Pinhooker’s diary: hard yards pay dividends
Jeremy Brummitt: "People are obsessed with my hat"
PICTURE: Tattersalls Pinhooker's diary: hat obsessesions and Radio 4
Pinhooker Jeremy Brummitt reports from Tattersalls on Tuesday to give an insight into how a breeze-up consignor sources stock
I NORMALLY wake up two or three minutes before the World Service starts. I make a point of laying in bed for two minutes to wait for the whistle to go to signal that it's time to go over the top.
Because it never goes I know it's not going to be a bad day. I keep that in my mind throughout the day. All my clients have become friends, and the ones that don't become friends, we don't stay together for very long, so I'm very lucky.
I listen to Radio 4 for half an hour and go through yesterday's results and go through some pedigrees. Some people like to check the updates and annotate the pages but the updates I'm most interested in are the ones that happen after we've bought the horse.
Most mornings I go for a run but I've had training problems of late so I'm laid up for the time being. I'm generally looking at horses by eight o'clock and today is no exception.
I like to see as many as I can because I do a lot of mating plans. It's nice when you get to know a mare and the progeny she produces, especially when she produces one that's aberrant from the norm. I look at horses that I don't necessarily want to buy because it's like fitting the pieces of a jigsaw together.
I'm appalled by how many people breed for the sales ring and not for the racecourse. It's apparent looking at mares that aren't bred consistently, they go to stallions of different sizes, different sire lines and different racing aptitudes, just because people are hoping that the sire will be the next big thing in the sales ring.
It has a knock-on effect with racing because I don't think they're breeding horses that are suitable for purpose.
I've got quite an unusual remit because I provide a shortlist for some clients and am forwarded a shortlist for others, so I see the selection process from both sides.
A lot of people who give me a shortlist are interested in pedigrees, and I think pedigrees are endlessly fascinating, but I think the physical individual is more important and the environment is more important still.
Pedigrees start at a mile, so if you're trying to buy a sprinter you just want the best physical athlete. It's only really when you go beyond a mile that the traits that last in pedigrees kick in.
We bought one on Tuesday morning, a colt by Intello for 28,000gns. I think Intello is going to be a good stallion. He was slightly underrated as a racehorse, but he fits our brief as he could potentially be a sire of Classic horses.
We thought we were going to have a go at a Harbour Watch colt, physically he reminded me of Gone West who is the broodmare sire, but he'll probably end up being the most expensive Harbour Watch in the sale as Hong Kong Jockey Club bought him for 100,000gns.
He made more than I thought he would but I hope they're right about him. I'd rather be an underbidder on a good horse than buy the wrong one.
Later in the day we also secured a Havana Gold colt for 22,000gns. Having checked his wind in the lunge ring to make sure everything is as it should be, the final decision we're faced with is which bottle of wine to order in the Green Room.
At the end of the day it can take me 20 minutes to take my hat off if it's been particularly wet or windy. If I'm very tired I sleep in it so I can start earlier the next morning. People are obsessed with my hat.
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