In this frustratingly delayed season, we have had some new recruits to the yard in recent weeks, but we have also sadly had to retire one of our old stalwarts.
Hope Is High (pictured winning at Bath last September) bows out with an admirable record of six wins and 11 places from her 31 starts for the stable (and 34 races in total). She arrived here early in her three-year-old season with three juvenile starts under her belt, and since the moment she arrived she just did everything right. Easy to train, sound of mind and limb, she was certainly a good buy for just 800 guineas and we will miss her terribly. She made just one start this season and had been training well, but a few weeks ago she was found to be lame behind after exercise so we decided to call time on her racing career and give her a proper break before motherhood beckons. We will look forward to the arrival of her offspring in the stable in the years to come, but they have an awful lot to live up to.
The new recruits to the yard are Sylvia Plath, a Godolphin-bred daughter of Poet’s Voice who is unraced but was previously in training with Michael Halford in Ireland. The Tunmore family bought a very nice son of Rock Of Gibraltar at the recent breeze-up sale and we were delighted to welcome him to the stable on Friday. He is unnamed as yet but is from the family of Mount Nelson and Reference Point and looks a lovely prospect for next season and beyond, though hopefully he will be ready to make his debut this autumn.
We are also delighted to welcome to the stable two new owners, the great friends Jon McArthur and Bob Nastanovich, who will hopefully have some fun this year (and for seasons to come) racing Dear Alix in partnership with Emma. A giant 17.2hh five-year-old, ‘Alix’ will, we hope, be making his bumper debut later this jumps season.