Christmas at Folly House was a fun, if a slightly hectic one……but we celebrated in style by winning the feature chase on the Wincanton card on Boxing Day.
Thankfully Father Christmas arrived for the children and much to their amazement he ate three mince pies and all of the port! My parents came up on Christmas Eve, and we had a pretty busy Christmas day with stockings, breakfast, morning stables, riding out, Church and then present opening before lunch!
We therefore all had an early night in preparation for an even busier Boxing Day where we had three runners at Wincanton and two at Fontwell. I was delighted that Shockingtimes won the feature chase on the card – I was pleased for all of his owners, pleased for the yard, and more importantly pleased for him! Having been so consistent this season, he's crept up in the handicap without winning which obviously makes life tougher each time, so he deserved to win one, and to win a nice pot such as the Lord Stalbridge Cup was very special on my home turf.
Shockingtimes parading on our Open Day.
Poor Souriyan took a nasty fall in the novice chase at Wincanton – thankfully both he and Tom O’Brien were only shaken and bruised by the incident, and both will live to fight another day. It was frustrating as it didn’t look a strong contest, and I am sure it was Souriyan’s race to lose! We then ran Double Treasure in the bumper and he finished 6th. He is a lovely horse for the future, and was slightly disappointing, but he’s not really a bumper horse and I probably had him a bit burly too!
Meanwhile down at Fontwell Tea Caddy was in the process of running a fantastic race under our amateur, Page Fuller and had every chance when she was all but taken out by a lose horse at the 4th last when she was mounting her challenge! She got back into contention at the 2nd last but stumbled and fell. This looked a very winnable opportunity for her, but luck wasn’t on her side. She deserves to gain compensation over the coming weeks…. Midnight Silver made her handicap debut at Fontwell and was 4th. She made a bad mistake at the first down the back and that knocked her back from 3rd position to last and that ultimately cost her any chance. She’ll be winning before long.
Despite unseating Brendan at Exeter on his chasing debut, I still think Monbeg Theatre will be a smart novice chaser for us this season, and he's entered up this weekend - I hope we might see a clear round from him this time. Below is a link to a video I took of him in the outdoor school this morning.
One final note - you might like to see the view from the office (jeep) window this morning: