Rain has swept through the country with a vengeance this past week and racing has been severely affected to the extent where one of Beverleys big nights was called off last night owing to a waterlogged course.
This column’s old friend Clerk of the Course at Haydock Kirkland Tellwright or should that be Tellwrong would no doubt have called it good to soft up until 5.30 when he had to be rescued by a local lifeguard at the furlong pole. Last Saturday at Haydock the old rascal was claiming the ground was good right up to Saturday morning and we had horses like Sole Power over from Ireland who must have it good at least. He became a non runner like several others when it became clear on Saturday the ground was very soft and Mr Tellwright was forced to change the conditions.
It’s time the BHA cracked down on this practice with massive fines and disciplinary action because as punters we rely on Official Going descriptions just as much as owners and Trainers and if they turn out to be nonsense with courses not wanting to scare off potential runners then they are not official they are a joke. Nothing will happen in this case and there are other courses who are dubiously slow to admit the state of play who need slapping down.
Lets hope last Saturday’s farce at Haydock will prove a tipping point or “Watermark”.
Perhaps Kirkland could work for news at ten as a weatherman and get people rushing to the seaside as he forecast a heatwave only to be washed away as flooding swept the coast forcing him to admit he had his World map upside down.
Tonight Sandown stage a superb card showing there is an appetite for high quality mid week action. Tonights card is far better than anything we had last Saturday and while we are on the subject of weekends what’s with the obsession with just staging low quality jumps racing on Sundays. It’s called the Flat season for a reason and the BHA are killing Sundays by staging endless poor jumps cards. Flat fans have been forced to betting in Ireland and in France which I would imagine it isn’t what they want.
So enjoy Sandown tonight if you have RUK it will be good to see Brown Panther again after his win at Chester. He won’t find it easy tonight but will have to win if he is to go on and land his owners dream of winning the Ascot Gold Cup. And of course if it’s raining heavy use your own judgement about the state of the ground!
Back next Thursday.
Stable Line Gold