ROYAL ARTILLERY – Saturday 27th January 2018
Secretary: Mr Alex Connell
Address: 9 Townsend, Chitterne All Saints, Warminster, Wilts BA12 0LF
Contact Details Tel: 01980 662529 Mob: 07771 503533
Entries Secretary: Mr P Hodson
Address: Amphora, Allington, Salisbury, Wilts SP4 0BW
Contact Details: Tel: 01980 610764 Mob: 07790 660071 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Entries to: The Entries Secretary or The Point to Point Racing Co Ltd (www.pointtopointentries.co.uk )
Entries close: Monday 22nd January 2018 12noon
Races: Hunt, 5yrs+ Open Maiden, Ladies Open, RA Members Conditions, Mens Open, Intermediate
First Race: 12noon
Larkhill stages their third meeting of the season when the Royal Artillery hold their point to point on Saturday. A good entry of 114 horses has been received for the six races where the forecast ground is expected to be good and possibly good to soft in places. The Hunt is delighted to be in receipt of sponsorship from long standing supporters of the sport Dodson and Horrell as well as Cordings of Piccadilly and Seamus Mullins Racing.
The opening race at 12.00 is the Hunt Members race where local trainer Sally Rawlins would appear to have a strong hand with two of the five entries. Course winner Sidbury Hill is scheduled to return from a nasty injury he suffered at Milborne St Andrew and on his best form he should be too good for his rivals. Sally also has entered Adrenalin Flight who should improve for his seasonal debut run and give Matthew Fielding another good ride. Impact Area another previous winner of this race would have strong claims if back to his best but he has shown little in his recent outings and his best days may be behind him.
The biggest entry of the day is the Open Maiden race where 31 horses are entered and with a safety factor of 18 this race may be divided on the day. The void race at the last meeting may hold clues for the winner of this race with Arcal Fifty, Swincombe Toby and Everyday Hero set to reoppose having been the principals in contention at the time the race was declared void. The booking of Tommie O’Brien for Arcal Fifty looks an interesting one. Others to consider are Ain’t No Limits who was an excellent second to a Tom Lacey 4 year old at the last meeting, Dragon de la Tour who was a promising second at Wadebridge, Goldencard who has been placed in two Irish point to points and is now owned by Tom Malone and Phar Island who will be making his debut for Sally Alner’s stable.
The Ladies Open may see a third course victory for the Rose Loxton trained Caid du Berlais who has won both his outings this season for his young rider Harriet Tucker. He demolished a strong field at the last meeting and a repeat of that form may be too good for his rivals. Course specialist Aikideau should run better than his seasonal debut when running out at the 15th fence and Mon Parrain may improve on his two outings this season for Page Fuller. Midnight Appeal runs well for his rider Charlotte Hawker and Little Chip is a consistent sort and may run into a place. Rose Loxton has also entered Monsieur Gibraltar in this race and if he is declared then the hint should be taken.
The Conditions race has attracted a good entry of 24 horses and this looks an open contest. Boygojumping was just beaten at the last meeting and may go one better. Out Now was placed in a Hunter Chase for David Maxwell last season but has now changed stables. Thereyarsee fell at the last meeting but has run well at Larkhill in the past and Little Cornham is very consistent and deserves another victory. Robin de Boss has run two good races this season and a chance is taken on him to give Jamie Hepburn a winner.
The Mens Open race looks a high quality event. The Coronation Gold Cup winner Brackloon High must be on the short list after his seasonal outing behind Cousin Pete at the last meeting where Monsieur Gibraltar finished second. The last named will be strongly fancied to resume winning ways but potential rivals in the shape of the highly talented Mr Mercurial from Sheila Crow’s stable and Man Of Steel from Alan Hill’s yard may prove the tougher opposition. Mike Felton has entered Bistouri d’Honore a winning Hurdler for Paul Nicholls and Trafalgar Rock was the winner of three Hurdle races for Dr Richard Newland. Jimmy the Jetplane won five races for Kim Bailey and was not disgraced on his point-to-point debut at Ampton. If Mr Mercurial is back to his best he will find this return to pointing easier than the Hunter Chases he ran in last season.
The meeting concludes with a tricky looking Intermediate race for which 24 horses have been entered. Irish Legionnaire is seeking his third course victory this season and is reportedly in good form at home. His stablemate Fortune Bound won well at the first Larkhill meeting and is clearly on the upgrade. Ballycash was an impressive winner of the Restricted race at the first meeting for Welsh owner/trainer Emlyn Parry and could easily follow up. The Well Road dead heated with Irish Legionnaire at the last meeting so is another to come into calculations along with Desert Roe who ought to have improved following his seasonal debut at Ottery St Mary. Jade Barber may introduce Blackwater Bramble who won a Maiden race in Ireland in April 2016 but has not been since. Richard Bandey’s preferred runner is chosen to continue the trainer’s good record at Larkhill.
Larkhill Racecourse is to be found 5m NW of Amesbury, Nr A303, A345 and A360 – Postcode SP4 8QT. First Race 12.00. Entry Costs £10 per person.
