Entries by Tony Stafford

Monday Musings: Apres le Deluge

Early in the summer, I went up to Hedgeholme Stud in Co Durham to catch up on the boss’s breeding stock after their switch to that farm, writes Tony Stafford. Three of his remaining mares had safely delivered their offspring and had also been tested in foal for the coming season. After some serious thinning […]

Monday Musings: When the name sounds the same

One of the few pleasures for generally-beleaguered owners, weighed down by ever-increasing costs and hard-to-secure prize money in the age of the three G’s – Gosden, Godolphin and Galileo – is to name one’s own horses, especially when it’s a home-bred, writes Tony Stafford. Raymond Tooth approaches the task with a mixture of intelligence, research […]

Monday Musings: Breeders’ Cup and stuff

Second marriages are definitely different, writes Tony Stafford. I would never have entertained putting on a gorilla mask to “scare” Halloween callers to the house in search of those Haribo scare sweets as happened (see picture) last Wednesday. First time round, all Halloween meant to me was the top-class jumper who won the King George […]

Monday musings: there but by the grace…

From the moment I saw the six-day entries for last Saturday’s Conundrum Consulting EBF Fillies Stakes at Newbury, my thoughts very rarely strayed far from King Power, writes Tony Stafford. The two-year-old Frankel filly of that name, a £2.5 million Andrew Balding-trained filly who was in the first division of 12, while Ray’s debutante had ten […]

Monday Musings: A Royal Scoop!

What was different, indeed unique, about Saturday at Ascot? With the sun shining and the temperature climbing into the 20’s it could have been the warmest Qipco Champions Day yet, writes Tony Stafford. With 30,000 in attendance the day confirmed Ascot’s ability to pack in the crowds, and John Gosden collected three big prizes with […]

Monday Musings: International Flights of Fancy

The anticipated appeal of watching Big Brother, either in the alleged Celebrity version, or the original warts and all with its calculatedly-outrageous young contestants, ended the minute John McCririck hove into view all those years ago, writes Tony Stafford. Around the owners’ room bar at Yarmouth races today, though, talk will inevitably turn to the […]

Monday Musings: Johnny vs Obie

Ever since Ascot’s Champions Day in late-October (20th this year) became an integral part of Britain’s autumn racing schedule, the Cambridgeshire and Cesarewitch meetings at Newmarket have had to be moved forward by a week from their traditional place in the calendar, writes Tony Stafford. Meanwhile, some of the major juvenile events have consequently been […]

Monday Musings: Making Hayes

Just one word from me and it’s off to the UK to ride their first winner there in 2018, writes Tony Stafford. In my delayed missive last week, penned (can you still say that?) in the early hours of Tuesday morning, I related brief conversations I had, first with Ronan Whelan and then Chris Hayes […]

Tuesday Musings: Sorry I’m Late…

A week and a day ago I predicted an action-packed four days in Ireland for the three old boys, writes Tony Stafford. The actuality was far more than that, starting with a quirky night at Newbridge, one of the country’s truly authentic small greyhound tracks, through the delights of Leopardstown, Shelbourne Park (dogs again) and […]

Monday Musings: Missing The Leger

Unlike my near contemporaries Howard Wright and Tony Morris, I have a far from complete attendance record at the St Leger, although for the past 20-odd years the absences have been rare enough, writes Tony Stafford. I will miss the 2018 vintage though as with Harry Taylor and Alan Newman, the latter author of “It’s […]

Monday Musings: Doolan Seizes Her Opportunity

When you watch racing on television, it is not unusual to disagree with the comments of some presenters, writes Tony Stafford. On Saturday afternoon, a few minutes after 5.15 p.m., the always contentious James Willoughby came out with to my mind the most preposterous statement of his televisual career in company with Nick Luck on […]

Monday Musings: All About the A’s

This weekend for me was all about the A’s, writes Tony Stafford. Starting with Ascot and the Shergar Cup which - along with 31,000 other attendees - I thoroughly enjoyed, it progressed yesterday with Alpha Centauri and Advertise collecting the two Group 1 races in France and Ireland respectively. In between, young Andrew Breslin was […]

Monday Musings: A Lull in the Programme

Knowing that this coming Saturday is something of a non-event racing-wise – unless you enjoy the concept of the Shergar Cup and the delights of Ascot in midsummer – I’ve tried to make some sense of the seven Flat-race meetings on offer around the country, writes Tony Stafford. Trainers and owners have become frustrated by […]

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