A Day In The Life Of A Work Rider - Well That Didn't Go To Plan!

Elf On A Shelf

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28 February 2011
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12,668
The day started off as usual - far too early in the morning! Went and got my lot done then headed to work. Mucking out is the usual affair - some of us busting a gut others slacking off because they know others will pick up the pieces.

My first lot was Thistle who was going out to play on the grass. He isn't a massive fan of the surfaced gallops so spends 90% of his time on turf and he loves it! A wee scoot round the mares field "oi! Little twat! Broncing is not a movement required at this level!" Nothing big just broncing enough to call it a bronc but not enough to call it a buck. I am glad he is in good form with himself. Then we head off up the grass straight with Digs in tow. "We go zoooooomies!" Thistle said. "Not quite sunshine, we have more work to do so just you settle down and pace yourself" I replied. Did he listen? Did he heck! He pulled twice as hard up the last half of the gallop then wouldn't pull up! At least you can keep swinging round the field which is kind of what we were going to be doing anyway. So we get rejoined by Digs and head off down to the bottom of the fields to come up the S bend. This is the one Thistle loves best! You go up the side of the wee tyres, swing left handed at the cross over by the chicken farm field then do a big sweeping loop up to the right round the edge of the schooling field and back to the top of the gallop. As soon as Thistle realised what we were doing he was bouncing sideways and once given the go ahead he leapt into a strong canter. Digs was 3 lengths ahead of us as we went round the cross over. I gave Thistle a pat down the neck and made Zoom Zoom sounds at him - like a race car - neeeeeeeerrrrrooooouuuuuummmmm! And within a few strides we had flown past Digs and left him 4 lengths! Thistle if one of these horses you have to ride like a 5yo kid playing cowboys and indians! He loves the craic! The more you play about the more he gives you and he doesn't realise how hard he is working when doing it.

Second lot was Big Bad Boris! He was trotting as he ran 2 days before and won! It was the most surreal win though as he dead heated and it took the stewards aaaaggggessss to decide the result! The 2 horses crossed the line nose to nose, neither jockey could say who won and as it's only the winners who are allowed back into the winners enclosure just now we both hung around on the track waiting for the result call. It didn't come. So after a few minutes I said why don't we both head back up to the paddock and let the jockeys weigh in then at least when they call the result either one of us is close enough to the winners post. So we walked round on the grass in the paddock and still no result. By this point we were thinking they had to dead heat it as it would have been obvious otherwise. 15mins later an official came out to send us back to the stable yard as they were taking so long. Just as we both got to the edge of the paddock "Bing bong the result of the last race is declared as a dead heat" and with that we all gave a laughing cheer and headed into the winners circle to get the pics of both horses under the winners post. It's such a rare thing that we had to stand the horses side by side! Big Bad Boris was all ears pricked and smiles then he went to take a chunk out of the other horses face with his teeth πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚ the Coltherd's had the other winner and you could honestly not have a nicer family run unit in racing to share the podium with!

So yeah trotting Big Bad Boris was his usual self!

Over to the other yard to canter Big Midnight 2x up the woodchip and he is in good form with himself, he has started his joggy, snatchy nonsense on the way home when he decides people aren't walking fast enough for his liking and when he snatches he just about takes your arm out of it's socket!

Riding over I headed back to yard 1 (yes I end up spending a fortune on fuel ...) to clip this weekends runners. And this is where thing's started to go wrong!

First up was Swift. He is an unknown quantity as we haven't had him long so I had never clipped him before. Turned the clippers on and he turned to jelly at the back of the box. Great. I didn't have time to sedate him (withdrawal periods before racing suck!) So I popped ear plugs in him and he was ok. Then I got to the tickly bits ... that was a no go! So I put a twitch on him. This worked fabulously well! I got the rest of him done not a problem! I honestly HATE twitching them for more than their heads but sometimes needs must and next time he needs done he will be sedated with plenty of time before his next race. I literally had the last 3in of his lower jaw to do on one side when he swung his head away from me, knocked it into the hay rack, crapped himself and shot backwards and up. Then his front foot clipped my head on the way back down .... so that was that! Clippers went one way, horse went another terrified at the back of the box I spun away and stottered into the door, out the door and to the point on the wall where the extension cable was plugged in to switch the hole thing off. Handily there was a bale of shavings there too which I gracefully plonked my arms onto and then my head on my arms as I called out for assistance. I knew there were other people in the barn and Fiona came to see what was up. As she darted towards me I sent her off to the horse instead as he was still shaking at the back of the box, twitch on, ear plugs still in. Fiona is good when it comes to things like this. She doesnt go in and blame the horse, she calmly sorts the situation, gives the horse a reassuring pat and pops him back in his own box with a rug on.

