The Official Point-to-Point Website for the Wessex Area
South & West Wilts
Date: 26/02/2023
Pony Racing: No
Course: Larkhill Racecourse
First Race: 12.00
Extra Info

Secretary:   Mrs Dinah Webb-Bowen

Address:   Sycamore Farm, Stoke Trister, Wincanton, Somerset BA9 9PE

Contact Details  Mob: 07977 069273


Entries Secretary:  James Symonds

Address:  Willowbrook House, 41 Corton, Warmnster, Wiltshire, BA12 0SZ

Contact Details Tel:  01985 850883   Mob:  07990 707139


Entries to:   The Secretary or The Point to Point Racing Co Ltd

Entries close:   Monday 20th February 2023 12.30pm

Races:   Maiden Conditions (2m4f), Open Maiden, Mixed Open, Restricted, Conditions (Level 2) +, Conditions Ladies,(Level 3) (2m4f), 4,5 & 6 years Flat

First Race:   12.00pm


Larkhill hosts its penultimate meeting next Sunday when the South and West Wilts hold their meeting. There will be the usual attractions of trade stands to browse, food and drink outlets, the mandatory bouncy castle and the bookmakers with whom to have a bet . There are seven scheduled races starting at 12 noon with a total of 71 entries  and in addition there will be two charity flat races , the first at about 11.30am and the second after the last race. One of these will be for thorough breds and the other for non-thorough breds and all of the riders will have raised funds in favour of Racing Welfare so it is hoped that these will be well supported by racegoers. The current going is good with moisture in the ground and all bends have been moved onto fresh level ground since the last meeting. Three of the fences have also been moved since the Combined Services meeting. 

The feature race of the day is the Mixed Open race where the game mare Miss Seagreen may be able to defeat her rivals. Placed third on her only outing this season so far at the end of November she won an Open race last season and was then placed in the Lady Dudley Cup. Her principal rivals include Wagner who won a Mixed Open at Higham recently and a Hunter Chase at Wincanton last season, Captain Bucks who unseated Molly Landau at the sixth fence at Badbury last weekend but is usually the model of consistency, the evergreen Wotzizname who was fifth in a Taunton Hunter Chase last month and Grageelagh Girl who finished runner up in her last race at Larkhill when Miss Seagreen was third. Beau du Brizais is another possible ride for Molly Landau, and he would certainly come into calculations if he were her chosen ride. 

The meeting opens with a Conditions Race and Commanche Red looks to have a good chance to supplement his previous course victory earlier this season. However he would have to carry a 9 pounds penalty and this may prove to be too much. Of his potential rivals James Henderson has entered both Epi Sacre and Frisson Collonges and both should be better for their seasonal debuts and his selection should be noted. Ecco formerly trained by Paul Nicholls is now with Alex Dunn and although beaten a long way on his seasonal debut at Cocklebarrow the form was franked by the easy success of Raven’s Tower at Badbury last Sunday. It’s for Alan stayed on to be third at the last meeting and a repeat of that form would give him a chance. 

The 3 mile Open Maiden has attracted an entry of 16 horses where Chris Barber appears to have a strong hand with both Ping Pong Paddy and Whats Cooking entered. The former finished runner up to Great Colewood at the last meeting and a repeat of that run may be good enough. His stablemate was fourth at Milborne St Andrew in a decent race and if he is chosen to represent the yard the hint should be taken. Tom Weston has entered two four year olds namely Mahler Man and Sheer Scene and with the allowances his representative should be carefully considered. Hold Me Tight will probably improve for his seasonal debut at the last meeting but he often finds one or two better than him. Dorset Diamond was third on his last outing at Larkhill and a repeat of that run would give him each way chances. 

Chris has entered the same two horses in the Maiden Conditions Race over the shorter trip of two miles four furlongs and his selection would be fancied. In addition he has also entered Joe Cotton who last ran in Ireland at the end of January but has now been switched to England. Highway Hero had no answer to the decisive victory of The Ballybreen Fox at Milborne St Andrew but certainly deserves to find a race like this. Gig in The Park established a huge lead in his race at Milborne but weakened near the finish so this shorter trip might play to his strength. Drenagh has been placed several times under rules and this Fran Poste trained gelding might be the one to surprise his rivals. 

