Philip Kirby Racing

Racehorse Trainer based at Richmond, North Yorkshire

Doncaster & Kelso

It’s one of the bigger days of her career…. Can Lady Buttons retain her crown in The Yorkshire Rose Mares Chase

The purple & white scarves will be out in force today as the 1.35 at Doncaster has the look of an epic Mares Chasing clash not previously seen on these shores….there’s no surprise the papers are calling it  the ‘Mares Gold Cup’. To find 4 steeplechasing mares rated 149 and over all taking each other on ( plus 2 other highly regarded multiple winners) it’s going to be an absolute cracker and its both terrifying and fantastic to be part of it with our pride & joy, ‘Lady Buttons’. Following a bad fall on Boxing Day, we will now see Tommy deputising for Adam who has sustained damage to his vertebrea. It’s heartbreaking news for Adam who will be absolutely gutted to be on the sidelines and although he has had 12 incredible wins on her, a mare like this comes around once in a lifetime and he wanted to be part of all her journey……Everyone  is wishing Lady B’s super-sub Tommy the best of luck in his place and he’ll be desperate to make it win no. 2 on her following their superb Grade 2 hurdling win earlier this year. Wether she wins or is placed, a safe return is the most important thing and let’s hope she can once more rise to the big occasion like the legend she is 💜 The Pride of Yorkshire.

As has become the norm, both Jayne and Keith, Phil & I will be striding off nervously and watching it all on our own, but all we’ll be somewhere near that winning post come the run to the last and we’ll be shouting her & Tommy home if he’s half a length down at the last and waiting to pounce up the run in.  Buttons is the oldest of the four 149/150 Mares today at 9 years old, but having that season off in her past, it has perhaps given her another year to be at the top of her game and she certainly hasn’t regressed this season.

The full field…

Report and photos from the track later this afternoon.

We start proceedings with our favourite little horse making his seasonal comeback….

This is his prep run ahead of a tilt at the Musselburgh Grand National in early feb, and although he goes there with a decent chance, there is also plenty left in he tank for the months to come.

Ravenscar makes her second hurdling start in the 1pm at Doncaster folllowing her debut at Aintree, and she will have learnt plenty from that experience.

Tommy schooling RAVENSCAR

Our 3rd mare to run this afternoon is Dieu Benisse up at Kelso with Sean Quinlan taking the ride. This is another hotly contested 12 runner mares event and she goes there with a sound chance on ground that we wish was a little bit quicker but she looks tremendous and we are hopeful of a good run.

Dieu Benisse

We had 2 runners at Catterick yesterday – both novice hurdlers learning their trade and Phil was pleased with both Master Newton ( am embryo chaser) and Milanvera who needs mares handicaps on Spring ground to be truly competitive.

Many of our team were feeling a little tender early on yesterday following our Christmas Party that in true PKR style finished well into the early hours with a ‘lock in’ at The Green Oak – otherwise known as the office at Green Oaks. Thanks go to Victor & Vinnie who had it all miraculously tidied up by 6.30 am!

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