The Official Point-to-Point Website for the Wessex Area
Blackmore & Sparkford Vale @ Charlton Horethorne
Date: 03/03/2024
Pony Racing: Yes
Course: Charlton Horethorne
First Race: 1.00
Extra Info

Secretary:   Mrs Caroline Hinks

Contact Details Tel: 01963 370260   Mob:  07977 547042


Entries Secretary:   As above

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

Entries close:   Monday 26th February 2024 12.30pm

Races:   Members, 4 & 5yrs Maiden (2m4f), Restricted, Mixed Open, Conditions Race (Level 2), Maiden (NWFAA)

First Race:   1.00 pm

A big screen near to the paddock shows all the action.

Pony Racing to take place before the first point to point race

ENTRY FEES  £50 per entry per race - NB. Online entry fees £50  2nd entry same horse £30 


The Wessex point to point season moves on to Charlton Horethorne who hosts the annual running of the Blackmore and Sparkford Vale point to point this coming Sunday. Situated on the border between Somerset and Dorset, the course has taken a fair amount of rain in recent days but with the strong wind blowing the going has improved to soft. Prior to the start of racing at 1.00pm there will be two pony races starting at 12 noon. There will be a big screen to watch the racing near the paddock and the bookmakers and there will be plenty of trade stands including hot and cold food and a licensed bar. The feature race, The Mixed Open, will be run in memory of Paul Barber a long-term supporter of both Pointing and National Hunt racing as well as having been the point-to-point Chairman from 1996-2012. The trophy to be presented in his memory by his sons Chris and Giles will be one he won at Wetherby when See More Business won the Charlie Hall Chase.

The opening race, the Tattersalls Cheltenham sponsored 4- and 5-year-old Maiden over 2 and a half miles, usually throws up a good winner and this year’s renewal looks no exception. Of those who have raced Mount Mason was third at Garthorpe whereas Rip Wheeler occupied the same place at MIlborne St Andrew for trainer Eamonn O’ Donnabhain and He’s Bresilian who fell on his debut for trainer Fran Nimmo who has a good record in this race. Chris Barber has entered two four-year-olds namely Heart of Courage and Valentin de Maine who is a half brother to Happy Day Emery and his representative should be on the short list. Harry Ryall has entered Little Lennox who is a half brother to Country Legend who won at the meeting last year. Rip Wheeler may use his existing racecourse experience to triumph.

The Members race will be run in memory of Keagan Kirkby and is sponsored by Paul Nicholls Racing. The entries are all high-quality horses and it is likely that Paul Nicholls will be making every effort to win the race. He can choose from Mr Glass, a very impressive winner at Chipley, Viroflay who was a close third in the Coronation Gold Cup and the veteran Shantou Flyer who slipped up in this race last year. Will Biddick has entered his recent Taunton Hunter Chase winner Macklin and the progressive Regatta de Blanc and if the latter runs she may prove the main danger to the Nicholls selection.

The Maiden race over three miles sponsored by Manor Farm Partnership has attracted the biggest entry of sixteen horses and this looks an open race. Navegaon Gate was a well beaten third behind two four-year-olds at Badbury Rings giving weight away but on equal terms with his rivals Heidi Stevens charge must have every chance. Another who ran at Badbury was Can You See Her and she should come on for her seasonal debut. Tim Vaughan has entered the consistent Designer Destiny already placed three times this season and Ringsend John who was fourth in an Irish Hurdle on his last race. Crawter was third at Larkhill and again should be better for the outing. Keepitfrombecky was a promising second at Chipley but was pulled up at Badbury. Luke Price’s horses should always be considered and Lavorante brings place form from last season and has each way prospects.

The Paul Barber Mixed Open race contains entries for Mr Glass, Shantou Flyer and Viroflay and whichever is chosen to run in this race must be fancied to triumph. If Regatta de Blanc opposes the Paul Nicholls representative it should be a fascinating battle and the mare is chosen to maintain her unbeaten record. The veteran The Kings Writ could not cope with Dr Rhythm but again has place prospects as does Singapore Saga who did not show her best when running behind Macklin in the Hunter Chase at Taunton.

The Alec Jarrett Limited sponsored Conditions race contains another Paul Nicholls representative in the form of Duc de Bourbon who won at Milborne and will be fancied to follow up unless Mr Glass is chosen to run in this race. Hearts Corner is progressive but may opt for the following Restricted race whereas Minella Jab was well beaten at Badbury, having previously won at Wadebridge. 

The meeting concludes with the Church House Investments sponsored Restricted race with the Chipley winner Summer Jam stepping up into Restricted class and he looks one to follow. He is up against a number of more experienced campaigners including Great Colewood who was a good third at Badbury, Hearts Corner who was a close second at Chipley, Lucky Lara was runner up at the same course in her Hunt race and State of Fame an easy winner at Great Trethew for Ed Vaughan. Whitsand Bay has been placed twice this season and has changed hands since his last outing and is now with Josh Newman. Hearts Corner is the selection for this race. 

