Matt Chapman’s Good, Bad and Ugly from the world of horse racing this week


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It’s the calm before the York storm racing wise, but don’t think for one minute racing stories are thin on the ground.

So who makes my Good, Bad Ugly column this week?


Credit: Marie Fitzgerald


Oisin Murphy is now well on his way to being champion jockey for the first time as he stretched his lead to seven over the talented Danny Tudhope before racing today.

That is good news for this column and racing.

Murphy connects with all age groups with his talent, wit and charm. He talks about breeding in an entertaining way and knows the formbook backwards.

He also knows the time of day and how to connect with people and say something without saying anything, the secret for anyone dealing with broadcasters and journalists.

Murphy is so important to all of us. Cheer him home. He’s a special kid.

SATURDAY IN PICS The best snaps from Shergar Cup day at Ascot





A Grade 2 mares’ chase at the Cheltenham Festival in 2021. If you made this decision, stand up and be counted.

I could not think of a more awful and desperate race to put on at the home of the ‘National Hunt Olympics’.

Grade 2 tells you all you need to know. It’s not very classy. A Grade 1 mares’ chase would not be very classy either. But more importantly it’s a further dilution of excellence.

Hang your heads in shame Cheltenham. You literally have no imagination whatsoever. So sad. Actually, remembering a certain French Derby winner – Sad, Mad And Bad.


Luckily, reports are that both racing couple and jockeys Tom Marquand and Hollie Doyle are alright.

But by all accounts there were desperate scenes on Friday evening in their household after the excellent Doyle pipped possible future champion Marquand for the first time at Brighton.

Prior to racing Marquand had always defeated his better half in a driving finish. But when Nervous Nerys landed the opener that all changed as the roles were reversed.

Doyle had revealed beforehand that Marquand can get in a bit of a grump when losing.

I remember my mum throwing an egg at my dad once – let’s hope it got no worse that and the law did not need to be scrambled!

Horse racing jockey’s Frankie Dettori and Paul Townend face off in driving test battle

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