Tom Scudamore: The dog is as lean as he’s been all year!
The cold snap may have hit Tom Scudamore’s plans for the weekend, but at least his dog is getting plenty of exercise.
Like everybody, I’m eagerly awaiting the end of this cold snap so we can get back racing. It’s very frustrating for everybody involved, but I was delighted to have ridden my 50th winner of the season recently, so that takes a bit of the pressure off. If I was having a bad season, or sat on 49 winners, then I’d probably be pacing up and down or headbutting the wall right about now.
I’ve been doing plenty of babysitting in recent days, and the dog is as lean as he’s been all year, so I haven’t been short of things to do around the house. David and the team at Pond House have done an excellent job to keep the show on the road down there, so I’ve been riding out and helping where I can. Trainers and jockeys can sort of be in limbo at times like this, as you don’t know when you are going to start again, so for the most part you just have to carry on as normal.
Fitness-wise, I’m pretty fortunate that I have a routine that I stick to, and it enables me to stay fit and ready to ride all year round. I eat healthily (most of the time) anyway, so I don’t have to worry too much about weight and fitness. As jockeys we’ve been on the go for a while, so if you use it constructively, then it can give you that recovery time that is sometimes needed.
The festive period is a great time of year from a racing point of view, and I’ve been very fortunate to win the King George and the Feltham on a few occasions, so it’s a time of year I always really look forward to.
My most memorable moment from this period would certainly be winning the King George on Thistlecrack in 2016. He was electric that day and it was a pleasure to be on board. I was watching Racing TV last night, and they were showing highlights of the race from years gone by. When you see the likes of Desert Orchid, Kauto Star, See More Business, that’s when it hits home that your one of the ones who has done it too, so that gives me great pride.
I haven’t had as much luck in the Welsh National in fairness, the closest I probably got was when Monbeg Dude finished fourth back in 2014. It was a race that was very good to my dad, and I have some great memories of him winning it. Apart from Run and Skip, I was there each time he won it, and Carvill’s Hill is the one that really sticks in my mind. Bonanza Boy was great, but Carvill’s Hill winning was so exciting, and what he did that day was one of the best handicap performances of all time.
Our plans are slightly up in the air for the race this year. Gericault Roque was the one we were really looking forward to running, but he hasn’t come out of the Newbury race as well as we’d hoped, so we’ll monitor him over the next week or so. He’s a young horse, and one thing this cold snap does do is make the ground that bit quicker, so he wouldn’t be certain to make it to Chepstow at this stage.
Hopefully it will get a bit warmer next week and we can get back racing. The dog certainly hopes so anyway!
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