Friday, July 8, 2016

An Angry Stop Press

Suddenly we're back to two horses actually doing anything in Japan again, as Trovao has been withdrawn from the JDD and will be sent to Northern Farm - a move that puts the horse's career at an end as far as I'm concerned, and certainly ends any chance of revenge for the Tokyo Derby disgrace brought about by JRA interlopers. Now all I'm left with is two mediocre runners out of 18 Japanese nags that include an ex-G1 horse, an ex-S1 horse and several multiple winners, all successfully transformed into donkeys. Disgraceful situation! Basically, Japanese racing has nothing whatsoever to do with racing - it's all just a huge scam to make 'the boys' money at enthusiasts' expense. As soon as the Carrot Club catalogue arrives, I will burn it along with all the Shadai ones in a special ceremony to mark the end of my involvement in this ridiculous farce. I've seen less bullshit in a field full of cows...

PS. Once more, the contrast between Japan and the UK couldn't be stronger, with Sayesse just missing out on a top three spot at Ascot under Charlie Bishop, finishing one length down on the winner. Masterson should make his jumps debut at Stratford on Sunday, and then more action is promised for the following week with Lillyput and Ettie Hart out again. 

PPS. Masterson was a little out of his depth in his jumps debut, with the two-mile distance taking its toll at the end. Still, having watched the video, the sixth place he picked up showed a lot of heart. The future will be interesting with this one, regardless of whether a flat career is resumed or a stronger move towards jumps is made.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

A Lot Of Hart

Ettie Hart was allowed to run bravely at Brighton under Charles Bishop, but was pipped at the end to come fourth. What an exciting race it was, though, and we have a lot more English racing to come yet this week, despite having only six horses in training...

In complete contrast, we have just Trovao and Shine Tiara able to run from no less than 18 horses in Japan. I've been asked the question "why so many?" before, and it's easy enough to answer - if you don't have quite a few, you never see any action out here. Now, even with 11 NAR nags amongst them that usually run every month, I'm still not seeing any action. Had it not been for Oak Park (a special event for JLH Racing, which put a couple of races on hold), I'd have seen as many entries from the two Aussie horses as I've seen from the 18 here over the last couple of months! It really is an unacceptable situation, and I'm afraid it has put me off Japanese racing for good. Far too many full-blown injuries, too many niggles and slight injuries that cause seemingly endless delays, far too many unnecessary holidays, far too many excuses for failure whenever they do hit the track (it does happen occasionally), and way too much expense for no return of any kind, not even pleasure.

PS. Looks like War Chronicle has made it to Hakodate, meaning - wait for it - we may have three out of 18 Japanese horses actually doing something, including one JRA nag, and two NAR ones; more trouble for Rush Attack, by the way, although not surprised, as there always seems to be more injuries made at NF than cured. Meanwhile, Lillyput was sixth in an incredibly fast sprint at Bath (in England), her strong run deserving a better place at the end of the day.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Where's The Brillo Pad?

After a vaguely pleasing run (not brilliant, but certainly a damned sight better than the last few outings), Shine Tiara was fifth on the 4th at Kawasaki, the pot for which just about covers a week and a bit of running costs on that one, and naturally doesn't touch the costs of the 16 Japanese nags doing absolutely nothing! Our only other runner is Trovao, scheduled to run on the 13th in the Japan Dirt Derby; Fumio Matoba is taking over the reins for that race, which makes Louis happy (Matoba-san being his favourite jockey), although I do feel sorry for Mar-kun myself. Anyway, fingers crossed, for it's basically our only hope. In fact, Trovao is literally our only hope in Japan right now.

PS. The post-race report on Shine Tiara was fair, and let's hope the horse can get out again at the end of the month - I need one to start paying for itself! At least it looked a lot more like a racehorse than it did during the last three outings, so maybe there's a bit of hope in this one, too? Maybe.