BHA LEADING THE WAY IN EQUINE FLU FIGHT
The big news in recent days has obviously been the equine flu outbreak and the impact it has had on racing in Britain. I think the BHA have reacted the right way to it. I don’t think there is such thing as an overreaction in these situations.
If they tried to put a bandage on it and it spiralled out of control, then we really would have a big problem, so taking decisive action at the very start of the issue is the best way to contain it and get it sorted.
There is an issue in the non-racing world with equine flu and we need to do everything we can to keep it out of racing. As inconvenient as this situation is, it should concentrate everyone’s mind onto better practice in all yards with regard to hygiene and horse movement to try and reduce the risk of it getting in.
It’s a bit like the foot-and-mouth disease situation, we are all going to have to up our game to raise standards again. Hopefully the situation will be resolved soon and I think the BHA have given us the best chance of getting back on the right road as soon as possible.
MY HAT-TRICK AT NAAS ON SATURDAY
He came with a big reputation after winning his point-to-point, but he was very disappointing on his first start on the track in a maiden hurdle at Limerick. Hopefully he can get back on track here and show more.
He is a homebred of JP’s from an old Aga Khan family that has produced plenty of winners over jumps and the first couple of crops of his ill-fated sire Fame And Glory have been going well, so hopefully he can make a positive start to his career.
My last ride of the day is in the O’Driscoll O’Neil Handicap Chase on the Jessica Harrington-trained CLOSE SHAVE (3.10). He’s been a lucky horse for me, as I’ve only ridden him six times and won three on him.
His form looks to have tailed off a little bit, but he finished a close second in this race last year off a 2lb higher mark, so hopefully a return to this track will spark a bit of a revival in him.