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With the weather being particularly hot, leading to a number of meetings being abandoned at the beginning of last week, our runners have been pretty thin on the ground over the past fortnight.

The first was CASTANA DIA at Yarmouth on Wednesday 13th, who ran nicely to finish a close runner-up.She was dropped in and settled well, and Kaiya timed her challenged to good effect, hitting the front at the furlong pole. I thought at that stage that she would win but credit has to go to the winner, who found a bit extra and fought back well to get up by a head. I don’t think there were any excuses on our part and, once again, she tried very hard and ran her race.

Three days later we sent SAVROLA up to Haydock to make his handicap debut on what was only his second run on turf. Although there were only four runners, it was a competitive race with his three rivals all coming into this event in good form. In the race itself, he settled well and got into a nice rhythm. When he made headway over 2f out, it looked like he would go on to win well but the second horse battled back hard. It looked like we were going to prevail by a head or so but, on the line, things were tighter than ideal with our head being up and our rival’s head being down, meaning that there was only a nose between them. Nevertheless, it was job done and, having only been put up 2lbs by the handicapper, he should continue to progress and improve.

Finally, HI HO SILVER returned to Yarmouth on Thursday where he ran ok to finish 5th. The race didn’t really set up for him as the tail wind meant that the horses on the speed were favoured. We made up some ground in the closing stages, but he was never going to catch the leaders. He is a horse that needs some racing to reach his peak and so it is unfortunate that he hasn’t done much of that this year with, pretty remarkably, rain coming on more than one occasion when he had been due to run.

Looking forward to this week, SPIT SPOT heads to Ffos Las on Monday evening for a fillies’ maiden. As this race is part of the Great British Bonus scheme, there is plenty of money on offer. She is very well and should give a good account of herself, with William Haggas’ filly, who is rated 78, appearing to be our main rival.

OH SO AUDACIOUS goes to Yarmouth on Tuesday for her handicap debut. It is possible that she might need a bit further than the 1m here, but this race should teach us a bit more about her.

TOTAL JOY is entered at Leicester on Wednesday, and we’ll take a view on that option before declarations on Monday morning. I am not sure that the likely dry conditions and fast ground will suit him ideally. FREE STEP has an entry at Nottingham on Thursday, and we’ll make a decision on her participation later in the week. Finally, BAGUE D’OR may head to the final day of Glorious Goodwood on Saturday, but I’ll have a good look at the entries for the staying handicap before taking a decision on his participation.