Secretary: Katherine Cooke
Address: Brook Farm, Bath Road, Upper Langford, Bristol, BS40 5DN
T: 01934 853330 (No Fax)
Entries: Mrs Lucy Kenny
Address: Headweir House, Wick, Stogursey, Bridgwater, Somerset, TA5 1TL
T: 01278 653367
F: 01278 588084
Entry Fee: £30 for a single race, £15 per additional race same horse (Hunt Members £10)
or enter online at: www.pointtopoint.co.uk
Entries Close: Sunday 22nd May, 8.00 pm
Races: Members - 4,5,6 year old Maiden (2m4f) - Open Maiden - Mixed Open - PPORA Novice Riders - Restricted
This Sunday sees the fourth and final meeting of the season at Cothelstone and the West Somerset Vale have been rewarded with a healthy entry of 103 including some eye-catching horses amongst them.
The seven race card kicks off with the Hunt Members and there could be an interesting clash between 3 horses by the same stallion Classic Cliché. A Real Cliché for Michael Weir, took his maiden here really nicely last year and ground conditions may not have been in his favour so far this year. He is slightly favoured over Mountain Cliché who comes here after a narrow win at Stafford Cross last time out in a Restricted race a month ago for trainer Nick Dawe. Classic Edition from the Marie McGuiness yard is unraced but should not be discounted. The quartet is made up by Ailanthus who has been off a while. You have to go back to 2013 when she followed up her maiden win at the Cotley with a Restricted win next time at Littlewindsor. Now with Louise Cabble, she may just need the run.
The first maiden is the shorter over 2.5 miles and Nikki Frost has 4 entered including Carumba and Dotties Power. The former has course form in a 3rd here behind Wy Worry and filled the same spot last week behind Bleu Et Or at Upcott Cross, one in front of stable companion Dotties Power. Teresa Clark’s Marguerite St Juste also ran and finished a good second having given the winner something to think about some way out. Kayley Woollacott has Miner Massini who debuted here in March in what has subsequently turned out to be a decent maiden behind Get on the Yager. Widlake Kier Star had run well to finish 3rd to Jonimo at Stafford Cross on his second run and may be forgiven last time out here when he made a bad mistake at the 15th. Wonga Swinger is also of interest most especially on his second last time here to Wy Worry when he had several of these behind him and may go one better today. Mutashabek has more of the alphabet to his form than most but it could be deceptive and this former Caroline Keevil-trained gelding could be worth a look.
In the second maiden, Desert Roe wasn’t beaten far on his debut when he finished second at the North Ledbury when sent off favourite. Next time out he was hugely unlucky when unseating at the last at Howick when looking the possible winner and he was again hampered last time when falling. If his confidence isn’t dented, then he may pay to follow. Kisha Lad finished second to Rocknrolldixie here last time one place ahead of Village Whispers while the ever consistent Rainbow Stripes would be a deserving winner after several placings this season including being beaten by the minimum at Milborne St Andrew in March. The mare She’s Dapper, has a similar profile to Rainbow Stripes and is trained by Matt Griffiths. The Tim Vaughan trained Renfrew has just the one run at the Banwen Miners and he showed prominently for a long way. He may well improve.
The Mixed Open has several of note and the Barber yard have 2 to chose from – Ballybough Gorta, who just failed to get up on the line at Bratton Down last time out behind What About Will; and the winner of this race last year, Kostaquarta who was also just denied at Bratton Down last time out. The wonderfully game Champagne Rosie has been in sparkling form this year for trainer Stuart Penny and won impressively here last time out (Theatre Evening well held in 5th) to add to an earlier course win. The James Young owned and trained mare Marlpit Oak also comes here in good form and is seeking a hatrick. Three-time Irish hurdle winner, Really Unique won with any amount in hand last time at Bredwardine and may be starting to enjoy his new job pointing. Ultra-game The Wealerdealer lost out in controversial circumstances last week at Upcott Cross (Ubaldo des Menhies back in 3rd) but has been in good form this season.
This season’s current Leading horse on 8 wins, Premier Portrait would be long odds-on were he to turn up but he does hold multiple entries elsewhere. Top Chief provided young Chris Barber with his first winner and the partnership are reunited after the horse unseated in a Ladies Open last time at Bratton Down. Former Ascot hurdle winner, Regal Presence may have appreciated the quicker ground last time when winning at Larkhill while Welsh trained Tiger Rag deserves to finally get his head in front after several good placings this season.
