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Weekly Update 07-10-19

By On 7th October 2019

First up – my apologies for the lack of weekly updates on the website.  I have been on holiday for two weeks and before I went I was trying to get a load of stuff done and the bit that failed was the web updates!  I still issued weekly emails of news to shareholders, but failed to get the web version created.  Now back, I will be in full catch up mode and the updates below cover loads of information!

I need to get cracking on renewal arrangements for all the horses, including sorting out new options.  It will be a busy couple of weeks as I also need to put some effort into sales and marketing and give some of the website content a bit of an overhaul.  It is all good fun though and I am looking forward to getting stuck into it!

The Way You Dance

The Way You Dance finished 3rd at Lingfield at the start of September beaten by three and a half lengths.  Whilst there does seem to be something in his mind that he is associating with a bad experience and a reluctance to repeat, the approach of giving him new surroundings and trying to let him do things his own way led to his best run of the season.  We were treated to a ground-level box looking straight up the finishing straight and there were six shareholders in attendance, joined by some guests.  Michael Attwater also spent most of the evening with us and it was very pleasant sitting on the terrace outside the box with a bar just a few steps away across the lawn!

Sean Levey rode and he said that The Way You Dance had seemed very happy during the race and he had no concerns at all.  Entering the last half a mile, TWYD was in 4th place but still going well and looking like he could challenge.  As they started to make the home turn Sean started to urge him forward and he took second in the last couple of furlongs, but at the furlong pole, the third leaned into him a little and it was clear that The Way You Dance was not going to fight back so Sean eased off on him close to home to finish 3rd.

He raced again in a 2-mile race at Chepstow on the 17th September where he finished 6th.  Things went against us early in the race when another horse came passed The Way You Dance on the outside and cut in on him slightly, causing TWYD to panic and drop himself straight back to last place.  Sean tried twice to encourage him to go forward but TWYD was having none of it and travelled at the same pace irrespective of whether Sean was sitting quietly or pushing him and turning for home, The Way You Dance was last.  Coming off a slow pace and passing the entire field looked a big ask and whilst he did plug on down the straight, he was beaten around 8 lengths in 6th.

With no suitable races in the following couple of weeks, we decided to wait for a race on the all-weather at Lingfield last Thursday (3rd October), but unfortunately The Way You Dance was not able to give us an afternoon to remember, finishing last of the 14 runners.  Everything actually went well ahead of the race and during the race, TWYD did not seem to have any concerns or problems and was well positioned, but at the business end of the race, he faded tamely out of contention.  Michael is keen to “have one more roll of the dice” at Bath next week (16th October), where the race has a lower handicap range, so worse horses, possibly slower ground and probably a slower run race.  Michael thinks that this is worth a try to see if TWYD shows more enthusiasm from a slower pace, but truth be told he is far from confident that this will deliver a different result, which brings us on to what to do next – assuming that TWYD does not show us any more next week.  This is under consideration.

Fr Humphrey

Fr Humphrey was off his food after his win at Fontwell and the two quick races obviously took their toll.   He was entered for a novice hurdle at Newton Abbot, but there were a number of decent horses entered late on and we decided not to run, targetting two October races, a chase at Bangor on 2nd and then another at Kempton Park on Sunday 20th October.  Unfortunately, the plan to run him at Bangor was scuppered by soft ground.  We were very keen to run him but felt that we could not afford to jeopardise the chance to run at Kempton on what will hopefully be much better ground.  Neil has reported over the weekend that Fr Humphrey is in good order and we hopefully, will have a good afternoon out as a final run from our current six months of ownership.

There is more Fr Humphrey news though.  The owner of Fr Humphrey also owns a soft ground chaser named Mount Oliver who was formerly trained by Neil and we are seeking to take him on a similar basis to Fr Humphrey from 1st November to 30th April, but there was also a recent announcement of a new veterans handicap chase series with qualifiers all winter and a £50,000 final at Newbury on 21st March. These races are for conditional jockeys and 3-mile chasers rated up to 125 and Fr Humphrey would be perfect for this series.  The first qualifier is at Huntingdon in mid-November and to qualify for the final, horses need to finish in the top 8 in a qualifier.  Neil would like to get Fr Humphrey qualified and then put him away to bring him back fresh for the final, but this would involve a new lease period for Fr Humphrey and he would probably only run twice in that period.  We are therefore in communication to see if the owner will let us have both horses for the winter and if so, I will put together a “two horses for one price” lease arrangement, with one horse running regularly and the other only running twice but bringing an outside chance of a big payday.  More details will be available soon.

My Brother

We finally had an update on My Brother and it was not as positive as I hoped that it would be.  The good news is that his injury is looking much better and the vet is both happy with his progress and confident that the long term prognosis is very good and that he should return to at least the same level of form as he was showing prior to the injury.  The not so good news is that the vet feels that Bruv would benefit from more time without putting any serious stress through his leg and it, therefore, seems unlikely that we will be able to get him on the racecourse until late this jumps season (March / April / May 2020) at the earliest.  The good news is that he should definitely be running again in the next membership year.  Neil has confirmed that he is bringing him back into the stables this week for daily exercise on the horse walker to start to build his strength and conditioning.  There will be rebates from the current year fees for existing shareholder and share purchase and renewal details for November 2019 to October 2020 are being calculated.

