HURSLEY HAMBLEDON – Sunday 3rd December 2017
Secretary: Mrs Victoria Cobden
Address: The Bungalow, Westbury Manor Farm, West Meon, Peterfield, Hants GU32 1ND
Contact Details Tel: 01730 829313 Mob: 07721 488953
Entries to: The Point to Point Racing Co Ltd
Entries close: Monday 27th November 2017 12.30pm
Races: Hunt, Ladies Open, Mens Open, Restricted, CA Members Conditions, Open Maiden
First Race: 11.30am
Hursley Hambledon 2017 preview
The first of the seven scheduled meetings to be held at Larkhill, near Salisbury takes place this coming Sunday and is the curtain raiser for a new point-to-point season in the Wessex area in which 22 meetings will take place between December and May 2018 covering the area between the edges of Exmoor to Salisbury Plain. Always a good day out for all of the family the new season will see a number of changes with two leading personalities namely Jack Barber and Bryony Frost joining the professional ranks as NH trainer and NH jockey respectively. Therefore there are opportunities for contenders for leading trainer and lady rider in the area and it will be interesting to see who takes up the challenge. A good entry of 82 horses have been received for the 6 scheduled races with some real quality about the entries in the two Open Races with racing due to start at 11.30am.
The opening race, the Hunt Members, has attracted an entry of four horses of which three are owned by long- time supporter of the Hursley Hambledon Julie Butler and of these One More Tune formerly trained by Philip Rowley and the winner of a Mixed Open at Chaddesley Corbett last season looks the pick. Oscar the Myth has not been seen on a racecourse since June 2014 so preference is given to Swallowshide trained by James Young and who will be ridden by Bradley Paris-Crofts. Although he did not win last season he was placed in two Hunter Chases and a repeat of that form ought to be good enough.
The Ladies Open follows and the stand out entry is the 2014 Paddy Power Gold Cup winner Caid du Berlais. The winner of two chases and a Hurdle when trained by Paul Nicholls he is now is the care of Rose Loxton who does well with her charges at Larkhill. Likely to be ridden by Harriet Tucker who works for Paul Nicholls he must have every chance on his point-to-point debut. Likely opponents include Expedite the winner of two Hurdle races the last for Ben Pauling, Qrackers who won at Eyton-on-Severn last season, the evergreen Richmond and Western Diva upon whom Claire Hardwick won three Ladies races last season. The last named is most likely to give Caid du Berlais the most to do in a fascinating race.
The Mens Open sponsored by Moore Blatch Solicitors has a strong content amongst the 12 entries. Monsieur Gibraltar also trained by Rose Loxton and to be ridden by Lorcan Williams has the best form amongst those that have previously raced between the flags with easy victories at Milborne St Andrew and Ston Easton to his name as well as two Hunter Chases victories. Keltus also previously trained by Paul Nicholls ought to come on for his run at Ottery St Mary and may challenge Monsieur Gibraltar. Of the newcomers to point-to-pointing Ardkilly Witness has four successes to his name under rules and was placed in last season’s Royal Artillery Gold Cup at Sandown, The Caller has three victories when trained by Warren Greatrex and Tutchec who won five chases when trained by Nicky Richards are all of interest. Broadway Symphony the winner of his only race last season and Attimo the winner of the three chases for Sam England also come into the mix. Monsieur Gibraltar is the selection in a competitive looking race.
The Restricted race has attracted 17 entries and local trainer Richard Bandey has two of these namely Magic Symphony and Victoria Hill. The first named, the winner of a sixteen strong Maiden race at the course in April certainly has claims whereas Victoria Hill was only seen once at Black Forest Lodge in January. Chester Copperpot is another course winner and if his jumping can hold up then he must have chances for another local trainer Stuart Penny. Ballycash the winner of an Irish point-to-point and more recently trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies for Dai Walters is an interesting recruit. Kayley Woollacott has two entries also with the ex -Seamus Mullins trained Coco Live and the easy Ottery St Mary winner Pointview Gale. With the benefit of a run already under his belt Pointview Gale is taken to follow up.
