Monday, which was a bank holiday in the UK. We start at Cartmel where there was another winner for Neil Mulholland as his horse Minella definitely saw off our members selection Fantasy King ( 1pt each way 7/1) .The Mulholland string are in excellent form. There was a winner for Philip Hobbs and Richard Johnson as Thomas Wild followed up his recent Stratford win with a 3 length victory here. Allbarnone took the concluding handicap hurdle, I thought Volcanic and General Mahler ran good races in behind and are horses to note. The card at Ballinrobe was a good one as it nearly always is nowadays. There was a milestone as Jack Kennedy rode out his claiming allowance while winning on Troublesombrothers. Glenns Harmony was a hugely impressive winner of the bumper by fifteen lengths for Willie and Patrick Mullins.The feature race the mares handicap hurdle went to The Nutcracker who was winning this race for the second consecutive year. The Nutcracker held off Isabella Liberty by a half length. The victory of The Nutcracker was good news for our members who had a (1pt each way bet at 9/1) .This was coupled with a 0.5pt each way double with (The Nutcracker 9/1 and Fantasy King 7/1)made it a great day for our members.
At Huntingdon there was another Alan King with Millie Nautique who won by 13 lengths. There was a double for Nicky Henderson Nicolas Chauvin and Vailant Nonantais. At Leicester there was a double for Roger Varian with Pretty Vacant and Taneen. At Redcar the Zetland gold cup went for the second year in succession as Revoulotionist won by a length and a quarter. At ,Windsor Master Of Irony won the one mile two furlongs handicap in impressive fashion by three and a half length for Ralph Beckett and Oisin Murphy.
Tuesday, we start at Redcar . The median auction maiden stakes produced a good winner in Guy Fawkes who ran out a very impressive 3 length winner for William Haggas. Guy Fawkes was eased right down so he was value for much further a horse to watch. The five furlong handicap so a real tight finish as the strong travelling Fredricka just held off Lexington Place and Bashiba. The three of them should pay there way this season. The ground was on the quick side but two of the star trainers of the winter had winners.Kerry Lee saddled Aces Over Eights to win the two mile handicap chase by two lengths. Neil Mulholland has his stable in fine form , Mrs Burbridge picked up the mares handicap hurdle by 3 lengths to keep the fine run going. At Lingfield, Tenzing Norgay won the 1 miles 4 furlong handicap, as Sir Mark Prescott looks to have a horse who could run a sequence in handicaps. At Wolverhampton there was a double for Richard Kingscote with Stonecutter and Dutch Archer. At Ballinrobe there was a treble for Gordon Elliott with Carrig Cathal, Tiger Roll and Sanibel Island. There was a right touch landed by Charles Byrnes as Shanpallas took the 2 miles 4 furlongs handicap hurdle. The Mayo grand national saw a 1-2 for Aidan O'Brien as King Leon saw off Carriganog.
Wednesday, we start at Cartmel where Gordon Elliott and Richard Johnson were at it again. The mares maiden hurdle went to Tullyglush by a short head for the Johnson/ Elliott combination. At Fontwell, the Paul Nicholls trained El Bandit did the business again his third win on the spin . The margin was nine lengths El Bandit is a decent horse for this time of the year.The Novice chase went Pass the time another winner for Neil Mulholland who has horses in great order. At Nottingham there was a double for Oisin Murphy with Bletchly and Elbereth. Sir Michael Stoute like to have a winner at Nottingham he got his winner here with Aristocles who held the rallying Scarpeta by a half length. At Chelmsford , Bowson Fred followed up his recent Musselburgh win to take the five furlong handicap by 2 lengths he is in good form right now. Bowson Fred may well be capable of striking again soon. There was nothing of note at Ripon.
Punchestown hosted a decent card there was a treble for Willie Mullins on the card Aleichi Inois who had been a promising horse was on the comeback trail here and won the 2 miles 6 furlongs conditions race. Aleichi Inois remains a horse with lots of potential, Saddlers risk ran well in second the Galway plate could be ideal for that horse. The second leg of the Mullins treble came with Bamako Moriviere who won the 2 mile handicap hurdle dictating from the front to run out a comfortable winner. Bamako Moriviere served notice at the Punchestown Festival that his time was coming. The victory of Bamako Moriviere was good news for our members who had (a 1pt each way bet 6/1 R4 10%). I thought Princely Conn ran well in second. The bumper also went to Mullins as Wishmoor won by 8 lengths he looks a decent prospect for hurdling. The good run of Jessica Harrington also continued at Punchestown as Mr Fiftyone won the 2 miles 2 furlongs chase landing some nice bets (7/2 -2/1). Devils bride did well to get so close having made mistakes, this horse will win a race soon.
Thursday, we start at Hamilton the 1 mile handicap went to Red Charmer who was impressive beating British Embassy by three and a half lengths. I think Red Charmer can win again for Ann Duffield. There was a double for Andrea Atzeni at Lingfield with Golden Slam and Talent to amuse. At Ripon there was a treble for David O'Meara with Fayez, Treasury Notes and Kip. The same card at Ripon saw a double for Keith Dalgleish with Mr Grumpy and Corton Lad. The Dalgleish team are having a great season. At Ffos las the mares novice hurdle went to Miss Crick who was impressive and yet another winner for Alan King. At Kempton there was a double for Sylvester De Sousa with Wimpole Hall and Mutamaid. At Fairyhouse there was a good win for Footbridge who clearly likes fast ground, Footbridge ran out the winner by a length and a quarter it was five and a half lengths back to the third horse. The one mile two furlongs apprentice handicap went to Elusive in Paris who is in very good form running out a very impressive four length winner. I think Elusive in Paris can win again.
