Only Cheltenham and it's band of many thousands of real, honest and genuine racing fans can invoke such emotion. Practically every race, every owner, trainer, jockey and most certainly every horse, has it's own story to tell, almost all have had to overcome difficulties of one kind or another which, at the end of the day is usually why they have the ability, stamina and determination to compete and win at Cheltenham. Yesterday the great chaser, "Sprinter Sacre" bought the house down and a tear to many eyes in the process. What a horse, and what a story. It was not that long ago he was considered by many as a spent force. Sprinter Sacre on the other hand, had his own ideas about that.
He was simply electrifying, fantastic and scences like those we saw yesterday remind me of the absolute irony of the so called 'animal welfare' mob who campaign to have jump racing banned on the grounds of its "cruelty". You only need to look at the horses and the people involved in their training and care, to know just how much love, care and attention these horses get day in, day out. The financial aspect is clear too, over 20 million pounds in the last ten years or thereabouts has been spent, by racing professionals in the quest for more advanced veterinary research which is then made available to the great advantage by every vet in the country, ultimately benefiting every horse or pony.
At home, our extensive CCTV underwent a service, the horses have enjoyed a day relaxing after their vaccinations yesterday, all the horses had their tails washed, manes pulled where needed, and generally underwent some smartening up. The water in the treadmill was changed again and lots of odd jobs were done on the yard. I spent much of the day in the office catching up with paperwork which I don't like doing at the best of times but, being able to watch Cheltenham in the afternoon at the same time was a big bonus.