Michael Dods : Racehorse Trainer

Denton Hall News

  • 17-Jan-2022: Latest News from Denton Hall Stables the home of Michael Dods Racing
  • 16-Jan-2022: Great to get off the mark for 2022 with Lady Lou landing odds of 80/1 at Southwell under Callum Rodriguez

TV cameras at Denton Hall ahead of racing restart

It was nice to have the BBC Look North cameras at Denton Hall this morning ahead of the restart of racing on Monday.

Business Editor Ian Reeve interviewed Michael, along with jockeys Connor Beasley and Callum Rodriguez, about plans for the resumption of the sport.

After the declarations today, we now have three runners at Newcastle on Monday: Dancin' Boy, Heath Charnock, and Twist of Hay.

Michael told the cameras: "It's been a frustrating time but we have to understand there were much worse things going on in the world.

"That said, the horses have to be looked after, so we've been busy, and the staff have worked hard, while social distancing and being careful."

Safety procedures at the yard were introduced well ahead of the official lockdown: "We saw it coming and when it arrived, we were ready," said Michael.

"Racing is a big industry and the owners have been very patient. We have to start off behind closed doors but at some stage it has to be opened up to owners or we'll lose them.

"Everyone in the industry has to work together and help each other so we can get the sport back on its feet. This isn't going to go away until we get a vaccine so we have to learn to live with it."

Michael praised his owners for their understanding, saying:
"You can't fault them because they've been paying to have their horses in training with no racing."

Connor and Callum spoke about the challenges facing jockeys but insisted that it would be "business as usual" as far as race riding is concerned.

There won't be saunas, showers or food at the courses, and the Newcastle weighing room has been redesigned so jockeys have cubicles.

Callum said: "Obviously, it's going to be very different without any crowds but we just have to adjust. Once we're out there on the track, I don't think it will affect anyone's racing riding technique.

"We all just have to be organised and continue to race in as safe a manner as possible. We all just have to do our best."

Connor added: "It's been tough and it was a real blow when it was announced that racing was being shut down, but we've adapted to the situation.

"Horses need a routine and we've been busy keeping them exercised and looked after.

"It'll be strange not being able use the sauna and showers to freshen up but, hopefully, in a few weeks' we'll all have got used to the new guidelines."

All being well, the report is scheduled to go out on Look North tonight (BBC 1 at 6.30pm)