A tiring but jolly and good Friday in town, where I attend the AGM and annual lunch of The Turf Automobile Society. This august body was only established recently and is closely involved with defining the correct procedures for advancing transport systems and vehicle management for those uninclined or prevented from motoring to or from Britain’s racecourses. This four-hour meeting reinforced my long-held opinion that introducing the Turkish Dolmus transport system is overdue in this country and also – and as an aside – that the food in London’s Clubs has dramatically improved in the last decade. Later I had to go to dinner, luckily in the same venue where I was to receive an award for some of the near-charitable work I undertook in racing last year. The Twelve Club was started in 1924, and much in the manner of an Oscar Wilde play, in a railway carriage. It runs a competition each year in which the 100 members select a dozen horses each and pit their list against their fellows’ lists. This year I won one of the principal awards, which is given for generating the biggest theoretical income to benefit the bookmaking industry. The hand-carved wooden model of a 12yo Seller at Chelmsford (By Poor Result out of My Choice) is for Being Unequalled in Misadventure and is thus known as The Bum. Well, that’s my version of events anyway.
This morning the entire Open Reach system, was supposed to be mending bits of copper wiring buried in the pavement outside the Chateau d’If. Instead, it was elsewhere, and if I stood on a bucket and plugged The Hon into a socket and gave her a coat hanger, I could just about call the operator on an old Nokia. I have therefore had to come to the Lambourn office to do any form. So much of our lives is now managed via copper and glass wiring that if the lights aren’t on at one end of the wire, your computerised form books, your heating, your kettle, your TV can all down tools and shut up shop. Judging by the unsurprised applause my collection of The Bum received last night, this separation of myself from the form books might be considered pro bono. Talking of which, I am currently working on a Wall of Fame where those of you who have been so gracious in your support of our efforts to amuse, educate and enliven your lives with Turnip Recipes will be acknowledged – without naming names… but you’ll know who you are, and I am grateful.
Seven runners in The Greatwood – average for the last 18 years 12.3… just saying.
1:15 KELSO bet365 Cyril Alexander Memorial Novices’ Limited Hcap Chs Cl3 (5yo+ 0-135) 2m5½f 7 run
Well ahead of his 136 in my opinion – hammered them at Lingfield LTO, can’t see past..
SHOLOKJACK 4 pts Win
1:30 DONCASTER Virgin Bet Cheltenham Festival Money Back Hcap Chs Cl2 (5yo+) 2m½f 5 run
If he jumps better then maybe..
GOLD DES BOIS 2 pts e/w
1:50 KELSO bet365 Morebattle Hdl Cl2 (4yo+) 2m 16 run
The Shunter won this race two years ago for Ireland and it could be heading back there thanks to COLONEL MUSTARD. 3rd in the County Hurdle and there have been some disappointments this season, but this has been the target for some time I think.
COLONEL MUSTARD 3 pts e/w
2:10 NEWBURY BetVictor Non-Runner-No-Bet At Cheltenham Seniors’ Hcap Hdl Cl3 (8yo+ 0-130) 2m4½f 11 run
Jonjo O’Neill’s LOCK’S CORNER has been all over the distances in his recent entries and whilst Jonjo isn’t necessarily firing on all 8 at the moment, this one is hard to ignore
LOCKS CORNER 3 pts e/w
2:25 KELSO bet365 Premier Novices’ Hdl (G2) Cl1 (4yo+) 2m2f 11 run
LOOKAWAY 2 pts e/w
2:45 NEWBURY BetVictor Greatwood Gold Cup Hcap Chs Cl1 (5yo+) 2m4f 7 run
I think the market has it about right.
Dutch the top two GEMIRANDE and LORD BADDESLEY for 8 pts (about evens). Plus a 2 pt RFC
3:00 KELSO bet365 Hcap Hdl Cl2 (4yo+ 0-145) 2m5f 10 run
NELLS SON turns out not to be a chaser and could be a useful hurdler. He’s got a decent mark and looks e/w value
NELLS SON 3 pts e/w
3:15 DONCASTER Virgin Bet Grimthorpe Hcap Chs Cl2 (5yo+) 3m2f 7 run
I have a short list of three CASTLE ROBIN, WINDSOR AVENUE and the “what went wrong?” SPORTING JOHN.Based purelyonthevalue,I’msuggesting
WINDSOR AVENUE 2 pts e/w
3:25 NEWBURY Not on TV
GIPSY DE CHOISEL 3 pts Win
3:35 KELSO bet365 Premier Chs Cl1 (5yo+) 2m7½f 4 run