Friday, We start at Epsom where it was Oaks day. The feature race saw Minding go off a warm favorite at 10/11. Minding had a troubled passage but once she got out into the clear , Minding put the race to bed in emphatic fashion winning by a length and 3 quarters from Architecture. The margin back to Harlequeen in third was a further 8 lengths with another 14 lengths back to the fourth horse Somehow. The fact is Minding is clearly a very special filly, it will be interesting if Coolmore would consider the Arc in my view whichever way you read it this was a top class performance. The rest of Epsom was a mixed bag with Imshivalla springing a 25/1 surprise in the 1 mile 2 furlong handicap. I was disappointed with the run of Dark Red who I thought was better then this. The seven furlong handicap went to King's Pavillion for Mark Johnston who held Stamp Hill off by a half length.
At Catterick, there was a treble for Richard Fahey with Queen Kindly, Invermere and Luis vaz de torres. At Market Rasen, Forever Field won the handicap hurdle for Nicky Henderson who has his horses in good form. At Bath, Fran Berry had a treble with Koptoon, Desert Cross and Saint Helena who was most impressive in the one mile handicap. There was a rare 25/1 for Sir Michael Stoute with El Hayem at Doncaster. At Goodwood ,Charlie Appleby had a double with Boynton and Manaboo. At Leopardstown , there was a remarkable five timer for Aidan O'Brien. The horses were Ware Decree, Cockatoo Island, Udogo, The Major General and of course Order Of St George who took the Saval Beg stakes in advance of a tilt at the Ascot Gold Cup by 4 and a half lengths. At Tramore there was a comeback winner for Ruby Walsh with Muthaza who won the mares maiden hurdle for Willie Mullins.
Saturday, we start at Epsom where it was Derby day. The race turned out to be a triumph for Irish racing . The Derby was won by Harzand who was well backed on the day (10/1 to 13/2). Harzand committed for home two furlongs out holding off the determined challenge of Us army ranger and Idaho by one and a half lengths and 1 and a quarter lengths respectively. Harzand was remarkably the first Epsom derby winner for Dermot Weld and Pat Smullen which I think everyone would agree was richly deserved. Aidan O' Brien was second and third his horses ran the best races they could in my view. I was bitterly disappointed with Moonlight magic who ran way too bad to be true. I noted Jim Bolger's comments in relation to Moonlight magic and Oaks flop Turret Rocks. "They are two very nice prospects and I'll be very surprised if we don't get them back." however Moonlight magic will have to up his run here drastically. The rest of the Epsom card was of interest . The Queen Elizabeth Stakes a group 3 went to the appropriately named Epsom Icon who was a decisive three and a half lengths winner from the 1/2 fav Sayana who appeared to hate Epsom. The Coronation cup a group 1 went in very impressive style to Postponed who beat by four and half lengths. This was excellent from Postponed. The Epsom dash a race I love I have to admit, this was a great race with former winner Caspian Prince holding off Kimbrella by a short head with Duke of firenze a length and 3 quarters back in third. The first four horses were drawn 17,19,20 and 18 a trend that pops up time after time.
At Doncaster there was a dead heat between Evenlode and Futoon in the five furlong maiden. At Hexham, Keltus was an impressive winner of the novice chase winning by 5 lengths. The two mile handicap hurdle went in very impressive fashion to Dynamic Drive who ran out a five length winner from Roll of Thunder. At Musselburgh ,David Pipe sent talented handicap hurdler up for the 1 mile 6 furlong apprentice handicap. It took Impulsive American to warm to his task but once he did he put the race away comprehensively by 3 and a half lengths. Impulsive American will get another of these staying races. At Worcester, The Tourad Man got off the mark over fences beating Ruddy Article who ran really well by just under 2 lengths. The Tourad man is in great form right now. The 2 mile 4 furlong handicap hurdle went Castlemorris king who just held on by a ever diminishing neck for David Pipe. The Pipe team had claimed this horse for £10,000 recently. There was nothing of note at Lingfield. At Newcastle there was a third win in three weeks for Roy's Legacy who is in top form right now mixing turf and all weather. The card at Tramore was very moderate I saw nothing of interest there to be honest. At the Curragh, Mick Channon sent over Devine who easily put away Fort Del Oro and Only mine in the group 3 Ballyogan stakes. The listed Silver stakes went to Portage who has always had ability. It was another bad run from Sir Isaac Newton in third he looks regressive. There was a double for Jim Bolger with Qatari Hunter who will surely be turned out soon under a penalty such was the ease of the victory. The other leg was Stellar Mass who finally got in front in a maiden after being very consistent.
Sunday, at Listowel there was a dead heat between Fox dream and Mr Adjudicator in the auction maiden. There was a double for Michael Halford with Suvenna and Ashbury Boss. At Kilbeggan, Whatever it takes took the handicap hurdle for Niall Madden. The beginners chase went to All hell let loose by 8 lengths , Henry De Bromhead who got this horse from Gigginstown recently. Down Under won the three mile handicap chase for the second successive year by nine and a half lengths. At Perth ,there were winners for Paul Nicholls with Rainy city and Gordon Elliott with Bingo Conti. At Goodwood, there was a double for Mick Channon and Sylvester De Sousa with Billy's boots and Arnold Lane.