Thaw at last and Aintree weights
It’s been a quiet time of late with the frost and snow. No racing of note and none on turf for several weeks but at last the thaw has arrived and the end of this week promises to be extremely informative with many Cheltenham horses trying out for the rescheduled Newbury raceday on Friday. It is good that racecourses are able to reschedule lost days of special importance for jumping enthusiasts. West Lockinge does not have any runners at Newbury but we may have Loch Ba and High Kite at Sandown on the same day and hopefully there will be more horses appearing next week. They all seem fresh and well.
The lunch hosted by Aintree Racecourse and John Smith to announce the 2012 Grand National weights at the Savoy Hotel in London on Tuesday 14th February was a most interesting and enjoyable occasion. Calgary Bay has been allocated 11st 6lbs in the race which is a high weight – no horse carrying above 11st 5lbs has won the race since Red Rum in 1977 when he carried 11st 8lbs. Nevertheless, Calgary is a big strong horse and carried top weight to win the Sky Bet Chase at Doncaster last month. Don’t Push It carried 11st 5lbs in the National in 2010. The intention at this stage is definitely to run unless the ground too soft/heavy but he will have several other entries - one in the Festival Chase at Cheltenham and one in the Bowl Chase at Aintree.
Somersby remains on course for Cheltenham – either the Champion Chase or the Ryanair Chase. He seems to be in good form.
Added on: 15/02/2012