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POLISHING. 23 April 1987. Touching Wood-Loveshine. Owner-James-Douglas Gordon.

Polishing raced out of two yards during a 39 race career, between 1991-1996.He was out of a Touching Wood mare who had six representatives on the racecourse, of which he could boast the best flat form, though his Ger Lyons trained half brother, Difficult Times was the better hurdler, achieving a Racing Post Rating of 132.

Polishing started out life in the Wetherby yard of Mrs P.A.Barker, and although he didn't race until July, as a four year old in 1991, he soon made up for lost time.He won at Newcastle in a 12 furlong maiden on his third start, earning an official BHA mark of 76, and although he couldn't win off that mark in handicap company in four further attempts, he did place twice.In November 1991 he was sent hurdling, and at the third attempt on Boxing Day, he got off the mark at Wetherby, then under a penalty on New Years Day 1992,he won again, at odds of 4/6,this time at Catterick. He next stepped up in class, finishing third at Kempton, 17 days later, before returning to Catterick in February for a handicap hurdle, where he won easily from a mark of 111.His last two runs of the 1991-1992- season were at the Cheltenham Festival where he finished tailed off in the Supreme, before going on to Aintree, to finish a very respectable third to Mick Easterby's Coulton, in the Grade 2 Novice Hurdle.

Polishing changed yards, and owners over the Summer, and made his debut for Micky at Newcastle in November 1992, when finishing forth under Peter Niven. He won at Wetherby a week later, taking his mark to a new high of 121, but lost his way on his next three starts, before winning again at Newcastle in March.He raced a further three times that season, showing a definite preference for Good, or Good to Firm ground, and also looking like three miles was now required.

On his return in November 1993 he finished second at Newcastle, but on his next three runs all on a softer surface, once again he failed to fire, until a return to good ground in March 1994, when he was third at Doncaster. He then took his chance in the 'Hamlet Cigars Gold Card Handicap Hurdle,' at the Cheltenham Festival, where he finished 20th, of the 30 runners, behind the Malcolm Jefferson trained Tindari. That race did him no harm, as he reappeared six days later, winning at Newcastle by four lengths.

His first race back, after his summer break in November 1994, was his chase debut at Hexham, where he finished third, but was beaten more than 44 lengths. A month later at Wetherby he once again showed us that chasing was not his game, when failing to complete.He raced a further three times, twice more over hurdles, but he failed to spark, before racing for the final time at Musselburgh, in January 1995, where he once again failed to complete over fences.

To keep up to date with all the latest happenings at Oakwood Stables, and Sharp Hill, click on 'NEWS' at www.mickyhammondracing.

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