When it comes to National Hunt racing you find yourself in the oddest and perhaps seemingly mad situations. I would imagine that's how Kings Apollo's owners felt driving to Taunton last Wednesday. In the sensible world of reality warnings, exhortations to 'don't travel unless absolutely necessary' were cavalierly shrugged off. Meanwhile in the 'show must go on' racing world, inspections were suddenly scheduled while our team was being blown across the Severn Bridge but onwards they drove. The best bit about this is that they were heading to watch a horse that many believed wanted better going than briny deep. Indeed a tempestuous sea of competition was what came to pass at Taunton and thankfully Kings Apollo took to this 'war of attrition' rather well. Perhaps it's slightly presumptive to use the 2006 Gold Cup winner's name here but that is exactly what it was. Ben Poste gave him a confident ride and the horse sailed over the last as easy as white horses up the beach. Kings Apollo has been here from the day we started so it is fantastic to see him continue to do everyone proud.
There was a similar situation at Exeter on Friday but again Gayebury just ploughed on through the mire. He was atoning for his disqualification at Ffos Las and did so in style. He is a lovely horse with a tremendous attitude and just keeps grinding along while others flounder. He was ridden by Andrew Thornton who also rode his close relative Simon, so it was interesting to have a jockey's feedback and comparison. Incidentally, that win leaves Andrew 13 shy of his 1000th career win and he informed us that we were the 176th trainer that he has ridden a winner for. Similarly, Monday evening saw celebrations after Richard Johnson rode his 3000th, winning on St Saviour at Ludlow. Certainly a massively impressive milestone to reach and the next one will hopefully be champion jockey all being well. I am sure everyone would agree that no one deserved it more.