2009 Ladbrokes St Leger Stakes

A mixed bag to get through today, dear reader, as I attempt to tidy up the business of the week.

Firstly, I've news of the Geegeez Racing Club horses, Obvious and Baggsy.

As many of you will know, Obvious had her second run for us, and third overall, when finishing down the field in a Goodwood maiden on Tuesday. The trip was on the long side for her, and she hated the ground, which was too firm.

However, despite that, she did break well again and traveled kindly until running out of gas around two and a half furlongs out.

That was Obvious' third run overall, and she will now qualify for a handicap rating. The handicapper will publish his verdict of her merit next Tuesday, and all eyes will be on that information. We hope that she will get a rating of somewhere between 55 and 60, which will enable her to be competitive in races at that level.

Whatever the determination of the handicapper, Obvious will have a mini-break of about four weeks now prior to her next run, which will be on either softer ground or the all weather.

We look set to have a lot of fun with her over the winter, when she gets the chance to race at her level.


I've also got an update on our other Geegeez horse, Baggsy, who has been progressing well at home. She's never been to the track as yet, and is a two year old sister to two winners in Julia's yard.

Baggsy will make her debut in a fillies' maiden at Kempton Park on 21st September, over seven furlongs. She's bound to improve for the experience, never having seen a racetrack before and, as we've got to start somewhere with her, we'll see how she goes.

There's still a few shares available in Baggsy so, if you're interested in being a part owner and joining the Geegeez Racing Club, then click this link here: join the Geegeez Racing Club.


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Now then, I happened to watch a certain game of football last night, between England and Croatia. I have to say that I've rarely seen England look better - in fact, I can't remember ever seeing them play better - than they did for about 75 minutes last night.

They were fiercely determined, worked exceptionally hard, showed real attacking intent all over the pitch, and could have scored eight!

In winning 5-1 (there's something about that scoreline), they booked our place at next year's World Cup. Well done boys!

For the Scots, Welsh and Northern Irish, the news was less good. The last named can still qualify but Wales and Scotland it's another four years wait alas.

Finally, on the subject of footy, well done to the Faroe Islands, who managed to beat Lithuania last night to record what must be only their third or fourth ever win. Great work!


Back to the horse racing, and today sees the start of the three day St Leger meeting from Doncaster. The big race itself suffered a setback today when it was announced that ante-post favourite, Age Of Aquarius, will now not take part, due to Aidan O'Brien not being "entirely happy" with his colt (whatever that means).

So we're down to the dead eight for the Leger, and my ante-post ticket, Monitor Closely - having been supplemented - is now a 9/2 chance (as low as 4/1 in some places). His odds have been restless ever since his emphatic four and a half length win in the Great Voltigeur Stakes at York and, having seen a high of 17.0, are now into 5.7.

I wish I could say I got a great price, but 8.22 wasn't even the best price available in the hour I placed the wager! Such is life.

It's often a tricky race to predict the winner of, and so I'm interested in your thoughts. I've put a poll question up top right, where you can share your idea of the winner of the last Classic of 2009.

Who do you reckon? And, if you want to make a case for your choice, feel free to add a comment below.


Lastly today, it's Thursday, so let's have a spot of fun. My thanks to Dave "Cheap as Chips" Dickinson for sending me this. It's either a remarkable piece of camera jiggery-pokery, or a masterpiece of engineering calculations. Either way, it's a dandy enough spectacle!

Ciao pronto,


p.s. Don't forget to add your thoughts on the St Leger below.

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9 replies
  1. david w says:

    Hi Matt
    Still hoping ‘Sir’ Henry can get Father Time back on track, ante post at average 14’s!!! Must be easier without 2 of Aidan’s in the race??

    Shame I couldn’t get to Goodwood Tuesday but apparently “watching a horse that won’t win” is not a good reason to shut down my kitchen!!! Some bosses eh? On that note, is she still well?

  2. Phil says:

    Hi Matt,

    Monitor Closely seems a definite good bet. Strong front running performance, looked the best/strongest horse. Good luck


  3. Alan says:

    Changingoftheguard is the winner of the Leger.
    Reason being stamina, not to mention the stable 😉 and jockey. Kitewood has proven ability in G races that I feel were run too suit, easy lead and will not have it that way. I prefer the other Goduffin horse Mastery to be there at the business end.

    If Monitor wins its obvious you will be pleased but can not see it myself.

    So forecast for me is Changingoftheguard & Mastery.

    Good luck all.

  4. Jamie says:

    Sorry to say the St Leger is a classic in name only.

    Personally, i wish Sea The Stars hadn’t run last week and had been saved for this.

    He would still be able to go to the Arc or Breeders Cup as a Triple Crown Winner.

    Exited just by the thought of that, alas we got thgis shower of ????

    No bet for me.

    Good Luck to those who have had a bet.

  5. David Dickinson says:

    I have had Father Time as the winner all season.
    Henry has played his cards close to his chest with this one running the horse at the wrong distances and the wrong courses. Victory will be a really good tonic for Mr. Cecil.

  6. Ian says:

    Don’t know who will win the Leger but don’t think that Changingoftheguard will.. he just doesn’t look good enough to me. I could be proven wrong however! Oh and that video is clearly a spoof… notice the “splash” made when he enters the water… barely a ripple!!!

  7. nick vint says:


    changing of the guard is the winner I am on at 16-1 was told to back this before the Ebor as this was there no 1 choice which seems to have come true then backed it further at 10’s so will be laying all day sat and hopefully will win either way
    only nagging doubt can a horse that came second in a handicap go on and win a classic!!!!

  8. Robbie says:

    I am on Kite Wood, seems like the only stayer and there are doubts over the other horses staying power. For Monitor Closely the pace of the Voltigeur was the slowest in years and a fast pace could catch Monitor Closely out. Have a trixie for the day which is :

    1.55 – Silver Grecian
    2.25 – Judge N Jury
    3.00 – Kite Wood

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