Dinnie’s Vinnie At Thurles
I was delighted to get a winner on Dinnie’s Vinnie last week in Thurles. After having a very disappointing run in Fairyhouse before heading to Thurles it was a nice repayment for his owners who wanted to give him another run. He is a funny horse and can put in a bad run when you would except him to go well. His owners, the TFC syndicate, are great owners and dedicated supporters of racing attending every local race meeting rain, hail or snow.
The syndicate is made up of the Beattie family, headed by their mother, Mrs Beattie, whose husband the late Tommy had a lifelong interest in racing and had horses in training with Arthur Moore. He passed this love on to his sons Clive and Frank. Ironically, Dad was nursing a broken wrist on the day which he got from Dinnie’s Vinnie when he ducked from under him a few weeks ago. In fairness to the horse, Dad’s reflexes probably aren’t as quick as they used to be (or so we keep telling him)!
Top Class Irish Point To Point Horses
Last week seen a new record price received for an Irish point to point horse, with Flemenshill being sold at Tattersalls Ireland Cheltenham January sale for £480,000. The Flemensfirth gelding, who made his debut in February for trainer Colin McKeever opened at £250,000 and the hammer fell on a final bid to Tom Malone and Colin and Joe Tizzard. The sale seen record breaking results with other point to point winners being knocked down at substantial prices. The high prices reflect the high quality of horses that come from the Irish point to point scene. It is great to see and as I mentioned before, some of the top-class horses have started their career off in a point to point field.
Dad and I have a nice horse who finished second in a point to point in Punchestown earlier in the month. Unfortunately, he ran into one better on the day in the form of Gallahers Cross, who was an impressive winner. Our horse, Double You Bee, will run in another point to point tomorrow in Armagh. Jamie Codd, who rode him the last time, will ride him again and we hope he will go well.
Rides At Fairyhouse & Naas This Weekend
Racing comes from Fairyhouse tomorrow where I have one ride. Routes Choice trained by Dad and owned by Louise Austin runs in the Irish Stallion Farms European Breeders Fund Beginners Steeplechase. This will be her third run fences, having had two decent runs in Fairyhouse and Thurles. She is a horse who needed plenty of schooling at home before moving to the bigger obstacle and is still getting the hang of them. It looks to be a competitive race tomorrow, however, her previous two runs have been promising so we hope she will continue to improve and she looks a nice prospect for handicapping later in the Spring.
On Sunday racing takes place in Naas where I ride Smokey Joe Joe for Stephen Mahon. I won on this horse in Limerick over Christmas which was his most recent run. Tomorrow’s contest is a competitive one taking on the likes of Gordon Elliott’s Clarcam, however, I am looking forward to riding Smokey Joe Joe again and riding in a Grade Three.
With Cheltenham just around the corner, the disappointing news broke this week that Thistlecrack has become the latest high profile star set to miss out in the festival. The Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup favourite was ruled out of this year’s festival due to a tendon injury, which would have been a major blow to his connections. It is hard to walk out any morning or evening and find heat in a horse’s leg so it must be devastating to discover it in a horse like Thistlecrack. However, there may still be consolation for Colin Tizzard and the team as he is responsible for the top two horses in the betting in this year’s Gold Cup, Native River and Cue Card.