|ATM winning the 2016 STAGBI Future Broodmares race (Bill Cardno photo)|
On Friday night I also took the opportunity on behalf of STAGBI to present Bobby Miller, owner of Live In Beauty, with the trophy for winning the mares race last year. Bobby had been unable to attend the BHRC/STAGBI joint awards event in February and I felt that it was important for him to receive the award in a proper presentation in light of the mare passing away during the winter. The Miller family, trainer Paul Cullen and his wife Caroline came across to the winner's circle to be presented with flowers and the trophy by myself and Willie Paterson on behalf of the SHRC. Congratulations to all of the connections, who will have a three year old Doonbeg son out of the mare racing shortly.
|Presentation to Bobby Miller and family for Live In Beauty, 2014 & 2015 STAGBI Future Broodmares winner|
I'd also like to say a big CONGRATULATIONS to Keir Cullen who drove his first winner on Friday night in the form of Reverend Run. Led out, made all, and nearly had me in hysterics roaring his horse home off the last bend!
|Keir Cullen's first driving win onboard Reverend Run (Bill Cardno photo)|
As I've also included in my Harnesslink report (http://www.harnesslink.com/UK-Ireland/Fwd--Article2345), Willie Paterson's stables had a stormer of a day with two winners and a second in a photo finish having only taken three runners. Congratulations to the team, which comprises of Willie's son Gregor, eye-catching young driver Ross Leary, Bryan Moncrieff and owner/driver of Ayr Pandemic, Gary Logan. Their three charges, Dreamfair Carrie, Ayr Pandemic and Hawthorns Maggie certainly carried on where the Scottish winners left off a fortnight ago at the main Appleby event.
And so we look forward to Thursday night at Corbiewood which features the SHRC 3YO Derby, which this year is split for the colts and fillies. Crosshill Ace returns for her second qualifier with her now-regular driver Willie Drysdale taking the reins once again. Be there!
Things that got my goat this week
Oh here goes again. My poor goat doesn't know whether it's coming or going, but this week it's really been gotten again.
- Remember Rule N15 of the BHRC rules? That stewards may require a horse to requalify in certain circumstances, which includes where a horse breaks in two consecutive starts. Remember that time Smarty proposed at a SHRC meeting that the SHRC compel the stewards at Corbiewood to use this rule by making it a club rule that stewards will require a horse to requalify if it breaks in two consecutive starts at the track (note, not elsewhere)? And it got adopted?
Seemingly, a load of people knew nothing about it. Funny how when you don't want something to be known at Corbiewood, everyone knows all about it within days, if not hours. Funnier still that some people claiming ignorance of the rule had close friends and relatives at the meeting where it was adopted without objection. People must not speak around the dinner table anymore.
In three meetings at Corbiewood, three horses have been asked to requalify. The first two did so on Friday night without issue. The third was requested to requalify after it had raced on Friday night. I understand that the manner by which the stable was asked to requalify could have been handled a lot better, but regardless of the stewards' social skills, the rule itself is one of the best rules in existence. It is the exact same rule as is in place in North America, where they're not going hell for leather around a three eighths of a mile track. I am therefore alarmed at the reactions of some who believe the rule is backwards and unnecessary. Safety of competitors should be of paramount importance to us all. Although the rule does not eliminate the risk of accidents, it does take massive steps towards reducing the risk. No horse is 'too good' to requalify if it continues to pose a risk to those who compete against it.
Remember that folks. There is no point in shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted. When the rule was proposed by Smarty, it was not done so in his capacity as a bookmaker. Lord only knows the bookies are fond of erratic and unpredictable horses that people want to back. No, it was proposed in his capacity as an SHRC member and also as a BHRC licence holder. We do not want our driver, or our horses, injured by the actions of a serial breaker. We don't want ANY driver, or ANY horse, injured by the actions of a serial breaker. Safety first. Which is why I took great umbrage to my boyfriend being referred to as a 'twat' for suggesting the rule. His heart is in the right place and there is no ulterior motive here. But hey, bookies are money-grabbers with no real interest in the sport. That's a whole different goat-related section for another time.
- People who say they're going to do something. Just go ahead and do it. Smarty once said to me, "Don't be afraid of the people who say what they're going to do to you; be afraid of the ones who just do it."
Over and out,
Disgruntled and mildly alarmed #1 Groom
P.S. on a more positive note, a lengthy conversation with a gentleman and a true harness racing supporter on Sunday lifted my spirits. I'll keep doing what I'm doing ;)