People have been saying there were some virus problems in Newmarket but today Saeed bin Suroor has confirmed his horses are coughing and have been for a good part of a month. Apparently he is not alone and he is quoted as saying "Most have been coughing. You can see it all over Newmarket. I have been here for 22 years and this is the worst thing like that to happen here." To those who have been around for a bit longer than that will remember the virus ridden years of the '60s and '70s when people had to learn what to do. Peter Walwyn was totally decimated by a virus he got in 1979 and the result for him was that he lost a lot of good horses and one could argue his jockey. One minute he was the hero the next minute he was zero. It hasn't seemed such a problem recently but I'm sure some of Henry Cecil's problems from 2000 to 2008 were the result of a virus too. However this year it seems to have come back with a vengeance after seeming to be controllable. Horses can appear on top of their game one day yet the next run in a race and fall away to nothing. The only thing to do is to shut up shop and sit it out. Suroor will run his first runner this week since the 6th August when a hot favourite finished almost last. We must all wish him well as this virus (whatever it is) is an insidious thing.