14th November news

Couple of mares head over to Ayr on Wednesday

It probably takes longer than you'd think when we take horses to Ayr racecourse, but the track is such a fair, galloping course that it's always a pleasure to visit. Plus the excellent lunch for owners and trainers!

Two of our mares are entered tomorrow, and in racecard order first up is Side of the Road in the 2½ mile maiden hurdle at 1 o'clock where she is one of 11 runners. Her form to date is fairly modest and we're under no illusions that her future lies in handicap hurdles. A number of her opponents have run well over hurdles with the Crawford Bros' Victoria Says maybe just the pick. But it'll be Nicky R's dual bumper winner Uncle Alastair that will attract the most attention, although the horse he just beat in the second of those victories - Ewart's Dunly - re-opposes here. Both stables are going well, and this is quite a competitive heat all things considered. And Jennie Candlish's Quick Pick wont be far away.

Hawick born jockey Kieron Edgar is now based with Harry Fry but was up here on Sunday / Monday to ride a couple for Brother Ali. And Kieron popped into Dodlands on Sunday morning to help Callum school Side of the Road and Paper Roses. Both mares pleased in the session, just hope they take that onto the racecourse.......

To finish off the preview for Side of the Road, we'd be looking for a nice, clean jumping round and she should come on for the race.

Side of the Road (on the right with Stuart)

Paper Roses is a second season hurdler and has some fair bumper placed and hurdle placed form to her name. She runs off a BHA rating of 112 tomorrow in the mares' handicap hurdle also over 2½ miles. She's quite an athletic mare, and doesn't take long to work off any condition that she carried when coming back in from summer grass. That said, she might appear to be a bit fitter than she actually is, as we do work carefully with the mare to build up her strength.

Looking at the adjusted Racing Post Ratings (RPR) for this handicap, it shows half a dozen opponents who are rated higher which gives an idea of the size of task facing Paper Roses on her first race of the season. Our horses all seem to have needed the run, but again we'd hope for a nice jumping round and will be giving it her best if in with a chance 2 out.

Callum takes the ride on both horses, and good luck to The Smiths (Ron & Eileen of course) and Ian Aitken - enjoy the day win, lose or draw.

Niamh Summer gallop
Paper Roses (Sarah, looking moody)

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