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REVIEW
COTSWOLD VALE FARMERS
ANDOVERSFORD
SATURDAY 10 APRIL 2004
by Peter Mansell

With so many meetings over the Easter Holiday period, it is almost inevitable that runners will be thin on the ground at some events and that is exactly what happened to Saturdays Cotswold Vale Farmers fixture at Andoversford with just 21 horses contesting six races.

Despite the lack of runners, two young riders will have fond memories of this meeting, which provided them with their first successes between the flags.

22-year-old James Jones from Staunton was the first to get on the score sheet by partnering Tirley Gale to victory in the Members. Jones was content to restrain his mount until halfway but took the lead down the back straight and had sufficient reserves to see off the determined challenge of Arctic Burner over the final two fences.

Donald Smith has been a staunch supporter of this meeting over the years and he has always enjoyed his fair share of success in this contest so it was fitting that Nicky Smith should train this winner for her father in law. Jones who works for a number of local trainers was finally getting his head in front after two years of trying.

16-year-old Shropshire schoolboy Charles Huxley had a much easier task on Galeshan in the Club Members. This partnership was left in splendid isolation after Simon Howe had parted company with Hubbly Bubbly at the fourth.

Galeshan had useful form under Rules for Lisa Hales, but now carries the colours of Rachel and Phil Huxley and provided the first leg of a double for Shifnal trainer Andrew Dalton who took the second match on the cards when Ashgan and Geoff Barfoot Saunt proved too strong for Felloo in the Mixed Open.

The latters rider Ed Walker had a frustrating afternoon with both his remaining mounts Ballyblack and Jolly Jake finishing second in their respective events.

Both horses are trained by Emma Baker at Naunton. She would not have been disappointed with Ballyblacks run in the Restricted because the 10-year-old was making his seasonal debut and Walkers mount was unable to respond when Waterloo Leader swept by between the final two fences. Owner/rider David Smith made a last minute decision to travel to this meeting in preference to their original choice at Dingley.

Ecstasy and agony would probably describe the emotions of Jolly Jake’s connections prior to and after the announcement of the result of the concluding Maiden.

The 10-year-old has finished runner up on seven occasions in this type of event, and will find no easier opportunity than this in the future but despite his brave efforts he just could not get his head in front when it mattered.

Three lengths clear at the penultimate, Walkers mount started to send out distress signals after jumping the last. They were joined and momentarily passed by Sales Dodger on the flat, but Jolly Jake’s managed to get his head in front again about 20 yards from the line only for victory to slip from his grasp in the dying strides.

 

RESULTS
MEMBERS
1ST TIRLEY GALE J JONES 11/10
2ND ARCTIC BURNER MRS J CHAPMAN 5-2
3RD MACY J MAHOT EVENS FAV
4 RAN
CONFINED
1ST PARAHANDY H DOWTY 4-9 FAV
2ND MOSTYN G BARFOOT SAUNT 9-4
3RD GAY BARATINEUR MRS K BAIMBRIDGE 2-1
5 RAN
CLUB MEMBERS
1ST GALESHAN C HUXLEY 1-3 FAV
(FINISHED ALONE)
2 RAN
MIXED OPEN
1ST ASHGAN G BARFOOT SAUNT 1-4 FAV
2ND FELLOO E WALKER 7-4
2 RAN
RESTRICTED
1ST WATERLOO LEADER D SMITH 4-6 FAV
2ND BALLYBLACK E WALKER 2-1
3RD FLOODGATE MISS V FLOOD 3-1
4 RAN
MAIDEN
1ST SALES DODGER R HUGHES 2-1
2ND JOLLY JAKE E WALKER 6-4
3RD JURIST M KEEN EVENS
4 RAN

 

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