Race 1 Hunts Members
4 Ran 6 min 36
Distances 10 lengths and 8 lengths
Race 2 Maiden (Division 1)
10 Ran 6 min 38
Distances 7 lengths and 15 lengths
Race 3 Maiden (Division 2)
12 Ran 6 min 33
Distances 4 lengths and 20 lengths
Race 4 Ladies Open
5 Ran 6 min 36
Distances Head and 15 lengths
Race 5 Conditions Race
17 Ran 6 min 33
Distances 25 lengths and 2 lengths
Race 6 Mens Open
1 Brackloon High ridden by A Barlow
2 Bistouri D'Honore
3 Man of Steel
6 Ran 6 Min 40
Distances 7 lengths and 9 lengths
Race 7 Intermediate
11 ran 6 min 34
Distances 15 lengths and ¾ length
It was a generally wet and overcast day at Larkhill last Saturday when the going conditions at the Royal Artillery Hunt point-to-point were testing for horses and riders as well as spectators. Some horses relished the going most noticeably Thereyarsee who was a convincing winner of the Conditions Race and another course winner Brackloon High who won the Mens Open race. Other highlights were a first training success for Bea Coward and a welcome winner for long standing trainer Mike Daniell from near Upton-on-Severn
The meeting began with a surprise winner in the Hunt race when Delineate ran out a comfortable winner under Zak Baker for owner/trainer Godfrey Maundrell. Previously a maiden after 16 point to point starts she stayed on much better than her more fancied rivals Adrenalin Flight and Sidbury Hill and had 10 lengths in hand at the line. Bought by Godfrey as a three year old in Ireland the 9 year mare had been placed in a Bumper and a Hurdle as well as numerous placings in point-to-points and was not winning out of turn.
Arcal Fifty provided Bea Coward with her first ever winner as a trainer on only his second appearance for her in the First Division of the Maiden race. As his first race was the void race at the previous meeting when he was disputing the lead the result was not unexpected but it gave the 12 strong Barrow Street Racing Club much to celebrate afterwards as he was given an excellent ride by Tommie O’Brien to win by seven lengths. Following the instructions he was given to the letter the gelding was much too good for Cook The Books ridden by Gina Andrews. Tommie was booked by Will Shields one of the owners of the horse courtesy of Facebook having lost the services of the previous rider Jamie Thomas who was believed to have suffered a broken wrist. Bea who trains two horses at Barrow Street near Mere on the Somerset/Wiltshire border is a former work rider for Caroline Keevil and is the daughter of the well- known sculptor Sarah Coward.
Benjamin Leader named after the Victorian landscape painter was a welcome winner for Mike Daniell in the Second Division of the Maiden race. After Ain’t No Limits had unseated Sam Lee at the third last when still in front the race developed into a match between Benjamin Leader ridden by James Martin and Goldencard ridden by Will Biddick with the former winning by 4 lengths. The winner who is a half- brother to the ill-fated KIngscourt Native who was trained by Colin Tizzard is a home bred like many of Mike’s runners who reminisced in the winner’s enclosure about Kettles his dour stayer who won 4 races for him in the 1990’s. Mike was keen to give Max Comley credit for the work he has done with Benjamin Leader at home.
The Ladies race on paper looked like a guaranteed victory for Monsieur Gibraltar as his form was considerably better than his four rivals. However Storm Lantern made it a proper test and the favourite only wore his rival down in the final strides to win by a head and give his young rider Harriet Tucker her third winner of the season. Explaining the decision to run Monsieur Gibraltar in a Ladies race his trainer Rose Loxton said that’ he was being asked to carry huge weights in Mens Open races whereas Harriet could claim her 5 pound allowance as a Novice and reduce his weight to 10 stone 9 pounds’. Ideally he wants better ground than the soft ground he encountered when he goes Hunter Chasing.
The Conditions Race provided the biggest field (17 ran) and the easiest winner of the day in the form of Thereyarsee ridden by Lorcan Williams. Taking up the running at the 15th fence he drew further clear from his rivals and after a spectacular leap at the 2nd last he powered on to the line to finish twenty five lengths clear of his nearest pursuer Call Me Ben. Giving Sally Alner her first training success of the season on the horse that she rides at home owner Bill Dupont was thrilled with his gelding who was recording his fourth course victory at Larkhill.
Brackloon High was recording another win at Larkhill in the Mens Open race under usual pilot Andrew Barlow. Part owner Mark Barlow thought that the ground might be too soft for him but he proved to stay on better than his two closest rivals Bistouri D’Honore and Man of Steel. Although he won last year’s Coronation Gold Cup a repeat attempt might not be on the cards in view of the weight that Andrew would have to carry as this is below his usual weight and dieting did not agree with him in 2017.
A very competitive Intermediate concluded the meeting with Sarazen Bridge ridden by Nick Phillips impressively winning by fifteen lengths. Owned by equine physiotherapist Alice Dorman who is a friend of trainer Elizabeth Brown the gelding relished the ground and although V Neck ran well on his return to racing for Christopher Barber Nick Phillips was in command from the second last.