We’re back! Yes, after a scorching summer sabbatical, it’s great to return with the first Racing Ramblings of the season ahead of what we hope will be a wonderful winter with plenty of winners.
All of our equine team have returned to their respective stables along with some new recruits who we are looking forward to seeing on the track over the coming months.
I popped along to Sam Thomas’s yard a couple of weeks ago and it was great to see so many familiar faces including the likes of Before Midnight who proved a real star for Potter Group last season winning at Cheltenham and Ascot as well as boasting some excellent efforts in defeat. He looks marvellous and was entered in the same race he won at Prestbury Park last year (on Saturday) but after not working to his usual standard on Wednesday, Sam has decided to hold fire for another week and is looking towards the Byrne Group Handicap Chase at Ascot on October 29th before, all being well, heading back to the same track on 19th November for the £125,000 Hurst Park Chase.
Mot A Mot has entries at Bangor and Chepstow on Tuesday and is set to make his chasing debut at either of those venues. Like every other trainer in the land, it’s been a case of waiting for the rain to arrive so the weather will very much dictate proceedings. The Bangor race looks the slightly easier option at this stage but Chepstow might cut up, plus he won his bumper at the track, so we wouldn’t rule out anything as it stands.
Our Power and Stolen Silver are both doing well and have possible objectives at Wincanton and Cheltenham.
We’re also look forward to unleashing our first bumper runner of the season in the shape of Range, a lovely looking five-year-old son of Shantou who has been showing enough at home to suggest he’s ready for a run and it will be interesting to see what we’ve got.
Unfortunately Mario De Pail has suffered the reoccurrence of a leg injury and is out for the whole season along with Jack Sharp who is also set to miss the term.
It’s All In The Name
Mister Fisher, who carries the familiar silks of James and Jean Potter Ltd has resumed residence at Seven Barrows and looks a million dollars, as he always does. He had a slightly up and down 2021/22 campaign but still managed to win the G2 Silviniaco Conti Chase at Kempton in January and he’ll be targeted at races like that again, with the G2 Peterborough Chase (a race he won at Cheltenham in 2020) at Huntingdon on 4th December an early season target.
It was lovely to see him leading one of our unraced youngsters up the gallop earlier this week and if any of them are half as good as ‘Jezza’ we won’t complain.
We have a four-year-old gelding by Blue Bresil out of Chocca Wocca who James and Jean Potter Ltd own in partnership with Richard and Lizzie Kelvin-Hughes and he’s been named Choccabloc, while the filly by Yorton Stud sire Pethers Moon (ex Lady Beaufort) has been subject to some lovely gallop reports from Nicky Henderson who said we better “hurry up and find a name for her because she’s not far off a run” so she shall forever be known as Moon Lady. The Hora filly by Kayf Tara has been named Call The Dance. (pic)
Obviously it’s very early days, and we’re in no rush, but they’ve all been training well and it’s great to have some new Bloodstock on the ground who will hopefully carry our colours with distinction.
Dan Skelton has got a marvellous set up and I called into his Warwickshire base on Thursday to check in on Smiling Getaway who was purchased at the Cheltenham Sale last November, having won her sole Point to Point, and she is coming along nicely.
Unfortunately she picked up a minor leg injury after a short time in training so it was decided to send her straight home to Leighton to give her time to fully recover and grow into her frame. She’s been back at Skelton’s since August and is doing almost an hour of trotting every day, which she’s been doing for over a week, as well as prolonged periods on the horse walker. She’ll begin steady cantering within the next ten days or so, and if everything continues to go well her trainer expects her to be ready to run over hurdles around Christmas time.
Potterman has summered well and is being targeted at the Badger Ales Chase at Wincanton on November 5th – a race he’s finished second in for the last two years so we’re hoping it’s a case of third time lucky!
Back at HQ
Cheltenham kicks off its new season with great anticipation on Friday and, despite the weather being so dry leading up to this weekend, it’s fair to say the field sizes have held up well. Jetoile is weighted to reverse form with Aucunrisque in the Novices’ Chase at 2:10 after a fine effort on his debut over fences last time and Petrossian looks very interesting in the concluding Maiden Hurdle at 5:05 which also sees Deere Mark, a son of Yorton Stud sire Pethers Moon, make his debut over timber for Walters Plant Hire, so we’ll definitely be cheering for him!
And the winner is…
Potter Group and James and Jean Potter Ltd are very proud to sponsor the drinks reception at the Welsh Horseracing Awards on November 3rd. It’s a fantastic event that celebrates and recognises everything Wales has to offer from a racing perspective and there are still a few tickets available so if you’d like to come along, please contact Mhiggs@chepstow-racecourse.co.uk who will be happy to help.
Keep your eyes peeled to all our social media platforms over the coming months where we’ll continue to provide updates on all our horses, including those based with Alan King, Nigel Twiston-Davies, Henry Daly, Neil Mulholland and Donald McCain.
Q- Why should you never be rude to a Jump Jockey?
A – In case they take offence……😂