Ten Minutes that changed the Jumps Season

by Carine06 Cheltenham’s Open meeting is forever going to be recognised as something of a watershed moment in the jumps season. Three days of action at the spiritual home of national hunt racing, a point in the season that signals loud and proud, this is where it all gets a little bit more serious! From this point the reality of the Cheltenham Festival itself is more forward in the subconscious of every racing fan. The concluding afternoon of the Open meeting this year provided the most seismic ten minutes in jumps racing that we’ve witnessed in some considerable time. On opposite sides of the Irish Sea, we witnessed moments of monumental significance for two venerable equine superstars. Sprinter Sacre roared home at Cheltenham as boldly as ever he had done before to the sort of […]



Galway preparing for the Dermot Weld Show

Galway preparing for the Dermot Weld Show photo by  John Picken  There are certain things in sport that have come to be relied upon over the years. Rafael Nadal’s vice-like grip on the French Open tennis – the Spaniard had won nine times in ten years at Roland Garros prior to this year. Phil Taylor’s stranglehold on the World Matchplay Darts in Blackpool – a record of 11 wins since 2002 including seven straight from 2008 onwards. And Dermot Weld’s complete domination of the Galway Races. Nadal and Taylor have questions to answer with new young challengers coming to raise the bar but can anyone stop the ‘King of Ballybrit’? The name of DK Weld has adorned the top of the trainer’s table on a staggering 28 occasions to date and with the seven-day festival about to get […]

Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase

Bookmakers Betway have announced taking over the sponsorship of the Champion Chase for the next three years. Being the first major race sponsored by Betway, online betting on the Queen Mother Champion Chase tripled with Sprinters Sacre favourite to win. To our surprise Dodging Bullets beat the odds of 9/2, winning the Champion Chase in an epic race. Paul Nicholls, who is Dodging Bullets’ trainer, has explained he has had to learn a lot about the six year old, who faced a few problems, but those were overcome and he showed us what a top horse he is. The Queen Mother Champions Chase is the fourth race of the second day’s action at the Cheltenham Festival and is featured as the main race of the day. The race was formerly known as National Hunt Two Mile Champion Chase […]



Book Review – How’s Your Dad? by Mick Channon Jnr 1   Recently updated !

Book review – How’s Your Dad? by Mick Channon Jnr The title of Mick Channon Jnr’s debut book ‘How’s Your Dad?’ tells you what you need to know about the theme of this exploration of a relationship between father and son. Mick Jnr, as I am sure everyone knows, is the son of famous former England footballer turned racehorse trainer Mick Channon. While he’s benefited from that association Mick Jnr has clearly found it hard to forge his own identity and the shadow of his father and his father’s success has fallen long on his life. This book explores Mick Jnr’s struggle to make his own mark on the world and his difficult but sometimes amusing relationship with his father. I normally beat around the bush and arrive at my conclusion at the end of […]

Book Review – Just One More Smile by Diana Reynolds

Book review – Just One More Smile by Diana Reynolds Reviewed by – David Cormack Having grown up as a huge Lester Piggott fan I’d always thought he was the ultimate jockey, the greatest ever. But as I learned more about the history of racing the more I began to understand and become in awe of the achievements of Fred Archer. By the time of his death at only 29 years old he’d ridden 21 classic winners. By that age Lester had ridden only 8, a statistic that puts Archer’s precocious talent and dominance of Victorian racing into some context. Of course racing at that time was different in lots of ways. Horses were trained hard and jockeys had none of the modern-day aids to their trade such as motorways, helicopters, nutritionists, physiotherapists and the […]


Darren Goodbody’s Best Bets For Doncaster

CLUGSTON CONSTRUCTION MAY HILL STAKES (Group 2)   1m Str An interesting stat I have noticed for this race over the past five renewals is that four of the past five winners did not have an OR. This might not bear any influence on the outcome but it is interesting that one I have followed this season is Ralph Beckett’s ‘RICH LEGACY’ who was beaten favourite in the Prestige Stakes when behind Kilmah. There were three lengths between them that day, and it was a strange ride for Oisin Murphy as the horse looked to switch off in mid race, but rattled home weaving through traffic and nearly snatched third in the process. She is by Holy Roman Emperor who ran most of his races on Good ground, she will be encountering soft ground for the […]

Book review – Mr Darley’s Arabian by Christopher McGrath

Book review – Mr Darley’s Arabian by Christopher McGrath The premise of Christopher McGrath’s book Mr Darley’s Arabian is quite simple, but inspired. Through the twenty five generations that comprise the male line of the pedigree of that greatest of all modern racehorses, the mighty Frankel, it tells the story of each of the horses who link the Darley Arabian, one of three founding stallions of the thoroughbred breed, to Khaled Abdullah’s great champion. In doing so it also sets out to tell the history of the sport of racing itself, the events and the people that have defined it through three centuries. The first thing that is apparent is that the book has been meticulously researched. It is rich in detail and that detail continues relentlessly throughout the entirety of the book. This renders […]


Darren Goodbody’s Best Bets Saturday 20th August

IRISH THOROUGHBRED MARKETING GIMCRACK STAKES (Group 2)  6f   Eleven entries have held their ground for now despite the weather changing for the worse,with two days of rain the ground may possibly come up on just the good side of soft for Saturday’s racing.    I would like to think that a low draw is going to be more effective, and two that stand out are ‘Unabated‘ and ‘MUBTASIM‘ The former mentioned is trained by Marco Botti and both his runs have come at Newmarket this season. He looked more effective on the slower ground when he won well on race course debut when around the novice ranks. His second run was in a small field in a conditions contest when behind Godolphin’s Broken Stones, a horse who had already achieved a good third when behind […]