Andrew Balding blogs on On Demand's progress
Andrew Balding blogs on running the marathon, awards time for the grooms and On Demand's progress.
Last Updated: 19/02/14 2:01pm
It was an unusually strong maiden for Southwell and she was simply outclassed by the David Simcock colt that won the race, and perhaps a little tired by the end which cost her second. But she broke really well, liked the surface and will definitely progress for the experience. She finished five lengths ahead of the horse in forth, who was officially rated 70, so on face value we have to be pleased with the run.
Looking ahead, she needs to have three runs in maidens before she qualifies for a handicap mark. As she likes the fibresand surface at Southwell, I am looking at a couple of races over seven furlongs in March, with the aim of having her fit and ready for the start of the turf season, before the ground hardens up later in the summer.
On a separate note, I was very pleased to see that two of my hard working stable staff have made it as finalists in the Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards. Leanne Masterson, who is in the Rider and Groom category, is a fantastic role model for the other staff, and is always ultra-reliable. Whilst Scott Sainsbury, who is nominated for the David Nicholson Newcomer Award, has made a fantastic impression in the short time he has been with us, working very hard and is always immaculately turned out. The awards are a wonderful way to recognise those in the industry that do the hard work, and we are very grateful to Godolphin for sponsoring this great initiative run by the British Horseracing Authority.
Finally, I am running the London Marathon in April, and have been trying to get as much training in as possible at the moment. Unfortunately with all this rain, it becomes difficult to get the mileage in when you are constantly running into floods. But I am booked in to run the Reading Half Marathon at the start of March - I see it as my prep run in the Craven before heading to the Guineas!
So hopefully I will be in top condition heading into the big race in April.