Musselburgh will hold a precautionary inspection this morning ahead of their planned Saltire 2012 Race Day.
Frost covers were laid yesterday and clerk of the course Harriet Graham was hopeful racing will go ahead. The outcome of the 8am inspection will be posted on the racecourse’s website and on its Facebook and Twitter feeds.
The feature race is due to be the £12,000 Weatherbys Printing Handicap Chase (2.20) which sees last year’s multiple course winner, Red Tanber, make his second appearance of the season. The chaser faces stiff competition from recent hurdles winner Nine Stories and Nicky Richards-trained Houston Dynimo.
Richards said: “He’s won round there on the Flat and he’s a grand little horse – he’s ran three solid races since we sent him chasing. I wouldn’t say he’s terribly well handicapped but he’s in such good nick we might as well run and he shouldn’t be far away.”
Richards can initiate a lucrative double by winning the £8,000 Weatherbys Printing Services Novices’ Handicap Chase with Tutchec, still a maiden over fences but a respectable second to Secret Desert at Ayr on his latest outing. Tutchec made a number of mistakes on the heavy ground but was still in front approaching the last fence and was only headed on the run-in. The Cumbrian handler said: “His jumping went to pieces in the latter stages after he had travelled strongly. I’m hoping he will go close if things don’t happen too fast for him.”
• The minimum weight to be carried by jockeys on the Flat is to rise by 2lb to 8st as of 1 January, the British Horseracing Authority has announced.
Developed in consultation with the Professional Jockeys Association, the amendment to the rules is one of a number of changes aimed at assisting jockeys’ welfare. The minimum weight was last raised in 2002, from 7st 10lb to 7st 12lb. Additional monitoring is to be introduced to aid jockeys’ welfare, with bone density scans as a licensing requirement for all apprentice and conditional jockeys.
BHA chief medical advisor Dr Michael Turner said: “The initiatives represent a significant forward step for the welfare of British jockeys. The rise in the minimum weight was an obvious step to take in view of the fact that the average weight of the British population is rising.”