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Horse Racing – The Impact Of The Swings In Temperature

Written by James Given

As far as horse racing goes, it was a brilliant finish to last weekend’s Grand National and a remarkable post race interview with Davy Russell who, at the time of one of the greatest moments of his life, thought about the misfortune of another. It was such a generous gesture to be thinking of Pat Smullen at a time many would be revelling in having won a Grand National. It was great news that there were no serious injuries or casualties, either equine or human, and the great race delivered another exciting edition.

Tiger Roll was highlighted as one to bet on by Team Given, but for fear of down playing the hard work of my colleague who generates the tips, I have found an easier way of finding the winner of the National. Every year we have a sweepstake in the yard and I have always bought my god-daughter a ticket. She is 8 years old and has won it an extraordinary 4 times! Although I am not a mathematician or really understand what a level stakes profit is, I imagine that if you bet blind whichever horse that had been picked out for her over the last 8 years, you would be more than comfortably ahead! Perhaps someone could tell me what the profit is? I will let you know which horse she has next year!

The Impact Of Temperature Swings On Horse Racing

Horse Racing At CheltenhamThe switch around in weather is having a positive effect on everything living in the yard, the grass is growing, the horses are blooming and all the humans are thoroughly enjoying the sunshine. It also had an impact at Cheltenham yesterday where the three mile two furlong chase was abandoned as some runners in previous races had been found to be suffering with heat stress after finishing. The temperature had risen to 25C and while jump racing has, I’m sure, taken place at that temperature before, I suspect that it is the speed of change from near freezing to way above normal in only a matter of a few days that has caught some, if not all the, horses out. They have not had the time to adapt to the higher temperatures, for instance, despite being clipped, I imagine that many have not had a chance to start shedding their winter coats. The horses are being asked to compete at the maximum of their capacity and endurance. Their ability to cope with conditions will vary as they are able to adapt.

While I can understand the frustration of some who have been reported as not agreeing with the decision to abandon this race, I am surprised that they are ultimately being critical of the Veterinary advice to the stewards, with whom the decision to abandon rests. It does seem to me an attitude of yesteryear and not one in keeping with more modern considerations for welfare. I was also a bit disappointed to read in the Racing Post a suggestion that the decision was taken out of fear of supplying fuel to those opposed to racing in general. If it is the right decision, it is the right decision irrespective of what it might do for the antis. Racing should not pander to the antis, absolutely, but it must do what is right by the horse. This is a judgement that clearly not everyone will agree with and it is impossible to know what would have happened if they had allowed the race to go ahead, but it was clearly thought that the risks were too high.

The 2yo’s Are Coming To Hand

We galloped some two year olds out of the stalls today and we are all pleased with how they are shaping up. It finally feels like the season is starting and all those dreams of the winter are going to be realised, or bought back to ground. Not only is everyone here lifted by the improved weather but there is a definite quickening of the pulse as the horses are now coming to hand and we are beginning to get clues as to what our two year olds could be. Bring it on!

Don’t forget, if you would like to get involved with Team Given, make sure you visit out Membership page to check out the options – Click here Team Given Membership

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