Entries by Tony Stafford

Monday Musings: (No) Luck on Saturday

As you will know, regular reader, I love a hard-luck story, especially when I’ve participated in any way in such sorry tale, writes Tony Stafford. One happened on Saturday, at Newbury racecourse, 135 miles from my vantage point in the owners’ room on the July Course at Newmarket. I think of both tracks as somewhat […]

Monday Musings: Of Tens and Sovereigns

Aidan O’Brien wins July Cup again, writes Tony Stafford. Of course he does, and we know what the process is, don’t we? Ten Sovereigns on Saturday became number five, 20 years on from the first – Stravinsky – in 1999 and once again it was the case of another near miss in the 2,000 Guineas, […]

Monday Musings: Ballydoyle Baffles via Beggy

When is a pacemaker not a pacemaker? Sound like a M&S food ad? Well, the analogy is fair enough. A pacemaker is not a pacemaker when it’s an Aidan O’Brien pacemaker in the Irish Derby, writes Tony Stafford. In a year when no English stable even bothered to challenge for any of the €1.5 million […]

Monday Musings: Of Black Type and Newsprint

What is it about Frankie Dettori, Ascot racecourse and Magnificent Sevens?, writes Tony Stafford.  On September 28 1996, aged 25, he totally monopolised a single Champions Day (as it was to become) card by riding all seven winners. In the process he bankrupted a number of bookmakers – most vocally the larger-than-life Gary Wiltshire – […]

Monday Musings: A Visinari Visionary

Peter Ashmore and I stood hanging over the rail at the top end of the paddock adjacent to the saddling boxes before the opening race of Newmarket’s July Course season on Saturday, writes Tony Stafford. A big grey colt came by and we agreed: “It’s a giant! Surely he’s come in early before the following […]

Monday Musings: Moore frustrated than ever

Three championship races defined Epsom’s 2019 Derby meeting, writes Tony Stafford. Three times Ryan Moore struck the front in Classic Lester Piggott mode at around the two-furlong pole, the first twice on horses just shaded for favouritism but with outstanding claims and finally on the clear Derby favourite. All three times he was usurped in […]

Monday Musings: A Moot Point?

You read it here first, folks. Hermosa runs in the Investec Oaks on Friday. No I wasn’t in Ireland yesterday. I haven’t spoken to Aidan, to any of the owners – or even Harry! But one thing I do know, it’s been done more than once before, writes Tony Stafford. Then again I’ve just seen […]

Monday Musings: Too Darn Confusing

The Temple Stakes at Haydock, like all the races on next Saturday’s card sponsored by Armstrong Aggregates and Amix Concrete, the Bolton-based businesses run by David and Emma Armstrong, is building up to being a very warm affair, writes Tony Stafford. Yesterday Charlie Hills revealed that last year’s winner Battaash will begin his 2019 campaign, […]

Monday Musings: Trials and undulations

After 2,000 Guineas number ten, on Sunday we had a fifth 1,000 Guineas, again not with the most expected candidate, for Aidan O’Brien and so it went on with the Derby Trials, writes Tony Stafford. Circus Maximus (Dee Stakes), Anthony Van Dyck (Lingfield Derby Trial) and Broome (Derrinstown Stud Stakes) were all favourites when winning […]

Monday Musings: Classic Parallels

Plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose, writes Tony Stafford. Apart from a cedilla (again) under the “c” of ca and a circumflex accent on the first “e” in meme – my keyboard probably does them, but I don’t know how - little happens that hasn’t happened before. Thus, the more things change the […]

Monday Musings: Never Say No Nay Never

I happened to call Wesley Ward on Friday, writes Tony Stafford. The California-based Royal Ascot juvenile specialist trainer was typically bullish about having a half-sister of his brilliant Queen Mary/ King’s Stand speedball Lady Aurelia ready to make the trip to the meeting in June. Indeed, after Lady Pauline’s near 10-length debut Keeneland win on […]

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