LIFE is good in the North. We all know that. But sometimes we need to remind the rest of the country just how good things are.

The British Horseracing Authority has got together with the racecourses at Musselburgh, Carlisle and Kelso to develop a showcase event to be staged in March next year. Go North Weekend will feature three days of valuable and competitive jump racing action, starting at Musselburgh on Friday March 20, before moving on to Kelso the next day and Carlisle on the Sunday of the weekend.

The cards at Musselburgh and Carlisle will feature the six finals of the Northern Lights Series, a programme of races with qualifiers at northern venues throughout the year. The Kelso programme will include the same high-value handicap races which will be broadcast live by ITV this year – on Saturday, March 23 – plus a £20,000 novice mares chase.

Several trainers from across the region have already committed to opening their doors, offering racegoers the opportunity to see behind the scenes. There’ll be trips to the gallops, around their yards and maybe even bacon sandwiches too.

It’s an important part of the initiative as the region, particularly the Scottish Borders, has a disproportionately high percentage of people with equestrian skills and knowledge. Forty years ago, the most powerful jumping stables were based predominately in Yorkshire. Yet nowadays much of the money invested in British bloodstock resides in the South.

If northern trainers are to compete with their southern counterparts, they need the firepower and the support of wealthy owners.

The North has relatively few representatives at Cheltenham’s Festival Trials Day today, a tell-tale sign of the current balance of power. But we’re optimistic we can make a mark with our selection, the Lucinda Russell-trained Forest des Aigles who runs in the colours of Ray Green – one of the biggest supporters of jump racing in Scotland. Russell’s stable is one of those which will be open for Go North Weekend, where visitors will be able to see 2017 Grand National winner One For Arthur.

The Racing Post has already agreed to sponsor the weekend – in order to encourage racing enthusiasts in the South to come up and participate. It’s hoped that the whole weekend can be a catalyst to stimulate the industry in the North – more customers for our talented trainers, more racing tourists from the South, and a healthy bit of encouragement for our local population to come and enjoy some really competitive racing at three fantastic venues.

Perhaps I’ll even be able to tip a winner too – although I’m making no promises. Life’s good in the North, but nothing is perfect!