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With the continued absence of rain and fast ground being prevalent across the country, last week was a quiet one with only two runners.

HI HO SILVER went to Yarmouth on Tuesday for his seasonal debut. It was a day when a strong tail wind meant that there was considerable advantage to be had from getting on the front end and bagging the stand rail. Although we were drawn against that rail, we didn’t have enough early pace to grab the lead and we had to settle in the pack. In the circumstances, I thought he did well to run on to finish third and that was a good solid start to his season. We know plenty about him including that there are days when he doesn’t perform to his best. When conditions are right, however, he usually pops up and wins a race somewhere along the line and, hopefully, that will happen again this year.

At Newmarket on Saturday, TURNTABLE ran very well on his return to action in the valuable 9f Heritage Handicap, starting his season with a personal best to finish second. The way the race was set up wasn’t ideal for him in that the very early pace wasn’t as strong as it could have been. It took them a little while to get going and set a decent pace. As a result, he was a little bit keen early on although not too much. Hollie pulled him out at the Bushes to make his challenge, when he still travelling very strongly. The jockeys said that the last furlong and a half was the firmest part of the course on the day and I think he was just feeling the ground and was rolling around a little bit in the closing stages. Still, it was good effort and he ran very well, giving everybody a memorable day out on a good day’s racing. In terms of future plans, I wouldn’t mind stepping him up in trip to 10f when we have the right track and conditions, especially now that he is generally settling better. He is always going to be a hold-up horse because he won’t settle if you put him in the ruck. We need to be on a course where that tactic can work and you wouldn’t want to run him on a track that is too tight, so we’ll have to pick and choose. Once we see what the handicapper does with him on Tuesday, we will settle on a plan.

With the dry weather looking likely to continue for at least another week, it is likely to be another quiet one ahead.  ANGEL AMADEA has her first run for us at Windsor on Monday, when we’ll see what we can learn about her. THE THUNDERER makes his return at Chelmsford on Thursday. He’s in need of a run and, as he has fair form on the all-weather, I don’t mind running him there. Hopefully he’ll give a good account of himself. As for the weekend, I am not sure what we’re going to do yet. We’ve a few pencilled in but, if it stays dry, it is unlikely that we’ll bother with many of them.