Morning digest: Sceau happy Cheltenham is back

Sceau Royal

CHELTENHAM returns on Friday. Hurrah! The Novices’ Chase gets the pulse racing with Sceau Royal taking on fencing debutantes North Hill Harvey and Movewiththetimes. Sceau Royal, who jumped hurdles as quickly as anything I’ve seen, made a decent winning chasing debut at Warwick but this is tougher. He is not the biggest but I …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Racing mourns death of Pat Haslam

Pat Haslam

SADNESS abounds this morning. Legendary northern trainer Pat Haslam has passed away, aged 69. The trainer of more than 1,000 winners, he was a much-loved figure in the sport and even after retiring he helped son Ben who took over the reins at Castle Hill Stables in Middleham. Condolences to Pat’s family. Also, Kempton was …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Oceane to make waves in Cesarewitch


I WAS thrilled by the victory of Laurens in the Fillies’ Mile yesterday. It was a first Group One for PJ McDonald and there was something uplifting about the northern-trained filly conquering the Coolmore juggernaut. The silks of owner John Dance are becoming a familiar sight in winners’ enclosures and it is a reward for …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Cooperman to the rescue

Bryan Cooper

THIS time of year sees the usual merry-go-round of jump jockeys swapping stables and starting new retainers. But I was surprised when it was announced that Bryan Cooper would ride Alan Potts’ horses trained in the UK. Robbie Power, who was magnificent last season as Potts’ number one, will ride the owner’s horses in Ireland. …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Bravo for Finian’s Oscar

Finian's Oscar

THIS weekend’s Chepstow meeting has gained traction in recent years as the real starting point for the proper National Hunt season. Cheltenham’s Showcase fixture or the Charlie Hall at Wetherby have traditionally signalled the changing of the guard. But the presence of Finian’s Oscar this weekend offers more lustre to Chepstow’s curtain raiser. He could …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Manchego is the big cheese

Hugo Palmer trains Manchego

THE very nature of horse racing means that it occasionally leaves you feeling like you’ve been punched in the stomach. Such a moment occurred yesterday at Limerick when the highly talented Mega Fortune suffered a fatal fall when well clear. Words don’t really cut the mustard on occasions like these apart from condolences must go …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Crownthorpe can reign at Redcar

Crownthorpe trainer Richard Fahey

AUSSIE wonder mare Winx won her 21st race on the bounce early this morning in the Group One Turnbull Stakes at Flemington. Read about how she did it here. Today Aidan O’Brien bids for his 23rd Group One victory this calendar year in the Sun Chariot Stakes where Roly Poly has strong claims. The Gosden-Dettori …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Gloam is where the heart is


JOHN Gosden, acting for Godolphin, outbid Coolmore’s John Magnier to pay 4,000,000 guineas for a yearling at Tattersalls yesterday. The mighty tussle between the two breeding and bloodstock empires was described as a wonderful piece of theatre. The filly, by Galileo out of Breeders’ Cup winner Dank, has been named Gloam. No trainer has been …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Sceau this is jump racing…

Sceau Royal

GREAT news that the brilliant Harry Angel stays in traning next season. It’s been a stellar year for sprinters with Battaash, Marsha, Lady Aurelia and Caravaggio having their moments in the sun but Harry Angel, to my eyes at least, looks the best of them all. He goes for the British Champions Sprint on Champions …[Read More]

Morning Digest: Tatts entertainment


THE Tattersalls sales kick off at Newmarket today with 502 bluebloods going under the hammer. The main focus will be Godolphin’s buying strategy and whether they continue their new trend of buying progeny of Coolmore stallions. For the record, Galileo has 19 offspring for sale this week. Watch this space. On the track Death Duty …[Read More]