The Royal family might be expecting a new baby in the early part of next year who will be fifth in line to "reign over us" while the heavy "rain" in America looks set to pop across the Atlantic and provide the UK with more of the wet stuff but it was the other “rein” that was under scrutiny this afternoon at Ripon racecourse when Mick Easterby asked me to take a look at his invention.
In short Mick’s “gadget “has caught the eye of the BHA who have discontinued its use for the time being in case it represents a danger to riders and horses. Obviously the BHA have a duty of care to ensure safety is paramount and it seems the “rein” the BHA didn’t like the look of was not the one Mick invented some ten or twelve years ago.
Of course when it comes to the safety and welfare of horses and jockeys and the training and preparing of horses for racing, there are few people better qualified to asses danger and deal efficiently, safely and professionally with the issues presented, than trainers and jockeys themselves, it is up to us to put our case forward to the BHA who are also only “doing their job”. Thankfully the BHA are eminently sensible when presented with the facts and, at the end of the day all of us want the same thing.
Mick asked me to meet him today so he could show George and I how it works because clearly an effective and safe piece of kit which prevents horses from diving under the front of starting stalls “has” to be advantageous, especially where jockeys safety is concerned .
My biggest surprise today when I saw “Micks gadget” was just how well made and professional it is, he really ought to patent it, anyone of us who knows and love “Spittin Mick” would have been expecting some kind of rope arrangement with bailing twine and bungees and a few nails thrown in for good measure, after all this is the man who ‘sold’ his beloved and infamous ancient jacket for charity, it was held together with chewing gum, sported frayed edges and had bits of old race cards dating back to prehistoric times.
However, we were met with the Easterby stalls rein, fitted to a racehorse - it is slick, simple to use, totally safe and entirely effective. In short, it is brilliant.
More on this soon…………………
In the meantime I was happy with “Gorse” who ran a respectable race to finish fourth, he is a little hot headed at times, but apart from giving Shane a bit of a tough time in the parade ring, he behaved impeccably and is getting the hang of this racing game nicely.