By this point blood starts dripping down my ear. Lots of it. Whoops! I feel absolutely fine but one of the other women tries to insist she is taking me to A&E. I protest as I was honestly fine I just needed something to stem the bleeding. One of the yard lads spots the blood and goes straight to the first aid kit and starts rooting about. "Just chuck me a wad of cotton wool and it will be fine" I said. "There's none in here, only silly little bandages" was his response. "Shift" I said as I reached behind him and grabbed the bag we have for cleaning the horses cuts, pulled some out and held it to my head. Ute is still flapping about going to A&E. I am still sure I am not. Until I realise just how much blood was running out of my scalp then I agreed to go. Grudgingly. Whilst she went to get her keys I went to give the poor horse a pat. He really didn't do anything wrong or go out of his way to hurt me. Wrong place wrong time situation. I rung through to the office to say what had happened and of course Scu doesn't listen to things correctly or pay much attention and so the chinese whispers were that I had been kicked in the head by a horse and probably needed major surgery on my face ... πŸ€¦β€β™€οΈ

So I am bundled up to A&E where I insist that I will be fine to be left and my sister would come pick me up when I am done. Honestly I have sat in that waiting room for over 4 hours before with other people. No need for them to hang around. I wasn't concussed, I didn't have a headache etc. The wound just wouldn't stop bleeding. I got seen by the check over nurse almost instantly as it was a head wound but given that I was in no immediate danger I could sit and wait a while no bother. An hour and a half later I got sent through to be patched up. I got a 2nd year junior dr who was good at his job ... until he had to go and ask the nurse if glue would be enough or should he pop a few stitches in! πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚ Whilst he was cleaning it he realised it was deeper than first thought and you could see my skull! How awesome is that!?!? I did ask if he could take a pic of it for me as I couldn't see it given it was at the back of my head but alas he was not allowed to! I am a small bit gutted! Anywho! I walked out with 2 stitches and some glue along with strict instructions not to wash my hair for 24 hours as the glue would dissolve otherwise. Great ... 24 hours of rock solid, blood soaked hair ... blergh!

And of course I couldn't cope with that so my hair made it to 6am before I washed it! 3 rounds of shampoo it took to get the water to run clean of blood! And now I can feel that it has bled again ... maybe should have waited and let the glue do it's job properly ... ah well! There's still 2 stitches holding it together! The stitches are to come out in 7 days and when I mentioned that was convenietly when the vet was next in the yard the Dr promptly said "I will pretend I didn't hear that!" I would take then out myself but I can't see the back of my head πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚

So yeah the day didnt exactly go to plan! But in over a decade of clipping over 150 clipsclips season this is the first time I have done something that requires more than just a swob and some duct tape πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚ honestly if I didn't love my hair so much I would have cleaned it with hibiscrub, popped some intrasite in it, a wee bit of melolin to cover it then taped on with duct tape! Wouldnt have bothered with A&E!

Today my head is absolutely fine but my backside is KILLING me! I must have pulled the muscle when twisting away from the horse! Only I could gwt clocked on the head by a hoof and come away with a sore arse!

Bid Bad Boris is in the green - no 4! So so close! Whilst I would say Boris won given that more of his nose is on the white line they did definitely make the right call in a dead heat.
Screenshot_20201028-150556_Gallery.jpg

Blood soaked mess!
Screenshot_20201028-150618_Gallery.jpg

2 winners
Screenshot_20201028-152152_Gallery.jpg

Grrrr! My win!
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RHM

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29 January 2019
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592
Ouch! I’ve had four stitches in my head so I can sympathise with the ridiculous amount of blood that covers you! Good luck getting a hat back on πŸ€¦β€β™€οΈ
 

scotlass

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19 January 2009
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526
Hope you're feeling better soon. Head injuries are a nightmare - so many blood vessels make stopping bleeding difficult even with small wounds. Just watch for delayed concussion.

Boris is in brilliant form, aside from trying to eat Graystown. Also a lovely run from my other favourite, Mint Gold.

The yard's had a great couple of weeks. I hope it continues.
 

Elf On A Shelf

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28 February 2011
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12,668
A hat would help for next time clipping young flighty tbs. Hope head injury heals quickly.
Technically I was wearing a hat - a baseball cap ... but yes the sensible thing to do would be to put on a hard hat. Hindsight is a wonderful thing and this is the first time in over 1,000 racehorses clipped that I have had a head injury. I am very lucky it is a minor injury.
 

Elf On A Shelf

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Joined
28 February 2011
Messages
12,668
Hope you're feeling better soon. Head injuries are a nightmare - so many blood vessels make stopping bleeding difficult even with small wounds. Just watch for delayed concussion.

Boris is in brilliant form, aside from trying to eat Graystown. Also a lovely run from my other favourite, Mint Gold.

The yard's had a great couple of weeks. I hope it continues.
It's been a grest couple of months! The pool money we get in December should be fairly decent this time around! Even if BoJo only got Β£1900 for winning the other day πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚

Mint has been a revelation over fences. We always knew he would be better for them but at the moment he is exceeding expectation!
 

Yeomans

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14 November 2013
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146
Location
Kent
So love reading your posts, we get to read what goes on behind all the scenes before a horse gets to race and I think that it is hard and tiring work but obviously you love it, so have a couple of days off (bet you wont) and recharge your head.:)
 

Elf On A Shelf

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28 February 2011
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12,668
Well I do hope you get that last 3” of jaw hair done before the race 🀣🀣🀣
πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ€£

I'm sure it will survive and not over heat with it left in place this time round πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚
 
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