We have two more dogs off to the Hall Green homefinding kennel tomorrow. I think we have had 20 serious injuries since the start of the year, of which probably 16/17 have been career ending. To put that into perspective, it is probably more than the four previous years combined.
Tomorrow’s two are Brinkleys Ranger and Brinkleys Blaze. Ranger is a particularly likeable dog and might have raced again, given the chance after a broken hock. I even thought about buying him off owner Rob Brinkley but in the end decided it would be difficult to value him, particularly if he came back better than expected. Blaze picked up an Achiles injury. You wouldn’t know he had a problem to see him walk, and it does not affect his life, but it certainly would have inhibited his racing.
I have no qualms about the dogs going. The Hall Green home finding kennel is superb. They have over 100 volunteers and the dogs will be well looked after and no doubt go to great homes.
We have already had three leave the kennel but that leaves about a dozen in the kennel waiting to be re-homed. I have never known a time like it.
I am delighted that GBGB have appointed the STRI to look at track surfaces because I think the subject needs a scientific approach.
The connection between the longest spell and warm weather and the worst injury spell cannot be coincidence. It is not even enough to say we know dogs get injured in the warm weather.
BUT WHY DO THEY GET INJURED!!!
Looking at the injuries to my own dogs, they have been on different tracks and in different circumstances. Black Farran was on his own, Bruisers Bullet was also in a solo trial. Droopys Wilbury was a broken hock after the line, in a solo for having been knocked over in the Derby.
The unluckiest one of all was hurdler Ninja Storm who won his race, was at the pick-up wagging his tail when another dog ran into him and broke his hock.
I know there is a theory about ‘over racing’ due to the media rights thing. It may be an influence, but not in terms of the individual dogs being over raced. I haven’t altered the frequency in the number of races I give my dogs, or their preparation in any way.
Now some people are claiming that the tracks aren’t people prepared correctly because tracks are racing too often and don’t have the time. That might be true. But it might not. What if it is something else?
There are all sorts of possibilities. Are tracks running on sand that still has some salt in it from the winter and is that having an effect? Are some types of sand not suitable for summer racing? Would the tracks benefit from being prepared differently in the summer? Are some tracks faring worse than others?
If so, is neglect really the cause? If it is, then something has to be done to limit racing. But let’s work from fact and not opinion.
It is important that we understand the problem and that is why a scientific approach is needed.
This is way to important for us to keep guessing at.
On the open race scene, we have three in the same semi of the Stayers Classic at Monmore.
I would expect Bombers Bullet to improve on his heat form which was his first look at the track and he looks the strongest of our three.
Roswell Romanov doesn’t quite see out the 630m and I plan that he will then head to Romford for the Champion Stakes. He has a great record there but not in big finals. He won the Coronation Cup but has finished second in two Essex Vase and I would love to see him put matters right. I think we will enter two or three with Saleen Ash also a likely runner.
As for Bombers, I haven’t really decided. After the year we have had, I am not thinking too far ahead. Hopefully we can step him up in trip again with the St.Leger in mind.
We also have a nice pup called Good Lad due to run at Nottingham next week in a preparatory race for the Puppy Classic. I think a bit of him, but you never quite know with youngsters. The experience will do him good.
It is so difficult to find marathons for Aayamzabreeze that one of the owner’s companies, Containers UK Ltd, are sponsoring a 12 runner marathon at Towcester. In the meantime, she is trialling again just to keep her ticking over.
With dogs so hard to come by, I am delighted how our Irish joint breeding venture with Gary Goulden, is going.
I realise that they won’t all be superstars when you breed, but as part of our contract at Towcester, you need dogs for all grades and it is working well.
We retired Hometown Honey recently after three litters. She had done well enough and has thrown open winners, notably Tread Lightly, but after three litters, she has been retired.
I don’t know whether the first Evanta Evita litter has any world beaters in her first litter, they are only November puppies but there are certainly lots of good honest runners. Her second litter by Ballymac Vic all sold and she now been inseminated with one of the last straws from Droopys Scolari.
There is an Adageo Bob litter out of Fairest Royal in the paddocks. Evanta Fantasy and Ribble Aon are waiting to come into season though it looks as though Ribble Atom has now broken and will be mated shortly.
On the subject of breeding, I was delighted to hear that Domino Storm had produced a litter of eight by another of another of old stars Aero Majestic. They are both with Jim Hayton. I know the editor is a big fan of the dog and I can imagine there being plenty of interest in the litter.