It’s been a busy weekend, if not a terribly productive one race-wise. Blessing Belle actually ran quite a bit better than her last time out (well, it would have been hard to run worse), and Thulliez is up for giving her another shot. She’ll go back on Monday in a 2,400-meter handicap on the fibersand. She hasn’t gotten a chance to run on that surface yet because both of her races were on the turf, and I do think she might do something there. She’ll keep the blinkers, which seemed to help.
Shinko ran midfield on Sunday, but it wasn’t really his fault – it was an amateur rider race and I had no expectations going into it. The point was to get our favorite “cavaliere,” Florence, back into racing after a four-year absence. Florence is a wonderful person and she has been galloping my horses for me in Maisons-Laffitte while I’ve been in Cagnes. She was forced to give up her amateur license because of an illness, and the race Sunday was a victory for her in any case, because it marked the end of a long battle back. She’ll do better next time out, and Shinko got a workout under his belt in preparation for another crack at a Tierce handicap on the 23rd.
I, meanwhile, have fallen into the routine of morning work, quick lunch, racing, night stable, cantine bar. It’s the fault of the English contingent, really, that last bit. They all congregate in the bar after night stable, and even Bertrand, Spidello’s owner, has hooked into the routine. It’s a good way to discuss the day’s events, and you never know who might turn up. Tonight, I got a chance to lift a glass with the owner of Makfi. Turns out his uncle, who was also there, has won a bit of money on my horses over the past couple of years, which earned me a complimentary round of drinks. At home, meanwhile, I’ve fallen into the routine of meals consisting of either cheese and crackers or pasta, because I only have a gas burner to cook with and I’m not ambitious enough to get very creative. I’ve had a steady string of visitors off and on, which has thwarted any long-term, and maybe healthier, grocery shopping. But horse boot camp is almost over, and in two weeks I will go back to my real life – and a healthier diet – in Maisons-Laffitte.