The Countryside Alliance Club Members Conditions race has an entry of 14 horses with another winner from Ottery St Mary namely Moreece likely to be amongst the principal contenders. Fortune Bound was another good winner at Larkhill for owner Anna Reed and trainer Richard Bandey last April and should be on the short list. Broadway Symphony also holds an entry for this race and this looks easier than the Mens Open. Minim Mouse was very consistent last season winning two of her four starts for trainer Chloe Newman and Bedrock Fred has a good record around Larkhill for owner El Tanner. Trainer Sally Alner has a tremendous record around Larkhill and her entry Thereyaresee owned by Bill Dupont already boasts three course victories. He is taken to make it number four on his seasonal debut.
The final race the Open Maiden has attracted the biggest entry of 26 horses and with a safety factor of 18 there is the possibility that the race will divide on the day. Of those with form three to consider are Festival Dawn placed in two maidens for owner Nick Sutton last season, Irish Legionnaire for trainer Richard Bandey and Ober Water for New Forest trainer James Young. However it would be no surprise to see the winner coming from a newcomer to point-to-pointing with Sophie Lacey’s representative Coningsby, Richard Bandey’s Bastante, Jade Barber’s first runner as a point-to-point trainer Three in One, Stuart Penny’s Ivebeentold, Tom Weston’s The Late Legend and Guy Disney’s Shanroe Tic Tec all worthy of consideration. Sally Alner has the ex- Philip Hobbs placed hurdler Swincombe Toby entered and he might be the answer.
Larkhill Racecourse is to be found 5m NW of Amesbury, Nr A303, A345 and A360 – Postcode SP4 8QT. First Race 11.30 am. Entry Costs £10 per person.
1. One More Tune ridden by Rilly Goschen
2. Swallowshide ridden by Bradley Paris- Crofts
3. Pipes at Midnight ridden by Josh Cameron
3 Ran. Distances Head and 10 lengths Time 6min 32
1. Caid du Berlais ridden by Harriet Tucker
2. Bedrock Fred ridden by Katy Lyone
3. Dunnicks Skipper ridden by Lucy Mager
5 Ran Distances 15 lengths and 4 lengths Time 6 min 08
1. Monsieur Gibraltar ridden by Lorcan Williams
2. Keltus ridden by Conor O’Shea
3. Caspian Piper ridden by Will Biddick
7 Ran Distances 2 lengths and 6 lengths Time 6min 07
1. Ballycash ridden by Jordan Williams
2. Rakasba ridden by Matthew Fielding
3. Hardy Morning ridden by Zak Baker
10 Ran Distances 12 lengths and 10 lengths Time 6 min 13
Club Members Conditions
1. Fortune Bound ridden by Martin McIntyre
2. Princely Player ridden by Jake Bament
3. Thereyarsee ridden by Lorcan Williams
9 Ran Distances Neck and 6 lengths Time 6 min 11
Open Maiden (Division One)
1. Irish Legionnaire ridden by Martin McIntyre
2. Swincombe Toby ridden by Lorcan Williams
3. The Late Legend ridden by Will Biddick
10 Ran Distances Neck and 15 lengths Time 6 min 17
Open Maiden (Division Two)
1. Coningsby ridden by Tommie O’Brien
2. Three in One ridden by Gordon Treacy
3. Delineate ridden by Zak Baker
10 Ran Distances 1 length and 8 lengths Time 6 min 16
There was some really close finishes at the opening Wessex Point to Point meeting held at Larkhill last Sunday where the racing was of a high standard and racegoers had the bonus of an extra race when the Maiden race had to be divided because the number of entries exceeded the safety factor. The highlights of the meeting were training doubles for Rose Loxton from Ditcheat and Richard Bandey from Tadley, a first training winner for Laura Bradley who is based at Bramdean and a riding double for jockey Martin ‘Fly’ McIntyre.
