Secretary: Mrs Katy Davis
Address: Honeysuckle House, Lower Fifehead, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, DT10 2AP
T: 01258 817151
M: 07899 871623
Entries: Mrs Kate Sutherland
Address: Hill Dairy, Piddlehinton, Dorset, DT2 7TG
M: 07971 589333
Entry Fee: £30 for a single entry, £15 per additional race same horse (Hunt Members £10). BACS payments can be made to Lloyds TSB, Sortcode 30-92-69, Account No: 00323281
Entries Close: Monday 26th January @ 12 noon
Races: 4,5,6 & 7 year old Maiden (2m4f) - Members - Open Maiden - Restricted - Ladies Open - Mens Open - CA or PPORA Club Members Conditions Race for Novice Riders
Top class Hunter Chaser Harbour Court can return to winning ways in Sunday’s South Dorset Men’s Open at Milborne St Andrew. The Alan Hill-trained nine-year-old, winner of Cheltenham’s Connolly’s Red Mills Intermediate Final, Stratford’s John Corbet Cup and fifth in the Cheltenham Foxhunter, showed his well-being by finishing a close runner-up to Brackloon High at Cottenham in December. Brackloon High franked the form with a Higham win last weekend. Wadebridge specialist Working Title and Claire Hitch’s pair Minella Fifty and Batu Ferringhi – a winner on the 2013 corresponding card – are three other contenders. The danger is Raffa, who has surged through the pointing ranks with three wins this season, including a Wadebridge Open victory with Minella Fifty well held in third.
Minella Fifty is among the 11 entries for the Ladies’ Open and must be considered if Hitch opts for this engagement. The Stuart Penny-trained pair Quedillac and Trueflyingcolours are two more to consider. The suggestions are former top chaser Ghizao, who looked more amenable to restraint when third to Byerley Bear at Wadebridge and the Richard Bandey-trained Alskamatic, who had subsequent Heythrop winner Ballyjames back in third when runner-up to the prolific Current Event at Larkhill in December.
Evergreen 15-year-old Barneys Mate will get the vote if seeking a fourth win in the Novice Riders’ race, which has attracted 24 entries. The prolific Buckstruther, winner of 10 of his 12 point-to-points to date, Ghizao, Ampton runner-up Minella Theatre, and the Sam Drinkwater-trained pair Trouble Digger and Working Title also catch the eye. Ski Sunday, runner-up in the Fred Winter Hurdle at the 2009 Cheltenham Festival, was placed in two Hunter Chases last season and may give Barneys Mate the most to do.
Printing Blue won an Irish Maiden in June and will be supported if making his UK debut in the Restricted. Black Forest Lodge winner Railway Benefit was not disgraced when third behind the impressive Desert Queen at Wadebridge. The suggestions are Spuddler, absent since winning at Woodford in April 2012 and Impact Area, who rewarded his “outsider of three” supporters by taking the Royal Artillery Hunt race.
Balkato Des Bois and Maximus Maridius, who could represent the Tom Lacey/Sam Drinkwater combination and Jack Barber’s pair Charmix and Praetura may be four to choose from in the 2m-4f Maiden. The 3-mile Maiden will be run in two divisions. Barbury runner-up Brids Classic can go one better in Division 1. Village Mystic looks the one for Division 2.
2010 winner Gunner Be Quick may give supporters a run for their money in the Hunt race.
The course at Milborne St Andrew is just off the A354 midway between Blandford and Dorchester. First race: 12.00 noon. Admission is to either of two car parks at £20 or £25 per car with a reduction for single occupants; £5 for pedestrians.
South Dorset at Milborne St Andrew
Sunday 1 February 2015
Open Maiden 456&7yo, 2m4f (12 ran)
Hunt Members (7 ran)
Open Maiden (Div 1) (5 ran)
Open Maiden (Div 2) (8 ran)
Restricted (9 ran)
Ladies Open (5 ran)
Bonhams Mens Open (12 ran)
PPORA-CA Club Members (Nov Rdrs) (13 ran)
The Plantation Picnic Club’s Alskamatic goes straight to the Cheltenham Foxhunter after winning the South Dorset Ladies Open. The nine-year-old was prominent throughout under Claire Hart and forged clear when Chloe Newton brought market rival Ghizao through to challenge in the last half-mile. Alskamatic has now won four point-to-points, an Exeter hunter chase and finished runner-up in Cheltenham’s 2014 Connolly’s Red Mills Intermediate Point-to-Point Championship Series Final from his 19 races. “We’ve deliberately given him a light campaign of two points in advance of the Foxhunter,” said Kingsclere trainer Richard Bandey. “He qualified via last season’s hunter chases and hopefully he’ll get an automatic place in the starting line up. We would be delighted if he finished in the first 10, but it will be a marvellous sporting day out for the Club.”
Oxfordshire trainer Alan Hill took the training honours with a double with Bonhams Mens Open winner Harbour Court and Minella Theatre (Novice Riders’ race). The former, fifth in the 2014 Cheltenham Foxhunter, finally wore down Cock Of The Rock (Harry Cobden) after jumping the last six lengths in arrears in third place. “He looks well, he’s jumped super and he’s won, but he’s won ugly and that’s disappointing, as he’s a better horse than that. He actually looks like he needs a four-mile race at the moment,” admitted Alan. Minella Theatre regained the lead from Barneys Mate after the last to give Albert Chandler, who works for Alan, a second career success.
Royal Artillery Hunt race winner Impact Area continued his rapid rise through the ranks by taking the Restricted race. Harriet Besent’s nine-year-old grey gelding raced prominently under Louis Muspratt before drawing well clear over the final four fences.
Racecourse debutants took the two divisions of the 3-mile Maiden. The Jack Barber-trained five-year-old Charmix, a €3,000 French purchase in July, only needed to be pushed out by Will Biddick after leading four out in Division 1. “Will says they’ve gone no gallop so he had to get first run before one of the others did. Charmix is for sale now,” said Jack, now on the eight-winner mark for the season. Tom Lacey’s Village Mystic is also for sale after crossing the line with his head still in his chest under trainer Sam Drinkwater in Division 2. “He hasn’t been out of first gear today,” smiled Tom. “I bought him out of a field in Sussex and liked him so much I gave the owner the amount he asked for. I think he’s one of the best horses we’ve ever had and hope to sell him in the next few days.”
Rockmills Lad benefited from the application of a Grakle noseband to take the 2m-4f Maiden. “He wasn’t finishing his races over three miles but the Grakle noseband has aided his breathing and the shorter trip has helped him get home,” summed up New Forest owner-trainer Rob Sparks.
Turtle Boys, who showed the benefit of a first-time tongue tie, recorded his third Milborne St Andrew win when taking the Hunt race under Ben Clarke.