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REVIEW
LEDBURY
MAISEMORE PARK
SUNDAY 30 MARCH 2003

by Peter Mansell

21-year-old Alexandria Bevan from Ledbury and 16-year-old Worcester Schoolboy Tom Weston both rode their first winners during Sunday afternoon's 12-race marathon at the Ledbury Point to Point at Maisemore Park.

It could be argued that fortune favoured Ard Na Carrig in the Members as several of his more fancied rivals suffered misfortunes but Miss Bevan was in the right place at the right time and brought her mount with a perfectly timed run to catch Miss Pilkington at the penultimate and having sufficient reserves to hold the challenge of Rusty Fellow and Ole Gunnar on the flat.

Weston had his first race ride on Caught at Dawn at Garnons two weeks ago and the partnership has obviously benefited from that experience because they made hacks of the rivals in the Intermediate.

The favourite Oh So Droll never jumped with any fluency and the writing was on the wall as Caught at Dawn stormed into the lead at the end of the back straight before sprinting away from his rivals approaching the last to land this victory for the riders father, Hindlip farmer Martin Weston.

Two trainers based in the Malvern area enjoyed successful afternoons with Eastnor's Nicky Sheppard landing a first and tenth race double with Ard Na Carrig and Aztec Rule while Roy Shail from Hollybush took Division I of the 5, 6 & 7 year old Maiden with Raymond James.

Aztec Rules had failed the start the previous week but no such problems were encountered on this occasion. Under Adrian Wintle's guidance they made virtually all the running and had sufficient reserves to hold Certain Surprises challenge during the closing stages of the 8-year-old and upwards Maiden. This winner carries the colours of the Bean Club syndicate, which is headed by Sheppard's sister Sue Bird.

The Shail family have been lucky to bred three winners from their race mare Sallisses and Raymond James made it four after his success in Division I of the 5, 6 & 7 year old Maiden. David Mansell produced the winner between the final two fences and they stayed on well to hold Rideware George's determined challenge on the flat.

Liz Grainger had cause for celebration after Silent Action (the only horse she has in her stable at Upton Snodsbury) had held on a hard fought victory in Division II of the 8year old Maiden. The 11-year-old had proved disappointing under Rules for his previous trainer Ian Williams but found this company more to his liking. It was virtually impossible to separate Silent Action and Mandate as they flashed past the judge but the former finally got the verdict by a short head.

Castlemorton's Tim Stephenson teamed up with Worcestershire trainer Alan Hollingsworth to land the final race of the day with My Lost Love. Hollingsworth has tried to sell the 8-year-old on a number of occasions but unfortunately there have been no takers and some of those people may have cause for regret judging by his performance in this race.

Northern Deal and Adrian Wintle were impressive winners of Division I of a high class Mixed Open. The Dick Baimbridge trained 8-year-old had seen off moderate rivals in his two previous outings this year but Fontaine Again and Glacial Trial were to provide a much stiffer test of his ability.

The Cheltenham based jockey sent his mount to the front from flag fall but looked vulnerable when Fontaine Again and Glacial Trial started to close up on the run to the 15th. Fearing he would be swallowed up by his market rivals, Wintle decided to go for broke turning into the home straight. It was a decisive move as Glacial Trial challenge ended at the penultimate while Fontaine Again was never able to match the winner's speed over the final two fences.

Division II of the Mixed Open produced a vintage ride by Julian Pritchard. Teme Willow has always had a tendency to jump right at his fences and he did so on this occasion but still held a decisive advantage at the end of the back straight. He was still clear at the penultimate but Teme Willow once again displayed his wayward technique at the last and while Pritchard's mount met it on a perfect stride which allowed Goawayoutofthat to gain a clear advantage that was maintained all the way to the line. This was a fine training performance by Jelly Nolan because the 9-year-old had been off the course since his last outing in May 2001.

Border Farmer and Rain Delay were impressive winners of their respective divisions of the Restricted. The former sprinted clear of his rivals in Division I to land the spoils for winning owner/trainer/rider James Richardson. The 24-year-old has recently returned to his Andoversford home after a spell as assistant trainer to Jonathen Pease in France. Rain Delay toyed with his rivals in Division II under his Bromyard based trainer/rider Ray Rogers who looks after the 8-year-old for his uncle Ken.

Richard Burton took two divisions of the younger Maidens on Airoski and Lockington. Airoski, a 13,500 gns Doncaster Sales purchase is trained by Caroline Robinson for her father Jeremy while Lockington is in the Bromsash stable of Marilyn Scudamore who acquired the Andrew Davis owned 7-year-old who had a hitherto undistinguished career under Rules with Ian Williams.

The Ledbury Clerk of the Course deserves great credit for producing the course is such good condition and on a weekend where other meetings could only attract a handful of runners, 144 horses contesting 12 races bears testament to the state of the course.

Considerable improvements, including a new post and rails paddock, extra running rails  and the removal of some of the undergrowth were all welcomed by spectators and the attendance of a portable grandstand overlooking the course was another new innovation.

Congratulations to all concerned.

