RACING continues. Phew. And what a weekend we have just had with the Welsh National, Paul Nicholls domination and Daryl Jacob five-timer.
But who or what has made it to my latest Good, Bad & Ugly column? Let's find out…
I have emphasised on TV in recent days that the moaning in racing must stop. That we just all need to rejoice there is somewhere racehorses can run. That so many jobs are being kept going in a huge industry.
However, of course I'm fully aware that British racing faces many problems – essentially the issues of funding, prize-money and keeping owners.
While I strongly believe at this moment in time we just have to celebrate what we have, I'm not oblivious to the issues behind the scenes. Owners are, in particular, crucial for the sport to be the fantastic spectacle that it can be.
For that reason, during my Sky Sports Racing shift Monday, I made a point of mentioning every winning owner I could. And I will continue to do so.
Indeed, I would encourage the bosses of any racing broadcaster to tell presenters – many of whom of course will say they already do this – to make more effort than ever to give owners the recognition they deserve.
Some owners will not care, indeed some would prefer to remain in the shadows. Others will love a mention.
It's just a small way someone in my position can say thank you to those who, at this hard time, are able to own horses which provide such amazing entertainment to us horse racing lovers. Hopefully some will appreciate the effort.
On the horsey front I have to throw in the Nicholls seven-timer on Saturday and Jacob's quintet. Nicholls often takes January easy – but not this year. The Ditcheat maestro is going great guns.
Jacob, once a Nicholls boy, goes about his business quietly and with skill and style. He's a good egg trust me.
Adam Wedge got the job done in the Welsh National for Evan Williams with the chucked in Special Reserve. The Welsh-trained winner was a joy to watch. Fair play.
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The rumour mill was rife Sunday evening that elite sport would be cancelled due to Covid-19 on Monday afternoon. The rumours were wrong.
I was just one of many I suspect that was put in a panic at the possible news, and that kind of speculation makes one realise just how on the edge we all are.
These are bad times, there really isn't much for most normal people to look forward to and no real sign of things changing, for all that vaccinations have to eventually make some impact if the vaccines truly work.
Although I have a daughter, I live alone, and while I have a pretty active social life online – and I'm luckier than many as I'm still currently allowed to work – it's a lonely old world.
Be as kind as you can to anyone you know. That's my message. I mean it. You never know what someone is going through behind closed doors. And your public impression of someone can be very different to reality.
Not all bookmakers have decided what to do with ante-post Cheltenham markets if the Irish are not allowed to come and raid these shores.
I suspect all will be well and if the sport is taking place Irish horses will be at the Festival. But you would not want to put your life on it.
My advice to all bookmakers would be to announce now that if Irish horses as a group are not able to race then all ante-post markets are null and void. Any sane person would understand.
If, come the time, there is the odd runner that doesn't come and the reason is either Brexit or Covid then simply refund bets on those animals and include a Rule 4 notice at the time the bet was struck on the other ante-post bets in that race.
It's very simple. And us punters we have to be mature enough to get that these are not normal times.
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