It’s wonderful to have the flat racing back into full swing now, and as there is no jump racing until 1st July, we thought we may as well have a couple of runners at Royal Ascot this week. Obviously, we’ve not had a runner for 3 months (since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic), so we thought we’d have some fun on the flat - at least it gives them a racecourse gallop prior to jumping!
Our debut Royal Ascot runner was Carntop who ran in the Ascot stakes yesterday. He had been runner up in the Lingfield Derby Trial in 2016, but had only won one race on the level before coming to us to go jumping. He has since won a brace of novice hurdles and a handicap, and is set for another summer over hurdles. I was delighted with his effort yesterday as he was 10th of 20 but just didn’t quite stay. He travelled well into the race at the 2-furlong marker, and gave us all a bit of hope but his stamina gave away and he took a couple of bumps inside the final furlong. It was a surreal experience of racing behind closed doors, but I am quite looking forward to our next runner there on Saturday when Adrrastos runs in the Queen Alexandra!
Meanwhile, it was great to see the recent publication of the jumping programme book for July, and the programme for August should be published by the end of June. We should have a handful of runners ready for the first few meetings, and I look forward to getting back to a bit of normality.