RESULTS

MEMBERS
1ST        ARD NA CARRIG MISS A BEVAN                       20-1
2ND        RUSTY FELLOW MRS M FINCH                           8-1
3RD        OLE GUNNAR     M WILESMITH                           6-1
6 RAN               3 - 3 LENGTHS

5-6-7 YEAR OLD MAIDEN - DIVISION I
1ST        AIROSKI             R BURTON                               EVENS FAV
2ND        MILDAN GRACE G HANMER                               8-1
3RD        SING HIGH         A MARTIN                                 6-1
15 RAN              5 - 2 LENGTHS

5-6-7 YEAR OLD MAIDEN - DIVISION II
1ST            RAYMOND JAMES     D MANSELL                 8-1
2ND            RIDWARE GEORGE   W HILL                       14-1
3RD        LORD TIDDLYPUSH        J PRITCHARD              4-1
11 RAN              1/2 - 1/2 LENGTH 

5-6-7 YEAR OLD MAIDEN - DIVISION III
1ST            LOCKINGTON      R BURTON                               EVENS FAV
2ND        LORD CASTLE        M BALDOCK                             8-1
3RD        THE UNAMED MAN R COOPER                               4-1
13 RAN              4 - 2 LENGTHS 

RESTRICTED - DIVISION I
1ST        BORDER FARMER    J RICHARDSON                             6-1
2ND        SPRING CABBAGE   T STEPHENSON                            4-1
3RD            HILLSPRITE          R ROGERS                                   20-1
11 RAN              6 - 6 LENGTHS

RESTRICTED - DIVISION II
1ST        RAIN DELAY                           R ROGERS                        3-1
2ND            GLITTER PADDY                 N OLIVER                          8-1
3RD            CAMPDEN KITTY                F HUTSBY                         EVENS FAV
10 RAN              DISTANCE - NECK 

MIXED OPEN - DIVISION I
1ST            NORTHERN DEAL              A WINTLE                         5-4 FAV
2ND            FONTAINE AGAIN              T STEPHENSON               3-1
3RD        GLACIAL TRIAL                      G HANMER                      3-1
12 RAN              2 - 6 LENGTHS 

MIXED OPEN - DIVISION II
1ST             GOAWAYOUTOFTHAT       J PRITCHARD                    6-1
2ND        TEME WILLOW                       T STEPHENSON               6-4 FAV
3RD            MASTER PILGRIM               G DISNEY                         8-1
15 RAN              1 - 1/2 LENGTH 

INTERMEDIATE
1ST        CAUGHT AT DAWN             T WESTON                     5-1
2ND        OH SO DROLL                    R BURTON                    8-11 FAV
3RD        DINSEY FINEGAN               N PHILLIPS                   10-1
11 RAN              6 - 1/2 LENGTH 

8-YEAR-OLD AND UPWARDS MAIDEN - DIVISION I
1ST        AZTEC RULE                       A WINTLE                         3-1
2ND            CERTAIN SURPRISE       MISS E JAMES                 5-1
3RD            NORTHSPRITE                C WADLAND                     5-1
13 RAN              1 - 2 LENGTHS 

8-YEAR-OLD AND UPWARDS MAIDEN - DIVISION II
1ST        SILENT ACTION                 M HARRIS                         5-4 FAV
2ND            MANDATE                     G MAUNDRELL                 5-1
3RD            ROCKWELDA                A WINTLE                         5-1
14RAN               SHORT HEAD - 1 LENGTH 

8-YEAR-OLD AND UPWARDS MAIDEN - DIVISION III
1ST        MY LOST LOVE                T STEPHENSON                 5-1
2ND        MISS BIDDY                     A HARRIS                         16-1
3RD        STAR DESIGN                  MARK WALL                     10-1
14 RAN              6 - 3 LENGTHS

WEST MIDLAND AREA CHAMPIONSHIPS 
SPONSORED BY NEWSQUEST - HUMBERTS - EQUIMIX
 
LEADERS AFTER THREE MEETINGS

MALE RIDERS                                              LADY RIDERS
ADRIAN WINTLE                 40                       POLLY GUNDRY             17
JULIAN PRITCHARD            30                       JANE WILLIAMS              7
MICHAEL HARRIS                10                       ALEX BEVAN                   7

LEADING MARE                                           CHAMPION NOVICE
CAMPDEN KITTY           10                             MR NABORRO             7
MILDAN GRACE               5                            RAYMOND JAMES        7
ROCKWELDA                   3                           QUATERMASS             5
                                     
                              MILDAN GRACE           5

LEADING HORSE                                         NOVICE RIDER
FONTAINE AGAIN         12                            JANE WILLIAMS             7
CAMPDEN KITTY           10                            ALEX BEVAN                 7
AZTEC RULE                 10                            TOM WESTON               

OWNER/TRAINER/RIDER                         GROOM OF THE YEAR
JANE WILLIAMS              7                            LEADING CONTENDERS THUS
JAMES RICHARDSON      7                            SHARON SMITH & MANDY
TOM WESTON                7                            TATLOW   

 

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