Anjaal / Silver Miss Filly

Michael Attwater recently purchased a horse and the stud that has a two-year-old half-sister to that one contacted him to see if he would be interested in having her in training as well.  She has been slow to develop and so has missed her two-year-old season and the stud is keen to retain ownership as they would like the option to breed from her in the future.  She is a lovely looking filly out of Anjaal whose first two-year-olds have raced this year and they have been pretty successful and Michael liked the look of her.  He suggested to me that I might be interested in taking her and we have agreed with the stud to take her on a lease until 31st December 2020.  We will race her for her three-year-old season and we have the option of sending her back if she is injured or if we feel that she is not good enough to continue with during the year.  She is a genuine flat horse and will ensure that we still have a horse in training with Michael irrespective of what we do with The Way You Dance.  Michael has reported that she looks really nice and I will hopefully get down to see her next week and get some photos and video of her.

I have calculated share prices for her and will be selling 5% shares for £1,100 and 10% for £2,000.  That is less than £100 per month to own 5% of a racehorse and if you would like more information or express your interest, please let me know.

Share Pricing Structure

With my attention starting to turn towards upcoming renewals and with a year of “full time” experience under my belt, I have had a review of how I am running BG Racing.  I have actually made a fairly substantial loss this year due to unsold shares in each of the horses which I pick up the costs for.  I expect to and am happy to own a small shareholding in each horse, but if I am going to operate BG Racing on the same basis as I have done over the past 12 months, then I will need to make sure that more of the shares are sold and my income then becomes income rather than just funding some of my share ownership.

Selling more shares involves either attracting more shareholders or selling some larger shareholdings and I feel that at the moment, I am not doing enough to make purchasing larger shareholdings more attractive.  With my admin fee at such a low level, it results in me selling shares at cost or next to no profit if I offer discounts and the experience is largely similar whatever the shareholding.

I am fully committed to providing an affordable route into ownership and I want to retain and develop the offering to smaller shareholders, but I am also looking at adding benefits to the offering for larger shareholders and being able to offer meaningful discounts on larger share purchases.  As a result, I intend to increase my admin fees for smaller shareholdings, allowing me to provide discounts for larger purchases and to longstanding shareholders.  On a year of training (no purchase of a horse), I will only ever make an income of £2000 – £6000 (plus my 10% share of prizemoney), so I can assure you that I am not getting rich from BG Racing and I will keep the fees under regular review to keep them as low as possible whilst ensuring I have a chance of being able to operate BG Racing at the current level for many years to come.

I will reflect the above in all share prices quoted going forward.  I informed existing shareholders about these changes a couple of weeks ago and was grateful that the news was received so positively. It is nice to get feedback that lets me know that the effort I put in towards ensuring that I try to keep everyone as engaged as possible in the ownership of their horse is appreciated and valued.

From The Stables

Plenty to update!  The Way You Dance finishing third was the best result from our yards in early September with several unplaced runners from Neil Mulholland, Michael Attwater and Johnny Farrelly.  Neil managed a couple of second places through Prettylittlething and Libdan and a 3rd from Code of Law, all at Fontwell which was the start of some better form as his Vancouver was third at Newton Abbot and Soupy Soups was also placed at Perth.  Caroline’s Charm finished 3rd at a big price and Queens Magic delivered a win at Worcester where Harbour Force was placed.  Neil almost had a big winner in Ireland when Shantou Village looked desperately unlucky in the Kerry National at Listowel.  Unseated at the second last when upsides the winner and second it is hard to know where he would have finished but he certainly would have been placed at least.  Johnny had a second the same day through Doubly Clever at Uttoxeter.

Pink Flamingo almost delivered a win for Michael but was ambushed by one that got a dream run up the rail and beat her into second on the line but he had a winner the following day when Delagate This Lord won nicely.  Johnny continued a run of near misses when Bermeo was placed and the next result of note saw Pink Flamingo again find one too good.  Neil recorded another winner when Runasimi River won at Warwick in a race where Simon Earle’s Kilkeaskin Molly ran well and was third.  Neil followed that up with two more winners when Queens Magic won again at Perth and a second win at the track was delivered by Soupy Soups.  Simon then continued his good run when Sixth of June managed 3rd place at 33-1 and Vancouver was placed again for Neil.  It looked like Johnny would record an overdue win last week when Sporting Boy, looked like the winner turning for home, only to be outbattled up the straight to finish 2nd.  Our latest win came last Friday when Neil’s Doing Fine kicked the day off with an excellent win at Fontwell where Soupy Soups and Fingerontheswitch were also placed and on Sunday, Johnny missed out again when Captains Run ran well at Uttoxeter to finish 3rd.

Getting Involved

Fees for horses are all-inclusive and buying a share in a BG Racing horse is a decision that you will not regret.  Quoted prices (except for Fr Humphrey) include the purchase price of the horse and should you decide to renew for a second year, you will only need to pay training fees which are around £200 per 1% share.  If you are interested in finding out more about what is involved, then please do get in touch as I would be delighted to discuss things with you.

I issue weekly shareholder updates (which go into more detail than the blog) and frequent updates on social media.  Feel free to like the FaceBook page and follow the Twitter updates.

I also have an e-book entitled “Racehorse Ownership – Everything You Might Have Wanted To Know But Would Not Have Known Who To Ask“.  This is free and the download page can be accessed here.

Have a great week.



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