The Restricted race may provide compensation for Happy Day Emery who was still just in front when unseating his jockey at the last at the Combined Services meeting. Trained locally by Bea Coward he may be too good for his rivals who are headed by Between You and Me who was runner up in a similar race at Milborne St Andrew and Monmouth Hill runner up in both of his outings so far this season. The intriguing entry is Vermilion Cliffs the winner as a three year old at Dundalk for Aidan O’Brien but unplaced on many occasions when trained by Denis Hogan over Hurdles. Now with Luke Price his debut over fences should be watched with interest particularly as he is likely to be partnered by champion jockey James King. 

The Ladies Conditions race over the shorter trip of 2 miles and four furlongs may give the consistent Champion Chase another victory. Already placed twice this season he is likely to be partnered by Alice Stevens who rode him on his seasonal debut at Horseheath when he finished third. Chase Me ought to come for his seasonal debut in the Coronation Gold Cup and this is a much easier race. His trainer James Ridley has also entered Right of Reply but he might need the race not having run for more than a year. Tim Underwood’s horses are always worthy of respect and despite some poor form figures his Butte Montana might surprise over this reduced distance. 

The meeting concludes with the Etheridge Stud and Farm sponsored Flat Race over two miles. This stud based at Okeford Fitzpaine near Blandford stands the stallion Virtual whose reputation has been considerably enhanced by the success of Hewick who was last seen winning the American Grand National and holds an entry in the Cheltenham Gold Cup. There will be information about the stallion in the racecard for breeders to view. The race itself has attracted 16 horses of which only two have ever raced before. Particular note should be made of the Anthony Bromley owned Achtung Baby, the two Georgina Nicholls representatives namely Erratic Cinematic and King’s Consort and the Bradley Gibbs trained Purple Aki. Mythe Bridge ought to come on for his only outing and is the pick of the two to have raced to date.

Entry costs are £15 per person with under 16s free. Plenty of parking available. Postcode for the course is SP4 8QR and the course is signposted off the Amesbury to Upavon road A345. Check Wessex Point to Point website – for more information 


Race 1:            Conditions Level 2 

1st         Frissons Collenges

2nd        It’s for Alan

3rd        Oscar Montel 

Runners:          4                      Distances:        25l, 7l                          Time: 5m 52s


Race 2:            Maiden 

1st         Gouazec

2nd        Whats Cooking

3rd        College Field 

Runners:          6                      Distances:        nk, 9l                           Time: 6m 2s


Race 3:            Maiden Conditions (2m4f) 

1st         Joe Cotton

2nd        Highway Hero

3rd        Ker Melba 

Runners:          5                      Distances:        11/2l, 15l                     Time: 5m 4s


Race 4:            Mixed Open

1st         Grageelagh Girl

2nd        Epi Sacre

3rd        Miss Seagreen 

Runners:          7                      Distances:        3/4l, 11l                       Time: 5m 52s



Race 5:            Restricted 

1st         Happy Day Emery

2nd        Between You and Me

3rd        Lady Samson 

Runners:          3                      Distances:        6l, 18l                          Time: 6m 9s


Race 6:            Ladies Condition (2m4f) 

1st         Champion Chase

2nd        Butte Montana

3rd        Hybery 

Runners:          7                      Distances:        3l, 25l                          Time: 5m 00s


Race 7:            Flat 4,5,& 6 YO 

1st         Purple Aki

2nd        Crookbarrow

3rd        Arknell 

Runners:          12                    Distances:        6l, 5l                            Time: 3m 39s

Pony Results



Larkhill hosted its penultimate meeting of the season when the South and West Wilts held their meeting . Supported by a good crowd the weather remained dry with a keen wind and on going described by riders as good safe ground the highlights of the day were a first winner over fences for Fern O’Brien, a riding double for jockey Bradley Gibbs and a popular local success for trainer Bea Coward and the Barrow Street Racing Club.

