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Dart Vale & Haldon Harriers at Buckfastleigh
Sunday 11th March 2007
by Lucy Johnson

JALONS Star landed the prestigious Westcountry Champion Chase at Buckfastleigh on Sunday after a superb performance on stamina sapping ground under his owner Ben Robarts.

Trained just a stone’s throw from the course by Nikki Frost, it was Jalons Star’s first start of the season and a last minute decision to run after originally intending to go to the abandoned meeting at Great Trethew and then a hunter chase at Stratford. Ben said: “We didn’t really want to come here, and we really thought he would need the run but we always knew he would like the sticky ground.” Ben’s mother Georgie Robarts added: “I really can’t believe he has won, and what a race to win. Ben really deserves that as he works very hard.” Favourite Southwestern made a mistake three out, and after a valiant effort on the run-in, failed to reel in the winner who went away to score by a decisive seven lengths. 

Lisa Buswell threw the works at Maser Accord in the first division of the open maiden to score her first win on her fourth attempt. Trained by Malcolm Beck, Lisa’s partner, near Ilfracombe, the seven-year-old was bought at Doncaster Sales three years ago and stayed well on the testing ground which saw just two of the 12 starters finish after Lee Rowe had set a fierce pace on Bonny Busona leaving the field trailing in his wake. Lisa was understandably over the moon with her first ever victory and said: “Malcolm promised he’ll take me to dinner anywhere I want if I win, and my pony gets new pyjamas!”

The pace in the following second division of the maiden was much more sedate with Dandooley relishing the going to finish with plenty of running under Will White a long way ahead of Tim Dennis on Hilton Hall. “I’ve always thought he’s very nice horse and I’ve always had a lot of faith in him,” said his trainer Julie Pocock who wasn’t surprised at the ease of the win. “I told Will to go out and be fairly handy on him,” she added. Gordon Chamber’s home-bred What A Moose finished a distance back in third on his first ever start but Will Biddick received a £150 ban for carrying on with an exhausted horse.

Biddick remained out of luck in the following Westcountry Champion Chase after falling with Cannon Bridge, but then things took a turn for the better when he rode a double.  First he steered home On His Toes to win the Exeter Racecourse Intermediate Race. Trained by Gordon Chambers, it was a fitting win for his owners, Exeter Racecourse, who now intend to run him in the final. “That was great and we are chuffed to bits,” said clerk of Exeter course Barry Johnson.

Biddick then scored with Mister Club Royal who took the confined race when the pair were left in front after Thirtytwored slipped up on the final bend when running well. Trainer Emma Oliver was understandably pleased with the performance of her horse who had had a week in the box followed by a few days of road work after getting pus in the foot. “He’s had a shoe fitted with a bar that goes over the bruise,” she explained.

Mike Wier added another win to his belt when Richard Darke pushed Real Sharp ahead at the last from Tamar Moss and went on to score by eight lengths in the first restricted.In the second restricted Lisheen Storm stayed on strongly on the run in in the second restricted but couldn’t quite get on terms with the winner Winter Scene, ridden by Lucy Gardner, and owned by Claire Nute and her grand parents who received a share in the horse as a 60th anniversary present.

In the members’ Siobhans Quinner and Gunners Mistake were neck and neck on the run-in with the latter getting up to score by three quarters of a length under Darren Edwards. Rebecca Welch’s home bred  ten-year-old is out of the same mare as third placed Riteway Round.

RESULTS

Members: Gunners Mistake  (Mr D Edwards) 1; Siobhans Quinner (Mr R Darke) 2; Riteway Round (Mr C Dailly) 3. 3/4l, 8l; 6.45.

The Winston Pincombe Open Maiden Div 1: Master Accord (Lisa Buswell) 1; Chasing The Storm (Mr T Dennis) 2. Two finished. 6.40.

The Marchand Petit Open Maiden Race Div 2: Dandooley (Mr W White) 1; Hilton Hall (Mr T Dennis) 2; What A Moose (Mr W Biddick) 3. Dist, dist; 6.48.

The Totnes and Bridgetown Mixed Open Race: Jalons Star (Mr Ben Robarts) 1; Southwestern (Mr Neil Harris) 2; Concert Pianist (Mr Richard Woollacott) 3. 7l, 15l; 6.21.

The Exeter Racecourse Intermediate: On His Toes (Mr W Biddick) 1; Mr Auchterlonie (Mr E Cookson) 2;  Walter De Wodeland (Miss S Young) 3. 15l, 1l; 6.32.

The Little Cotton Caravan Club Confined Hunts: Mister Club Royal (Mr W Biddick) 1; Shobrooke Mill (Mrs C Farrant) 2; Perfect Liaison (Mr B Robarts) 3. 10l, 3l; 6.36.

The Howard Financial Services Ltd Restricted Race Div 1: Real Sharp (Mr R Darke) 1; Tamar Moss (Miss E Noszkay) 2; Liric lady (Mr D Edwards) 3. 8l, 2l; 6.35.

The Barton’s Solicitors and Richard Anthony Hairdressers Restricted Race Div 2: Winter Scene (Miss L Gardner) 1; Lisheen Storm (Mr T Dennis) 2; Sweet Shooter (Mr R Hawker) 3. 1 ½ l, 1 ½ l 6.29.

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