PAT HEALY: Pat starts this week blog by extending his best wishes to Graham Lee after his fall at Newcastle on Friday.
Thinking of Graham Lee
First and foremost our thoughts go out to Graham Lee, to his family and friends. It’s a tragedy for such a thing to happen. We know there’s always danger in this game, but when it comes around it’s always a shock.
Graham is such a likable man, great craic and always a great laugh. Please God, he’ll pull through, even if he never rides again, we’ll be able to see him at the races. We’re thinking of him.
Gordon Elliott on fire at Down Royal
The weekend belonged to Gordon Elliott, with 11 winners across the two days at Down Royal and a further two at Gowran Park on Saturday, making it 13 in two days. What a performance from the trainer and his staff.
The Champion Chase at Down Royal was a fantastic race which provided a brilliant finish with Gerri Colombe getting back up to win. Envoi Allen and Conflated both lost nothing in defeat of course. It continued the fine run for owner Robcour after Gentlemansgame won the Charlie Hall at Wetherby the weekend before.
Point-to-Pointers to watch out for
We always like to keep an eye out for the four-year-old pointers. There was a point-to-point in Dromahane last Sunday where the mares’ four-year-old race was won by Northern Air, who is trained by Garrett Murphy. She’s by a stallion called Vendangeur, who stands at Anngrove Stud in County Laois. She’s now off to the sales – probably at Cheltenham this weekend – and it will be interesting to see how she gets on.
The geldings’ four-year-old on the same card was won by that man Gordon Elliott with a horse called Patter Merchant. I’m sure he’ll be sold but stay in the yard after his performance on Sunday.
Over in County Wexford at Knockmullen House, the mares’ four-year-old was won by Wednesday Addams, who is by Telescope and trained by Colin Bowe. The geldings’ four-year-old was won by Arctic Lane for in-form trainer Declan Queally. Declan is banging in the winners on the track and in point-to-points too at the minute.
With the Cheltenham Sales taking place this weekend after racing from the November meeting it will be interesting to see how the market is holding up and what these four-year-olds are making.
Tattersalls foal sales
The foal sales are on here at Tattersalls Ireland. Anything that’s by Blue Bresil, who is of course the sire of Constitution Hill, is very popular as are foals by Walk In The Park, with the last few seasons that he’s had.
Of the new stallions on the block, foals by Poet’s Word are doing very well along with progeny of Golden Horn.