The finale, the Restricted, sees the Jack Barber Vards who won nicely on debut at Littlewindsor only to be beaten at odds-on by Our Chief next time out back at the same track. However with Our Chief subsequently winning the Restricted Final at Stratford last week, this form looks out of the top drawer and he could take some beating. Welsh mare, Thatcher’s Brook could pose a danger after only going down by a head at Holnicote following an easy debut win the time before. Last time out Wy Worry showed his liking for this track with a comfortable win over Wonga Swinger.
Racing starts at 2pm and is preceded by Pony Racing at 1pm.
The Pony Racing which preceded the racing, proved as popular as ever. Jack Greenhaigh took the first 13.2 race aboard Just Shane while in the second for that height, Veno Star and Fergus Gillard just got up to beat Churchill on the line. Fergus also took the 14.2 race on Hawkesfield Flyer and must be a jockey to keep an eye on once he graduates from ponies.
A glorious sunny day and a beautifully prepared course ensured a great turn out of both horse and human at Cothelstone on Sunday for the final meeting this season for the Wessex Area, hosted by the West Somerset Vale. For Claire Cook it was an extremely memorable day winning her first race as a trainer with her only horse, Sammy Blade. Claire who lists stunt rider and carriage driver on her CV, managed to juggle setting up Pony Club Mini Camp, coping with poorly children, a husband with genuine flu and riding 2 horses around Pontispool One Day Event in the morning before catching up with Sammy Blade to saddle him for the 3m Maiden. Given a masterly ride by Sean Houlihan, the horse who becomes claustrophobic confirmed the promise he had shown earlier in the season with a comfortable 6 length success after leading for most of the race. A stunned but delighted Claire explained how she had bought the horse after a day at Cheltenham watching Mad Moose refuse to race. Friends who now own Sammy Blade and make up the Mad Moose Partnership offered connections of said horse a home to event him, but when their offer was rejected, Claire found Sammy Blade on an Internet site being sold by his trainer having been out on loan as a hunter. A large dose of TLC which included trips to the beach have seen a transformation. He should continue to progress.
Jockey, owner and trainer Katie Bellamy also had plenty to smile about when her Rusty Nail pulled off a shock result in the Novice Riders race. With plenty of the field struggling to stay upright, it dawned on Katie that she was in with a chance coming over the last. Giving Rusty Nail a slap down the shoulder, “He just went whoosh!” explained Katie. It was only Katie’s second completion in a race and this horse was recommended to her by her work colleague, Bryony Frost. Katie, who works for Jack Barber, gets up at 4am to look after him and admits she has had to learn to ride the hard way. Nick Lawton took a crashing fall mid-race and it was good to see him later sitting up in the ambulance with only suspected broken ribs.
There was a fair bit of controversy surrounding the outcome of The Whealerdealer’s last race at Upcott Cross and the horse rewarded connections by taking the Mixed Open from Theatre Evening with the game Champagne Rosie in 3rd. Trainer Ian Chanin felt his brother Tom who piloted The Whealerdealer had given him an excellent ride. He hadn’t given any instructions to Tom who felt the stronger pace suited him and after travelling well, the horse gamely held off Theatre Evening on the run-in. Ian said the horse had a huge amount of ability but needed to always “win” his gallops at home so they worked him with an Appaloosa to ensure this always happened and kept the gelding’s confidence levels up.
Pete Ponting’s Mutashabek confirmed promise his trainer suspected with a comfortable 8 length success in the shorter of the Maidens. This beautifully bred horse had had plenty of hard luck stories recently but once jockey Rex Dingle gave him a squeeze at the open ditch, he knew he’d win. On ground that suited perfectly, Mutashabek had plenty in hand over the newcomer, Kaiden Michael who ran a promising race in second for trainer Tim Vaughan. Bloodstock agent, Mel Smith who had purchased the horse privately for Ponting, was present to greet the winner.
Key People had resented the application of a tongue tie last time at Stratford but its removal for the Restricted race, saw a return to earlier form when he easily accounted for Thatcher’s Brook, the pair finishing a distance clear of the remainder. Owner Sherree Lean had booked the services of her Hunter Chase jockey Will Biddick and he said the horse was much happier than he had been last time.
While the Hunt Members only attracted Mountain Cliché for trainer Nick Dawe resulting in a walk-over, the Pony Racing which preceded the racing, proved as popular as ever. Jack Greenhaigh took the first 13.2 race aboard Just Shane while in the second for that height, Veno Star and Fergus Gillard just got up to beat Churchill on the line. Fergus also took the 14.2 race on Hawkesfield Flyer and must be a jockey to keep an eye on once he graduates from ponies.