It has been quite a trying time in the last few weeks as heavy snow made life difficult at the yard before equine flu hit British racing a few days later and the sport was shutdown for a six day period. While the BHA was placed in a difficult position, it was particularly galling to see some ideal opportunities for our small winter string disappear into thin air.
However, racing has resumed and while we have waited two weeks longer than expected, we have had back to back winners with SINGING THE BLUES and LADY WOLF (pictured) getting the job done before GREYZEE finished an honourable second at Southwell today.
Pat was on board Singing The Blues in the amateur riders race at Wolverhampton on Tuesday and while he was a bit keen in the early stages, he was always in the right place and quickened off the bend to win very cosily by three and three quarter lengths. While there was lots in his favour, he had not endured much luck at Kempton on previous starts and the penny may well have dropped on the back of that victory. He will return to Kempton under a 6lb penalty next week.
It was poignant success for Lady Wolf at Chelmsford on Wednesday as Mary O’Sullivan, founder of Howard Barton Stud and a staunch supporter of the stable for many years, sadly passed away the night before her win. While our thoughts are with Mary’s family and friends, we know how much it will have meant to Mary to get a victory from one of her homebred fillies. Lady Wolf herself had had a wide trip when failing to stay 1m3f at Kempton last week and dropped back to 1m2f at last night, she battled on bravely under a good ride from Rob Hornby.
We were hopeful of landing a three-day hat-trick as Greyzee went to Southwell this afternoon, but he finished second again, just losing ground round the homebend where he had a face full of kickback before staying on strongly in the closing stages to claim the runner up spot. He is certainly capable of winning races and has clearly improved from two to three.