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22nd April 2024 10:25 pm

“A difference of opinion is what makes horse racing and missionaries."

Doncaster St Leger Meeting Day 1

These Donors Are AMAZING Thank You

William S – MEJi – Peter N – Nigel B – Ken C – Mark S – James D – William M – Fiona M – Julian A – Jonathan H – Mrs V.M – Pete BN – Gavin C – Thom S – Sarah C – Mark S – Sam H – James R

The Hon has gone to do 3rd lot with Ben Pauling and to take a bacon sarnie off him. I have to find three duvets and a box of linen, all of which seem to have dematerialised but which need to be found because there are house guests tonight and again on Saturday. In between, I have to go to Coventry, the City of Choice of my dentist, keep up with Donny, get some scratch from the spitting machine for the Estate Workers and try to find out whether the Saturday house guest is being serious about bringing some roadkill venison.

My brain is fried from the last few days, and it will take me some time to recover from a foray to Town for a 50th birthday bash, where my host’s mother-in-law precisely followed the fancy dress party code of coming as a “J”, by wearing nothing but jay cloths. She is quite the most dazzling 6′ woman of a certain age and only declared herself unwell after the third pint of Tom Collins. I was gallant enough not to see her safely home! I am not good at dressing up, but I did have a black shirt and a pair of old black jeans, so I wore those and claimed to be Johny Cash. The Hon went – and looked like – a very attractive Jockey. We stayed in Battersea and had breakfast by the river, whilst Battersea Heliport was a hive of activity. Does Saddam Khan know about this place? I love the smell of Avgas or Jet 3, redolent always of aircraft carriers, helicopter action and fun times, but the Co2 Kg output is 40 times greater per jet-ranger hour than a car. When I was having breakfast, I saw nine helicopters and wondered whether they had paid £12.50 to come into town.

Then to Hampshire for Wrinkly post-wedding drinks. I had been too blase about the whole weekend, and inevitably God pointed the fickle finger of fate and caused the A3 and M3 to remain steadfastly buggered, making a 75-minute journey take over 2½ hours, so we missed the bride, we missed a godson, and we missed many canapes. The dog was collected from Purdah and I was given further insight into his failed mocks. The long and the short of it is, apparently, that he has been turned into an athlete by too much walking and needs less of that and more of the mental training. Hoping to help the dog’s mental development, I found an audiobook of three Greek tragedies; “Medea” by Euripides; “Antigone” by Sophocles; and “Agamemnon” by Aeschylus. I had thought to play them to Rocky overnight to see if that sharpened him up. Luckily for him, I read this review – which I swear is genuine. Damned by faint praise doesn’t really cut it here.

The narration is perhaps one of the worst performances anywhere conducted to bring vocal life to a book, or as in this case, not only take life away from it but also stamp down on any remaining flame of life with wicked vengeance. The performance itself is adequate to render this great drama of betrayal and vengeance and dismay an utter torment to listen to. Find a better version to listen to, which considering how absolutely catastrophic this is, would be any other version available.

Talking of warnings of catastrophe, here are the tips for Day 1 of the Leger meeting.

1:15 Meriel Tufnell Apprentice Hcap Cl4 (3yo+ 0-85) 6f SKY 14 run

STRONG JOHNSON finally won at Redcar two starts back and showed he remains in form when a ½l 2nd of 11 at Ripon 9 days ago. I quite fancy at the weights ANTIPHON

STRONG JOHNSON 2 pts Win – ANTIPHON 1 pt e/w

1:50 British Stallion Studs EBF “Carrie Red” Fillies’ Nursery Hcap Cl2 (2yo) 6½f ITV4 11 run

You can’t ignore GRANNY BUDGIE’s ground form, given that we don;t know whether CHIC COLUMBINE will handle cut.


2:25 Weatherbys Scientific £300,000 2-Y-O Stks Cl2 (2yo) 6½f ITV4 17 run

KVT’s DRAGON LEADER has 8lb to find on official ratings with the likely favourite JOHANNES BRAHMS, but he gets receives 10lb here and regardless of ground that should be enough to beat JB. However, neither is a sexy price, and I have a high regard for Kevin Ryan’s record here, with two winners, a second and a third in the last decade, which makes ROOM SERVICE and VANTHEMAN exciting contenders – especially seeing Tom Marquand in the plate for VANTHEMAN. Stablemate WE NEVER STOP doesn’t make my shortlist on a set of weakish trends, so it’s simply a question of how to back them.


3:00 Betfred May Hill Stks (G2) (Fillies) Cl1 (2yo) 1m ITV4 8 run

DARNATION should win this and won’t mind the ground – but SEE THE FIRE caught the eye winning her debut at Newmarket over 7f last month. She is on my Guineas and Oaks shortlist and maybe she should be backed for The Fillies Mile on 13th October. It just depends on the bloody ground.

SEE THE FIRE 3 pts e/w

SEE THE FIRE 2 pts Win Filles Mile Antepost 14/1 with William Hill – 1 pt Win The 1000 Guineas 33/1 William Hill

3:35 Betfred Park Hill Fillies’ Stks (G2) (Fillies & Mares) Cl1 (3yo+) 1m6½f ITV4 10 run

I’m not sure this is the strongest renewal so purely on the ground I suggest

CHING SHIH 3 pts e/w

4:10 Hippo Bamboo Wipes Hcap Cl2 (3yo 0-105) 1m2f SKY 8 run

WESTERTON 2 pts e/w

4:45 Winners Wear Skopes Menswear Hcap Cl3 (3yo+ 0-90) 1m4f SKY 10 run

MATCHLESS 2 pts e/w

5:20 Chique Boutique Doncaster Specialists In Racewear Nursery Hcap Cl3 (2yo 0-95) 7f SKY 7 run

No Bet – if only because someone let the sponsor put that name up




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