Calle Malva allayed her trainer's fears that she would not handle good ground by running out a convincing winner of the mares chase at Newcastle. Jumping boldly although a little to the right, she stayed on strongly after the last. Her owners, Carron and Bruce Wymer and my father have had a good few days with their mares, Calle and Without Conviction, and both should continue to progress.
Earlier Charmix improved in confidence through the race, given a good ride by Patrick having his first chase ride. Patrick does not lack experience though as he schools three or four times a week here, and he is an experienced work rider. There will be more opportunities for him and Charmix over the next few months. Eeyore was rather outpaced in the two and a half mile mares hurdle, although her hurdling improved through the race, and she may be over further next time.
Today Saint Freule looked out of love with racing at Wetherby and pulled up in the two mile handicap hurdle. We will see how he is over the next few days.
The lorry rolled on to Cheltenham this afternoon where Big River makes his seasonal debut tomorrow in the three mile three furlong handicap chase. Plenty of rain today has eased the ground which will be in his favour and he feels sharper than he did this time last year. We are hoping for a good run to set him up for the rest of the winter.