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Out & About With Ben Sutton

Hello! In the last few weeks nothing much has changed for me from working, riding out and racing. With Christmas being less than two weeks away, London is extremely busy with everyone socialising and the pubs are rammed from Monday to Sunday!

On Sunday I was at Alnwick, where luckily Dad and I were able to break up the long trip on Saturday to stay with my grandparents the night before and after who live 40 minutes from the track, which was ideal! I rode Diplomate Sivola to finish 3rd in the Men's Open. To be honest, we feel he ran a below par race; from the word go he never travelled with his usual zest, just felt flat. Maybe the long journey took it out of him but we will reassess and I’m sure he’ll come back stronger next time as he was absolutely bouncing at home. Also, just want to say a huge thank you to Joe Hill for making the long 10-hour round trip up. Apart from the disappointment of Diplomate Sivola, if you haven’t been, Alnwick is a lovely track facing out to the North Sea; I would highly recommend making the trip, everyone was super friendly and welcoming.

The weekend before I rode Sir Mangan at Wadebridge where he ran a valiant race to finish a close second behind Sykes in the Men’s Open. It's great to see he’s still showing his usual enthusiasm with his 14th birthday coming up next month. I just felt he couldn’t quite go with the leaders so next time we’ll probably look for a more staying track with more cut in the ground, but he loves going around the tight bends so that’s not an issue. Alan seems happy with the way he came out of the race, so he’ll be out again in the new year.

This weekend coming I’m planning on riding Chameron in the Mixed Open at Larkhill, which will probably be a freezing cold day as it usually is there! Sam Loxton says he’s in great form and he should come on from his last run. I feel it will probably be a competitive race, but we will give our best shot. Before Chameron runs I will be a nervous spectator as Dad (Nick Sutton) runs his 4-year-old homebred in the 4 & 5yo maiden, which is partly owned by Alan Hill and will be in the hands of James King. I have been fortunate enough to ride him in his recent pieces of work, in which he has been going very nicely and feels in great form, so fingers crossed he follows on from his success at Revesby last month.

I won’t be at Chaddesley Corbertt on the 28th as I have the family shoot at my Grandfathers, which makes the exception of coming before racing and I don’t have anything at Horseheath at the moment. I wish everyone a Happy Christmas and New year!!

Images kindly supplied by Hattie Austin Photography

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