There are some busy days to look back on in the weeks ahead, but 12th April isn’t one of them! In fact, the only winner I can find is Ifan, who scored in an extended 1m1f handicap at Wolverhampton on 12th April 2014.
Ifan had been sent to us by Derek and Jean Clee, having started his career in the care of the late Bryn Palling, who did an awful lot for Welsh racing in his 40 years as a trainer until his retirement in 2013.
Derek and Jean went on to share the horse with WRB Racing, who also enjoyed plenty of success with the likes of First Fandango (a six-time winner over jumps and placed at Aintree and Cheltenham). Though Ifan was certainly a bit of a character, it was something different to have a ‘full-time’ flat horse around the place and certainly something I wouldn’t mind having again should the opportunity arise!
He was ridden that day by then 5lbs claimer Dan Muscutt, who grew up in West Wales but is now Newmarket-based and has enjoyed a very successful career to date, with winners around the world and a very close second in the Grade 1 Arlington Million on his CV.
We’ve at least had a couple of winners on 13th April, the first of them 11 years ago with Option Money, in the hands of Lee Stephens (3) for owner David Lovell. David played a significant part in getting the yard going by supporting us with a near-constant stream of horses in the early days and Option Money’s win at Huntingdon on 13th April 2009 was his third from just six outings for us, having also won his first two the previous spring.
Honey Pound was the other 13th April winner, scoring at Towcester in 2017 under A Johns (3). He joined us from Ireland back in 2014 and had was another to have won his first two starts, adding another at Newton Abbot in 2015 for his enthusiastic owners David and Sue Luke (pictured after Honey Pound’s win) in partnership with Alan Gregg.