I HAVE knocked Irish Thoroughbred Marketing in the past for not doing enough to support jump racing but ITM deserves a pat on the back for organising the Irish Stallion Trail last week. I suspect the new boss Charlie O’Neill is a closet National Hunt man as I have noticed a bit more ITM activity on the jumps scene in recent months. The fact that Charlie was at Willie Codd’s open day was noticed and appreciated.

The Irish Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association have been doing their bit too for jump racing and for mares in particular. However, I still feel we are well behind our British counterparts on this one. The UK racing programme for mares have evolved to the point where it makes financial sense to buy a filly relatively cheaply in Ireland and put her in training in Britain where there are races to be won.