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Patience Pays Off

It was brilliant to see Nellie French break her maiden tag at Wolverhampton on Friday night. We headed down with high hopes on Tuesday but the decision to ride her handier in the race back fired and although she ran ok to finish 6th she never really settled in to the race and wasted energy in the middle. Phillip Dennis was in the saddle on both occasions and his feedback was great. The change of tactics on Friday seen her ridden cold with a late delivery to surge clear and win by a going away 1 1/4 lengths. I would like to think she will continue to improve now we have her sussed out.

It hasn’t been an easy 12 months with Nellie French and it has taken some patience to reach the winners enclosure. She arrived in the yard just over a year ago with the plan that she would replace a horse we had sadly lost to colic. She was a basement cost buy at around £1200 and we gave her three runs at Newcastle where she showed a little promise and looked like she may be a bit of fun once handicapping. She enjoyed a break over lockdown and came back in to work ready to race in the backend. Her first run back saw her badly hampered at Ayr, twice she was declared at Hamilton when it was abandoned then she was a NR at Newcastle one day as she had a haematoma under her stomach. When we finally got back to the racetrack at Hamilton she ran poorly and blew hard post race which was a head scratcher until 48 hours later when she showed symptoms of having a virus. It took a long time to get her back to health, medication helps but rest and patience is the key for horses that are recovering from a respiratory virus. Following her return to fitness it has probably taken us the last few runs to really learn how to ride her, so I’m sure you can all understand why this winner was extra sweet.

Our other runner this week was Spartakos who was a little too enthusiastic at Wolverhampton on Tuesday, lack of cover meant he ran a bit too fresh and didn’t quite see out the 7f. Good to have gotten a run under his belt and he will definitely improve both physically and mentally for the outing.

The weather has been causing havoc for trainers all over the UK this month and it’s starting to get very frustrating with the week ahead not looking any more promising. Our AW surface has stood up well and a couple of trips down to Newcastle has kept the team fit and happy but we are really ready to be out of the worst of winter. We intended to have runners at both Kelso and Newcastle both of which succumbed to the weather, Crystal Lad is declared to run at Sedgefield tomorrow and they inspect at 2.30 today.

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