Tickets for the meeting are available as early bird £12.50 per person up to 29th February and from the 1st March and on the gate £15.00 on Pointing Wessex website with under 16 years of age free. Postcode for the course DT9 4LJ



Race 1:            Maiden 4/5 yrs old 2m 4f 

1st         Rip Wheeler

1st         Mount Mason

3rd        Special John 

Runners:          5                      Distances:        DH, 10l                        Time: 5m 49s


Race 2:            Hunt 

1st         Shantou Flyer



Runners:          1                      Distances:        l, l                                Time: m s


Race 3:            Maiden (NWFAA) 

1st         Comonilean

2nd        Prophesea

3rd        Keepitfrombecky 

Runners:          10                    Distances:        1/2l, 7l                         Time: 6m 33s


Race 4:            Mixed Open 

1st         Shantou Flyer

2nd        Singapore Sage


Runners:          3                      Distances:        3l, l                              Time:6m 28s


Race 5:            Conditions (level 2)

 1st        Mr Glass

2nd        Pileon

3rd        Arv Way There 

Runners:          6                      Distances:        2l, 9l                            Time: 6m 25s


Race 6:            Restricted 

1st         Whitsand Bay

2nd        Thatshalfthebattle

3rd        Lucky Lara 

Runners:          7                      Distances:        3/4l, 3/4l                     Time: 6m 27s


Pony Results



The weather gods did their level best to disrupt the annual running of the Blackmore and Sparkford Vale point to point by first of all raining for much of the lead up to the meeting and then on Saturday morning producing enough snow to need for a further inspection to be held before the meeting could go ahead. However, the weather relented and on the day of the meeting it was a pleasant early spring day and a large crowd enjoyed the races where Will Biddick secured a hat trick of winning rides, Josh Newman had a training double and Olive Nicholls had a winning return to race riding after suffering an injury at Larkhill in January.

Will and Josh shared the riding spoils in the Tattersalls Jockey Club sponsored 4- and 5-year-old Maiden race when the judge could not separate Rip Wheeler and Mount Mason after a battle between them over the final two fences and declared a dead heat. Both had shown promise on their debuts and were fancied to win the race. Rip Wheeler, a four year old gelding by Walk In The Park , was bought at the Goffs Land Rover Sales for 62K Euros. Trained by Eamonn O’Donnabhain at a separate yard close to Tom Lacey’s National Hunt stables alongside four other horses he is likely to next be seen at a forthcoming sale.

A similar future awaits Mount Mason, a five-year-old son of Sandmason bought as a three-year-old in May 2022 at the Tattersalls Store Sale for 12K Euros for Shannon Lodge Racing. Kayley Woollacott on behalf of Josh explained that’ he was too weak to run last season’ and ‘has benefited from another year to strengthen up’ He ran well on his debut at Garthorpe and connections had been hopeful of a good run.

Will secured his second winner of the day aboard his father-in-law Rupert Nuttall’s Comonilean in the Manor Farm Partnership sponsored Open Maiden race. Always prominent he held off the strong challenge of Prophesea ridden by Callum Pritchard after the last fence and won by a head. Trained and bred by Rupert on his farm out of the mare Annie Fleetwood who won three chases and a Hurdle this was a popular winner for all of the local connections. A full sister to Lassue who Rupert sold last year, it is unlikely that this mare will follow the same route as she is the last of the family line. Explaining her name Rupert advised that ‘her stable name is Eileen and I spent some time coming up with a name that incorporated her stable name’ There is no truth that Rupert is a fan of Dexy’s Midnight Runners!

Olive had her first ride back when walking over on Shantou Flyer in the Keagan Kirkby Memorial Members race but was able to secure another winner on the same horse when making all in the Paul Barber Mixed Open race later in the afternoon. Jumping well for Olive the veteran was too good for the mare Singapore Saga and his next outing is likely to be in the Cheltenham Foxhunters where Olive finished third last season. Proud father Paul Nicholls expressed his delight at picking up both the Trophy in memory of John Farthing in the Members Race and the Paul Barber Memorial Trophy which had originally been presented to Paul after the success of See More Business in the Charlie Hall Chase in 2000.

Will secured the final leg of his treble aboard the classy Mr Glass in the Alec Jarrett Conditions Race. Previously owned by John Dance he had suffered a leg injury on his last run under Rules when trained by Paul Nicholls and needed a lengthy break from racing. Bought by Paul for Olive to ride this season he had previously won a Mixed Open at Chipley for Will and although he only beat Pileon ridden by Natalie Parker by a length and a half he did not look in danger of defeat. Boasting a third behind Constitution Hill in the 2022 Tolworth Hurdle he took some time to adapt to the move away from Ditcheat to the different training regime at Will’s yard but has now settled into the new routine. Ridden at home in draw reins he may be aimed next at either a Ladies Open or a Hunter Chase for Olive and he looks an exciting prospect for her for the rest of the season.

Josh trained the winner of the final race The Church House Investments sponsored Restricted race when Whitsand Bay ridden by Darren Andrews held off the challenge of Thatshalfthebattle. Previously owned and trained by Chris Wald who had bought the gelding as an unbroken four old but finding his role as Assistant Trainer to Joe Tizzard to be too time consuming to give the eight-year-old a proper training routine he indicated that he was for sale. Acquired by Josh and Kayley Woollacott in February for long term supporters John and Sonia Gardener, this was the first time his new owners had seen their purchase and they were delighted with his success. Kayley added that ‘he had finished behind Hearts Corner at Chipley and as we rate that gelding highly, we thought that Whitsand Bay would be a good purchase’