After telling you last week about how hard the team had worked during the 'Beast from the East' to keep the horses in top shape, we were duly rewarded with a memorable day at Southwell on Tuesday.
Neither Go On Gal nor Limerick Lord were remotely fancied by the bookies as they were sent off at double figure odds and I can't say that I thought they would win but (as you could have read in last week's blog) I thought they had a chance of getting a place if in the mood.
Thankfully not just one but both of them were in the right mood and came away with a victory each.
Go On Gal was given a lovely ride by Shelley to nip up the inside turning for home which saved her a few lengths and proved decisive as she only won by a head. The mare and her owners deserved this win as she is so consistent but is forever in a battle with the handicapper. Both her wins have now come at Southwell and there aren't many races left for her there this winter but she has run well on the turf plenty of times so will likely give her gang more fun days out this summer.
It is no secret that Limerick Lord is a bit of a monkey and whether he runs well depends on what side of the bed he got out of but it must have been the best side this time as he showed a great attitude to get his first win in over two years. Owner Steve Clarke has never lost faith in him and enjoys being his owner as he usually gives him a run for his money but has found winning hard. He battled bravely this time and, you never know, this might do his confidence the world of good and he is rated low enough to win again even after a rise in the weights for this success.
We had some good results back at the track two days later as our three runners there on Thursday all finished third.
None were particularly fancied to win but Maazel was probably our best chance and he wasn't beaten far when finishing fast to fill the third spot. He is coming down to a good handicap mark now and is getting back to top form. He is entered at Chelmsford on Thursday and will head there, providing he has fully recovered. He will be dropping back to six furlongs but he has decent form over that trip and the cheekpieces seemed to sharpen him up this time so we'll leave them on.
Oceanus ran a blinder in an extremely competitive race to finish third too and he won't be waiting long to win again whilst Sir Fred showed great improvement from his debut to fill the same spot.
We have another handful of entries this week and hopefully the good form can continue.
It's well known that we don't really like running horses at Chelmsford as we're never very lucky there but sometimes the only suitable races are there, as is the case with Spirit Of Sarwan on Monday. He would have had a big chance at Lingfield last time before it got abandoned because of the snow so we've had to come here. He is on a winnable rating now and I've put the cheekpieces on him to wake him up as he can race lazily. It's a big unknown whether he will like the track as the kickback is terrible there at the moment but I hope he can run a good race.
Majestic Moon has been hard to fault this winter at Southwell with form figures of 43212 and he goes back there on Wednesday after a short break. There weren't any races for him at the course for a while so he's had some time to freshen up and he has come back in great order. He is probably best at a mile so the 7f trip isn't perfect but he should be able to cope with it and the rise in class to give his owners another bit of fun.
Rounding off the runners will be the previously mentioned Maazel on Thursday at Chelmsford, along with Candesta who got into a terrible position at Wolverhampton last week and never got involved. He is much better than that so should be in the shake-up if getting a handy position this time.
Sorry for getting your hopes up last week but the 'Four To Follow' Competition launch has been put back to next weekend as the fine details of it are finalised. It will be worth the wait!
In the meantime, the spring edition of the Harraton Herald will be hitting your inboxes this week so don't miss it! You can subscribe to receive it via the form on our HOMEPAGE.