could not stay on. She will visit Geoff Lane the wind surgeon again in the near future.
Le Frank doubled up for us in the last when his recent intensive schooling paid off and he stayed on really well up the Hexham hill. He has lots of scope and should go on from here; he could be an exciting chaser for his owner Steven Smith.
Chanceiton tried hard but the soft ground and a recent busy time got the better of him, Cameron wisely pulling up. He will have a deserved short holiday now before coming back in the early spring.
It was a great advert for the talent in the yard that Derek, Blair and Stephen all rode winners today; Stephen for Katie Scott. We are lucky to have such good riders riding out here daily and adding so much to the team.
Stephen heads to Market Rasen tomorrow where he rides the new internet star Ryalex. Having been put up fifteen pounds for his recent Carlisle win, Ryalex will run with just a seven pound penalty tomorrow. We will check the ground, but it sounds as if Rasen has had rain and if Ryalex can stay the three miles he has a good chance of following up.
See an article about Ryalex in the Horse and Hound HERE