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Dec. 22, 2009, 01:11 AM
Severe weather is forcing a holiday racing shake-up. How far will it go?

The Long Walk Hurdle -- featuring Big Buck's and the popular Lough Derg will run at Newbury on Dec 29. Poor Lough Derg, he doesn't get to run at his favorite track.

The King George might be moved from Kempton on Boxing Day to Cheltenham on New Years Day.

The Times, Cheltenham waiting in wings should Kempton fall (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/racing/article6963349.ece)

Dec. 24, 2009, 08:43 PM
King George preview...... http://www.racingpost.com/media/media_centre.sd?view=rp&media_id=13095

On the Gallops, with notorious drug cheat Nicky Henderson

Drum, does drug cheat mean what I think it means?

Dec. 24, 2009, 09:19 PM
It was somewhat tongue in cheek.
Henderson received a three month ban and $70,000 fine (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/horseracing/5750967/Nicky-Henderson-case-reveals-ignorance-in-the-use-of--tranexamic-acid.html) for one of his horses testing positive for tranexamic acid, a substance legal in most, if not all, US racing jurisdictions.

Dec. 24, 2009, 09:19 PM
Interesting piece in the Guardian about Kauto Star and his relative low-profile:

Charismatic Kauto Star still lacks the mystique of Desert Orchid (http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2009/dec/23/kauto-star-desert-orchid)

Kauto, it seems, hasn't stolen the public's hearts:

Nicholls, who trains both Denman and Kauto Star, has hired a marketing specialist, Johnno Spence, to raise his operation's profile. Spence, who also works for the racecourse, says: "From a Kempton perspective we're having Kauto Star merchandise on the day and we need to market it as much as possible. With the non-racing public it's almost a case of educating them about this horse and explaining the story. Using the Desert Orchid comparison is a very good lift, and one of the ways we've sold it into, say, GQ magazine."

Dec. 24, 2009, 09:34 PM
It was somewhat tongue in cheek.
Henderson received a three month ban and $70,000 fine (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/horseracing/5750967/Nicky-Henderson-case-reveals-ignorance-in-the-use-of--tranexamic-acid.html) for one of his horses testing positive for tranexamic acid, a substance legal in most, if not all, US racing jurisdictions.

Gotcha thanks! Great vid, btw!

Dec. 24, 2009, 09:51 PM
Henderson received a three month ban and $70,000 fine for one of his horses testing positive for tranexamic acid...

And the horse in question was owned by the Queen.

Dec. 25, 2009, 05:46 PM
From Simon Barnes of the Times in his weekly column (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/racing/article6967959.ece):

Cheap horses know it. It’s an expression as old as racing, but it has a corollary. Great horses are conscious of their greatness. They use this inner certainty to oppress lesser horses, to impose their will on them, to inspire themselves to great things. And if you think that this is anthropomorphic twaddle you have (a) never read an ethology textbook, (b) never sat on a horse and (c) never watched Kauto Star.

You can put (c) right today because Kauto Star runs in the King George VI Chase at Kempton Park. He will be attempting his fourth victory in this race. If he does it, he will be level with Desert Orchid. If Kauto Star were as grey as Dessie, he, too, would be the nation’s pet. Kauto Star gives more subtle clues about what makes him different from the rest.

Unlike Dessie, Kauto Star is equally dominant at Cheltenham. If he wins today it will be four King Georges in a row; Dessie had a break. This is one of the greatest jumping horses ever; this is as great a piece of sport as you will have seen all year. Kauto Star is long odds-on, but watch those pretenders take their crack at him. This is a race all right.

And it looks like Kempton is go (http://www.racingpost.com/news/horse-racing/no-weather-worries-for-kemptons-king-george-day/666276/top/).

Dec. 26, 2009, 12:00 PM
Wasn't he just amazing!!!!!:D We had a big slog here today what with cleaning up the barn after broken pipes, but coming in to sit down with a cup of tea to warm us up and Kauto winning like that, well what a day!

By the way, they had covers on the track at Kempton to make sure it was in tip top shape. I believe Cheltenham has them as well. Not all tracks have them, but it definitely saved this meet.


Dec. 26, 2009, 01:18 PM
The replay (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xh0BKgmx0VM).

Poor Imperial Commander. What a rough day for him.

Kauto Star is just fantastic.

Dec. 29, 2009, 04:35 PM
Big Buck's takes the Long Walk Hurdle again. Karabak second and Diamond Harry in third.

Lough Derg fell at the fourth but AFAIK, he's okay.

Jan. 2, 2010, 09:22 PM
Top trainer Paul Nicholls (as in Kauto Star, Denman Big Buck's, Masterminded) is the interviewee in this weeks This Much I Know column in the Observer.

Paul Nicholls: This Much I Know (http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2010/jan/03/paul-nicholls-trainer-his-own-words)

Jan. 2, 2010, 10:09 PM
Is there an available replay anywhere?

Jan. 2, 2010, 10:17 PM
replay -- 2009 Long Walk Hurdle (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YSPVMggS7o)

Jan. 4, 2010, 06:55 PM
Two-time Champion Hurdle winner Hardy Eustace has been retired following his second-place finish at Punchestown on Dec 31. Hardy Eustace gave us some thrilling moments at Cheltenham in 2005 when he held off Harchibald and Brave Inca.

From the BBC (http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/horse_racing/8437112.stm):

Trainer Dessie Hughes opted to call time on the 13-year-old's career after the gelding finished second behind Footy Facts.

"The fact that he couldn't beat Footy Facts means he won't be able to compete in Grade Ones and there are no other races for him," said Hughes.

Owned by Laurence Byrne, Hardy Eustace won 15 of his 46 starts, including seven Grade Ones, amassing over £1m in prize money.

(Unfortunately, YouTube doesn't have his Champion Hurdle wins or I'd post a link.)

Jan. 14, 2010, 04:13 AM
The entries for the Cheltenham Gold Cup...

BBC: Kauto Star and Denman lead Gold Cup entries (http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/horse_racing/8456899.stm)

Another showdown between the two greats but the entry list includes some interesting names. Imperial Commander runs well at Cheltenham (and he's at 16-1 right now!). Mon Mome, the 100-1 Grand National champ, is also on the list. As is the young star Carruthers and the oft-injured Trabolgan, who won the RSA Chase in 2005 before disappearing for several seasons.

Paul Nicholls has 6 runners on the list.

Jan. 23, 2010, 02:43 PM
The lovely veteran Old Vic took the Peter Marsh Chase (http://www.racingpost.com/news/horse-racing/danny-cook-haydock-veteran-our-vic-grinds-out-peter-marsh-win/674526/top/) at Haydock today. Last year's 100-1 Grand National champion, Mon Mome, was fourth.

At Ascot, a big victory for the Paul Nicholls-trained Twist Magic in the Victor Chandler Chase (http://www.racingpost.com/news/horse-racing/petit-robin-p-f-nicholls-ascot-twist-magic-destroys-rivals-in-victor-chandler/674499/top/).