Just a week ago we were in the middle of the Cheltenham Festival which proves how much can change in seven days!
The yard had several runners at the Festival, but none of them were particularly fancied in the betting market. Kansas City Chief delivered the best result as he managed a sixth-place finish in the Pertemps Network Final having led the field for most of the race. Despite starting at 66-1, Kansas City Chief certainly outran those odds and was only beaten by some much more fancied rivals.
There were another couple of good performances at Kempton on Saturday when Bootlegger and No Hidden Charges both made the first five in the handicap hurdle run for horses that had been balloted out of races at the Festival. Both ran with great credit to be battling for prizemoney in the closing stages.
Unfortunately, that all seems like a long time ago already, as we all come to terms with the suspension of racing in the UK until the end of April, as a result of the battle against the spread of the Coronavirus.
In addition to providing normal daily care for the horses, the suspension will take us to the end of the national hunt season and so time needs to be taken to reassess the plans for each horse so that their training plans can be appropriately altered if this is necessary. As ever, the priority of everyone at the yard is the welfare of the horses, but the suspension of racing impacts on the whole industry and we need to make sure that everyone involved with the horses, the team at the yard, the various parties that support the yard and the owners are all looked after.
Some great support has already been received from owners and it is brilliant that everyone pulls together in a situation like this. This helps to minimise the impact on all involved and hopefully will ensure that we "hit the ground running" once the current suspension is lifted.