THE BLOODSTOCK BLOGGER - AS SEEN ON THE GAITPOST
This blog is slightly delayed, mainly due the fact that I couldn’t bring myself to talk about the yearlings just in case I jinxed them getting to the sales. Luckily the news is good and all three yearlings made it and have found new homes, writes Sophie Buckley.
It was not without lots of stress and I felt like I didn’t sleep for about two weeks before the Book II Sales at Tattersalls. I would not describe myself as somebody who has OCD but for those couple of weeks I think I gave OCD a trial, which was probably less than pleasant for everybody around me.
It was a great feeling loading them up to take them to the sales but there is still plenty of work to be done when you get there. There were lots of early starts with each of the yearlings being hand walked at 5am. Tattersalls at 5am is like watching DIY SOS. People, horses and mess everywhere and it has all totally disappeared by 7.30am with gleaming horses, raked walkways and maybe just a few bleary eyed stable lads showing a hint of the previous night’s escapades, giving away what had gone before.
Of course, the main aim of the game is to come home with a profit but when you are doing something for the first time you are never quite sure what to expect. I liked the horses but there is no perfect horse and two of them had a very interrupted preparation so were not looking as strong as I would have liked. Overall it was a great experience but what really made it was all the help and support that I received. There were lots of tips and advice and it really showed that although everybody is busy doing their own thing, they still have the time to wish somebody else well, which in today’s world is very refreshing.
Both Speedy and Gonzo made a good profit and Quick made a small loss. Overall it produced a good return on investment after costs so it was a great start. There always has to be a first time for everything but I am pleased to get this first time out of the way.
I am excited going forward to next year to see if I can improve. It was sad saying goodbye to them and I would be lying if I said that I didn’t shed a small tear. I knew they would be sold when I bought them but it is hard not to form some sort of attachment. I also care what happens to them and you are sending them into another unknown. I’m sure over the years I will harden up but hopefully not too much!
The show horses are currently looking more like hairy monsters than champions and although I can’t bear seeing them look such a mess they have a relaxed air about them. Let’s face it, a holiday is good for us all and I haven’t missed riding them one bit. I’m sure if they could speak they would say the same!
Both horses and humans need down time to switch off and hopefully come back with renewed enthusiasm. I have warned them both that they need to up their game for next year. Mimic’s aim is to win some novice workers and Prof’s is to jump some open workers. Much to my husband’s dismay this means that I will have to do some showjumping this winter to ensure that both horses, and more importantly the rider, have plenty of clear rounds under our belt. When he said, is this really necessary, he received the reply of, Yes, if you want to win!
Meanwhile, at home the farm is awash with pheasants, ducks and partridge for the shooting season, our second batch of 1000 pigs have arrived, followed closely by 50 cattle to fatten and three new chickens.
I just need to go and buy some foals this month to finish off the animal farm. It’s not very holiday like but life certainly isn’t dull!