Grageelagh Girl provided Fern, daughter of National Hunt trainer Fergal O’Brien and Jelly Nolan, 17, with her first ever winner over fences when the mare held off the sustained challenge of Epi Sacre ridden by Freddie Henderson in the feature Lycetts sponsored HRH The Prince of Wales Mixed Open. Previously placed at the first Larkhill meeting behind the recent Hunter Chase winner I K Brunel she loves her racing and is an ideal schoolmaster for Fern despite now having reached the age of twelve. Trained by Hannah Lewis for owner Chris Coley she appreciated the better racing surface and despite her small stature jumped well. She was going to be Fern’s first winner under Rules at Cartmel last June but was disqualified when the mare lost her weight cloth on the run-in. Since then Fern has recorded six victories on the flat and although she wants to continue riding on the flat she said ‘ I enjoy riding over fences and this gives me a real thrill’

Freddie Henderson had better luck in the opening Pat Awdry Memorial Conditions race when recording an easy success aboard  his father James ‘s Frisson Collonges. Sadly James was away in Kenya but word of his victory soon reached him. Explaining his success Freddie said that ‘ the gelding has been regularly hunted with the Old Berkshire and the VWH and loves his jumping’ . His leaps at the last three fences were excellent and he had a comfortable victory margin of twenty lengths at the winning post.

The first of Bradley’s double came courtesy of Gouazec in the Milton Indoor Storage Services sponsored Maiden race when he narrowly defeated Whats Cooking ridden by George Hiscock. Making his English debut ,having been placed in five Irish points, for owner/trainer Callum Griffiths he was acquired privately after his last run in Ireland in December. Callum, paying his first ever visit to Larkhill, is based in Haverfordwest, West Wales  and was recording his first training victory having previously been assistant to Alistair Ralph. He has five horses to run from his yard which he has leased from Dai Rees.

Another ex-Irish import Joe Cotton made his English debut a winning one when beating Highway Hero by a length in the Woolley and Wallis sponsored Maiden Conditions race. Despite veering to the left on the run in he stayed on well under a strong ride from Will Biddick for trainer Chris Barber and looks to have a bright future. Noted by Chris when finishing fourth in a Maiden in November to Southoftheborder he approached Colin Bowe to find out if he was for sale. Colin advised that he would have one more run and after that race in Ireland in January Chris acquired him. Chris advised that he is for sale and hopes that he would have a future under Rules. 

Happy Day Emery made amends of his last fence unseat at the last meeting when comfortably beating Between You and Me ridden by Josh Newman in the Martin Haskett Agricultural Contractors sponsored Restricted race. Ridden as usual by Martin ‘Fly ’McIntyre he was cheered home by the members of the Barrow Street Racing Club who had turned out in force to support the Bea Coward trained grey gelding. Sourced by bloodstock agent Mel Smith he was described by Sarah Shields as ‘a very laid back horse ‘ and ‘ just a gem’ and looks one to follow in the future. He did suffer a cut during the race and it is to be hoped that he will soon recover from this.

There were tears in the winner’s enclosure after the success of Champion Chase ridden by Alice Stevens for trainer Fran Poste in the Symonds and Sampson Ladies Conditions Race. These were of joy and were from the gelding’s groom Cerys Sheehy who joined the stable of Charlie and Fran’s yard last year on an apprenticeship and has been riding the gelding since she arrived. Bought by Fran at Ascot having failed to win any of his thirty two previous races this was his fourth point to point victory and the relationship he has built up with Cerys was very apparent.

Another Ascot purchase came from the successful debut of Purple Aki in the Virtual sponsored Flat race over two miles. A maximum field of twelve horses set off and at the winning post the Bradley Gibbs trained and ridden gelding had six lengths in hand from Crookbarrow ridden by Alice Stevens. Bought for £5K as an unbroken four-year-old Bradley paid credit to the work of his novice rider Josh Younge who rides him at home and had hoped to let him ride in this race which unfortunately for Josh was not permitted due to the conditions. 

Prior to racing a Charity Flat race was held organized by Simon Earle and it was announced that in excess of £7K had been raised for Racing Welfare.