The Tutty family, from Osmotherly, are riding a triumphant wave at the moment.
Father Nigel, who retired from pointing in 2008 with 168 winners under his belt, trains the pointers, while his wife, Karen, holds a permit. They have a nine-horse yard, with daughters Pip and Gemma on hand as stable jockeys. Between riding in races Pippa, 20, is a racing secretary and Gemma, 18, is studying for her A-levels.
The Tuttys’ last 11 runners have produced five winners and two seconds, including recent Sedgefield winner, Mycenean Prince, giving Karen her first hurdle winner.
The Cleveland point saw both girls ride winners giving the yard an impressive strike rate of 55 per cent. Karen has plans to obtain her full training licence shortly, and Pip’s ambition is to win the Ladies’ Flat title.
This Bank holiday is packed with meetings. The Vale of Lune, at Kirkby Lonsdale, is today; York and Ainsty, at Easingwold, tomorrow; Charm Park, Scarborough, on Monday, and High Peak, in Derbyshire, on Tuesday, with its infamous stone-wall race.
High Peak is the one of the oldest courses in the country. I was recently shown their 1911 race card when things were very different. There were five races, including a Lightweights race, a Heavyweights race (over 13 stone) and the Ladies’ race also open to men.
Many of the men who rode at the meeting were to lose their lives fighting in the First World War just a few years later. The poet, Siegfried Sassoon, was an amateur jockey, keeping a diary of his races. He won a number of points up to 1914.
I am busy making a fancy-dress outfit for my son, Felix. The York and Ainsty point hold a children’s fancy-dress competition and as we don’t have any runners, I suggested it to Felix. He was thrilled and spent days debating which outlandish fantasy character he most fancied being.
But satisfying my son with a home-made outfit is proving more challenging than riding a first-time-out maiden.
“No thank you, mummy,” he shakes his head in disappointment when I hold up my efforts.
He has now taken over costume design (sorry, but I am not allowed to spoil the surprise). First prize is a family ticket to Lightwater Valley, so he is determined to do his best.
We hold Skipton races next Sunday. I have been on the search for sponsors in the last few weeks and was relieved to find it easier than expected. We are anticipating a crowd of 6,000 to stride through the farm gates.
The Yorkshire Point to Point Club are sponsoring the Best Turned Out, so every member gets to judge a race. The course is next to the River Wharf and in these dry conditions, unlimited water will prove priceless.
There was a strange sight on view to anyone driving past Coniston Hotel, near Skipton, last Friday evening. A naked man was seen tied to a lamp post close to the A65, a sight endured by 80 diners at the hotel before the unfortunate victim was eventually cut free by some pitying hotel staff.
It was the stag weekend of point-to-point trainer David Easterby, who is due to be married at Sheriff Hutton on June 18.
Tom Bannister, the host, had arranged activities for David and his 30 friends. He was also responsible for organising the female company to entertain the boys but, sadly, lost all street credibility when ‘Roly Poly Rita’ turned up instead of ‘Slinky Susie’.