The meeting began with the combined Hursley Hambledon and New Forest Hunts race where Swallowshide ridden by Bradley Paris-Crofts for Brockenhurst trainer James Young looked to have the race in the bag having jumped the last better than his rival One More Tune and quickly established a clear lead on the run-in. However his stride shortened nearing the post and Rilly Goschen galvanised her ride One More Tune to get up to win the race by an official head. Rilly was scoring her 150th career winner overall including 19 victories under Rules in a long career which started at Cotley in May 1991 aboard E Zoe Mou for John Dufosee.
Celebrating in the winners enclosure afterwards trainer Laura Bradley originally from Portsmouth was saddling her first point-to-point runner having taken on the training of owner Julie Butler’s horses. Laura principally provides hirelings for hunting and hacking in the Alresford area.
Julie also from Alresford who is a well -known Farming and Equine specialist Chartered Accountant has long been a supporter of the Hursley Hambledon and she looks to have acquired a useful prospect in One More Tune. Bought at a recent Ascot sale whilst Julie was on her iPad he had good form for his previous stable so it was not a total surprise to see him win the race.
Rose Loxton sent out the winners of the two Open races with Caid du Berlais winning the Ladies race and Monsieur Gibraltar winning the Mens race. With principal rival Richmond unseating Lucy Turner at the third last Caid du Berlais strolled home to an easy victory to give his young pilot Harriet Tucker her fourth career win and the first for Rose. The winner of the Paddy Power Gold Cup in 2014 the horse had rather lost his way under rules and connections thought that a spell of point-to-pointing might rekindle his enthusiasm. Harriet who works for Paul Nicholls rides the gelding in her lunch break and described him as ‘very keen all the way round’ and ‘definitely the best horse she has sat on in a race’. A Hunter Chase campaign may be considered for him.
Monsieur Gibraltar ridden by usual rider Lorcan Williams stayed on well to beat another former Paul Nicholls inmate Keltus by two lengths in the Mens Open. Described by Rose as being ‘very laid back’ he is ridden in all his work by Lorcan with whom he has an excellent partnership. He is next likely to be seen in the opening Hunter Chase of the season at Taunton with the Aintree Foxhunters as a long term goal.
Ballycash was an easy winner for Caerphilly owner/trainer Emlyn Parry in the Restricted race partnered by Jordan Williams. Paying his first ever visit to Larkhill racecourse the 66 year old retired teacher explained that he does all of the work himself on the six year old Kalanisi gelding bought out of a selling hurdle in June at Ffos Las when previously having been owned by Dai Walters. Emlyn did say that he had been to Larkhill once before as a teacher when he had brought a party of students to the military camp!
Martin McIntyre and trainer Richard Bandey then combined to win the next two races the first being Fortune Bound for Isle of Wight owner Anna Reed in the Club Members Conditions race. Described by his trainer as being ‘mentally better’ than last season he had a tussle with Princely Player ridden by Jake Bament on the run-in before winning by a neck. Having only won a Restricted race last season this was a step up for the winner and he ought to be able to follow up in an Intermediate race with the goal of the Intermediate Final at Cheltenham being on the radar.
Trainer and rider followed up in the first division of the Open Maiden when Irish Legionnaire also won by a neck over main rival Swincombe Toby ridden by Lorcan Williams. Placed on several occasions last season owner Mark Burton felt that his gelding deserved this success although his ideal trip is still one he is trying to work out. Another who has benefited from a good summer Mark explained that the gelding has bulked up and is now much stronger.
The final race of the day, the second division of the Maiden, was won by the unraced Coningsby owned and bred by Lady Cobham and trained by Sophie Lacey. After Gracious Prince had led the field for two miles the winner and the runner –up Three in One ridden by Gordon Treacy for trainer Jade Barber battled out the finish with a length separating them at the line. The winner who is a half -brother to Flights is the third generation that Lady Cobham has owned with his dam Motcombe winning two chases for Robert Alner and his grandam Cooks Lawn being placed in five hurdle races.