Sue Smith - Dreaming of Grand National repeat
Sue Smith knows a thing or two about training the winner of the Grand National and last Friday 30 lucky Racegoers Club members got the chance to hear first hand what it takes.
Having been warmly welcomed to Craiglands Racing by Sue and her trusty pal Dexter the dog, Racegoers Club members were treated to a brilliant tour round her stables. They are very open and close knit yard and house some very friendly horses. After a look at her current stable stars, including Straidnahanna, we crossed over to the moors to witness third lot of the morning on the picturesque two mile gallops.
Sue explained that every horse does some form of work everyday, apart from if they are racing the next day or on Sunday. Unlike most stables the work is very varied and they have an abundance of space to hack on the moors which keeps the horses happy.
Dexter and Sue say hello to Grand National hero Auroras Encore
After seeing the stables and gallops Sue showed us Grand National hero Auroras Encore who still lives in the yard and she explained that it was touch and go whether he was going to run back in 2013. There had been particularly bad weather in the run up to the race and the snow made it impossible to ride horses out on the gallops or go for a hack. Fortunately, Wetherby Racecourse allowed Sue to take Auroras Encore down for a racecourse gallop after racing on day and the rest is history.
Cloudy Too - pops his head out to say hello
Having won the most famous race in the world in 2013 she is hoping to repeat the trick this year - although she will need a bit of luck before the race even starts if Cloudy Too is going to make the cut as he is currently number 51. If he does find his way into the starting line up then Sue is confident of a big run and he could well out run his long odds.
For more information on future stable tours with the Racegoers Club and the chance for exclusive behind the scenes access, take a look at our up coming events.