Well it was certainly great to be back on track earlier in the week and overall, the horses performed creditably in some extremely competitive events. Considering the uncertainty regarding racing’s return, we took a fairly conservative approach with their training regimes during lockdown and it is likely that all our older horses will improve a fair bit for their first outings. We werey pleased with the efforts of both SINGING THE BLUES (3rd) and MASTER GREY (5th) racing over a distance slightly too short for them on Tuesday. While both SIR RODERIC (5th) and SIR PLATO (8th) had a fighting chance entering the final furlong before the lack of a recent run told on Wednesday.
The younger horses take centre stage with a couple of two-year-olds and Bettys Hope in action over the weekend. With twenty-five two-year-olds in the yard this year, we have plenty of depth to our juvenile division and they are our stars of the future. While we undoubtedly have some racy types that are ready to go early (a few wanted to run in April!) the aim is always to bring our horses on with experience, have an enjoyable first outing and go on to improve throughout their racing career.
A £2,000 Markaz filly and she might just be a bit of a bargain as she has a bit of size and substance to her and has done everything we have asked so far. There is a bit of stamina in her pedigree as she is out of a Fastnet Rock mare whose half-sister Queen Blossom won on debut over a mile at two before going onto win a Group 3 again over a mile on her 3yo return. First season sire Markaz, a 6f Group 3 winner and brother to Meccas Angel injects some speed into the pedigree (she is one of three representatives in the field) so a debut over six furlongs will tell us plenty for the future.
A sharp compact filly that was ready to run on week one of the turf season and lockdown has proved particularly frustrating as a two-year-old like her would have gained some valuable experience and used her precociousness to her advantage in the first few months of the season.
Her dam Glen Molly was a winner second time out and hit a rating of 90 for Barry Hills and has produced a couple of sprint winners. Unfortunately, she was balloted out of the weaker Auction event on Friday so has to take on some well bred expensive fillies but it will be experience gained with the aim of keeping her busy on the quick summer ground.
Luckily for Betty, she had a clear run at the start of 2019 and a year ago she already has three seconds and that breakthrough Chepstow success to her name. What followed was a complete fairytale in July as she landed a £20,000 Nursery at Chelmsford before the hat-trick was secured in the £250,000 Super Sprint. We did not really learn a lot from her final two runs, she went off too fast when fifth in a Listed race at Ripon and was second on her side having had a troubled passage in the Sales race at Newmarket in October.
Unfortunately, but not surprisingly for such an early two-year-old, she has not grown much from two to three but has put on 25kg so there is a bit more muscle to her. She was trained quite hard early on in the year to try and get some black-type in Fillies Listed events in April. Obviously, that was not to be and waiting until June to make her return is not ideal, but she is certainly raring to go now. A mark of 89 is fair on her Super Sprint form but others may have improved passed her and Saturday will give us an idea of where she actually is as a three-year-old. It is a very competitive handicap, she will be the likely outsider but it will just be great to have her back on track and a high draw in 11 might just be an advantage if racing at Newmarket today was anything to go by!
It will be her first run for the Millman Racing Club, so it is a great shame for our members that they won’t be able to enjoy a fantastic day out at Newmarket but hopefully it won’t be long before owners, then spectators, will be allowed back on track.