It really was a case of Super Saturday last weekend……..
At Wetherby on Saturday 3rd Black Pirate made his debut for the yard in the concluding Bumper. It was a war of attrition in the worst of the heavy ground and although at times quite green and momentarily off the bridle down the back, once Conor O’Farrell stoked Pirate up at the bottom of the hill and committed for home the big horse kept finding for his urgings. In the end he did the job impressively winning by 8 lengths. The comment on crossing the line ‘could be useful’ will surely be justified. He is a lovely scopey horse by Black Sam Bellamy and the second horse for Jim Gordon we have sourced from the English point to point/hunting grounds after Aikman. Pirate schools beautifully - he is very clever and neat for a big horse and we are very excited for his future. Thanks to old college friend Clive Webb-Carter and Bobby O’Ryan for spotting him and everyone else playing their important parts.
At Newcastle on Monday 5th we had three runners. Strike the Pose ran in the first ever Mares NH Bumper using the Tapeta. With Rachel MacDonald on board she settled well but could not quicken when it mattered up against her flat-bred rivals.
Sky Full of Stars ran a sound race to come second in the 2m Handicap Hurdle with Henry Brooke up. He was sent off favourite but was beaten by the well handicapped Bulls Head having his first run for Martin Todhunter.
Finally Empire de Maulde with Conor O’Farrell riding did not run his race in the 2m Novice Hurdle. In the main he jumped well but the extreme conditions are a far cry from Corsica and he is possibly still weak. Once he strengthens up he will be a super future prospect.
For the rest of the week snow stopped play with Sedgefield and Carlisle abandoned. This resulted in an aborted trip to Sedgefield with two fancied runners but we only got as far as Hexham in a blizzard and then had to retrace our steps.
Vanessa is on an impressive 20 bto’s for the season and Daina has won almost every time she has been racing - a testament to the Home team who look after the horses so well and also the Travelling team who do the final polishing up and plaiting. Also this week a particular thank you to the Home team who have had to work outside in temperatures down to minus 10 to make sure horses are happy and their hard work is a reflection of the on course results.
Vanessa & Black Pirate
A sense of refreshment this week despite the weather as the summer and flat team start back. Lord Wishes, Lycidas and I am Dandy are walking and trotting and Feetronie De Kervi is now continuing her education. Leslie has done a great job with the boys – Burns Supper, Aquitaine Boy and a Multipede ex High Meadow Girl 2yo ready for breaking in.
Delighted to say that The Cumberland News will now publish our blog weekly and we welcome any other newspapers, blogs radio stations etc. to spread the word. There is so much going on in the North with some great racing and prize money now on offer at tracks like Musselburgh, Kelso and Perth so hopefully the other tracks will follow suit. We encourage visitors and involvement and as such offer The Craig Farm Syndicate as a way into racehorse ownership for all.
Next week we have entries at Ayr, Musselburgh and Kelso.
Conor O’Farrell who now rides out most mornings and is a great asset to the yard is looking for sponsorship so please get in touch with him if you can help.