Wessex success at Barbury International meeting
Although it was a blank weekend for the Wessex Point to Point area there were two notable victories for horses trained in our area and two other commendable placings at the Barbury International meeting at Barbury Castle last Saturday.
Definitelyanoscar was a very impressive winner of the Mares Maiden race and gave Christopher Barber his first training victory with his first ever runner. Bought by Christopher at Doncaster for £8,000 in May 2017 after two runs in Irish point-to-points the mare jumped superbly for part owner Martin ‘Fly’ McIntyre and had a commanding twelve lengths in hand at the winning post. Christopher described himself as having ‘never been so nervous before a race’ and was hardly able to speak after the race as he had been shouting her home throughout. Christopher and Fly both work for Harry Fry and Christopher paid credit to both Harry and Ciara Fry for their assistance as well as his grandfather Richard Barber who has helped him with his bloodstock skills. Christopher trains the mare and one other from a small yard close to Littlewindsor racecourse and both he and Fly do the work during their lunch hours.
Trained close by at Woolminstone Saddlers Encore beat a high quality field when winning the Mixed Open race for owner Janet Gibbs. The last time the horse was seen in public was when he finished third at Chepstow in October 2016 behind no less than Thistlecrack. Sadly he picked up an injury and spent several months of box rest with Polly Curling before joining Chloe Newman in February before then enjoying a summer at grass. The winner of three hurdle races he clearly retains his ability and if all is well after his race connections are considering a Hunter Chase in February. Ridden by Josh Newman for his aunt Josh was riding his fourth winner of the season having ridden two lots earlier in the day for his former boss Alan King.
Chloe’s other runner on the day was the home bred Enormouse in the second division of the Bumper Race who finished an encouraging third out of the sixteen runners. Owned by Michael Dare and a half- brother to winning pointers Genermouse and Minim Mouse he is one to follow as the season progresses.
Another newcomer, this time in the first division of the Bumper, who ran with much promise was the Hannah Clarke trained Schiap Hill who finished a close up second. Bred by owner Fiona Britten and broken by Hannah who trains at Milton Abbas as a two year old the gelding was only born in May 2014 so is still quite some way away from his fourth birthday. Fiona reported that both of his siblings who have previously raced both won first time out and this gelding has finished an excellent second.