The Fernie Point-to-Point took place at Dingley on Saturday, 1st May, with the day’s big race, the Fernie Four Miler Mixed Open, causing considerable drama.
Teeton Bollinger, the previous winner of the race, came home in front from previous Foxhunter victor Amicelli, who was leading over the last fence. Having rallied under new Rider Nick Pearce, replacing the recently retired Stuart Morris, Teeton Bollinger passed the post a head in front of his rival, partnered by Jake Greenall.
There was some confusion after the race, however, with some bookmakers and racegoers being under the impression that the result was official after ‘weighed in’ had been announced, but shortly afterwards it became clear that a Stewards Enquiry had been called, which ultimately resulted in Amicelli being awarded the race on the basis of interference on the home bend. The favourite, Proud Andees, was brought down on the second circuit, giving Richard Burton a heavy fall shortly after a return from previous injury as he tried to revitalise his National Championship aspirations.
The day had started with a 17-runner field turning out for the PPORA Club Members race for Novice Riders; the Joe Turner-trained Parkinson, partnered by his grandson Ed, beat Star Double and Tom Jonason by three lengths, with the favourite Potts of Magic unplaced.
The Confined went to the Jimmy Tarry-trained, Tom Ellis-ridden Point Proven, who won in handy style from the staying-on The King of Angels by eight lengths; the favourite, Mendo, gave Gemma Hutchinson a crashing fall having slipped on the flat.
The Confined Maiden went to Lady Chatelaine, trained, owned and ridden by Serena Tyler; sent off at 20/1 having previously failed to complete in four starts, the mare beat Anamcqueen by three-and-a-quarter lengths, in doing so giving Tyler her first career win; the favourite Caught Looking fell.
Unoitmakessense remains unbeaten in all completed starts having taken the Restricted; owned and trained by Pauline Harkin, the horse was ridden by Peter Mann to beat Miss Bobsleigh and Malt Max, who finished so close it was hard to separate them.
The closing Maiden was run in two divisions, the first going to Nick Pearce on Stuart Morris’s charge Alflora Dora, the 6/4 favourite; the same yard suffered a reverse in the second division, however, with Lady Athlacca being pulled up having been sent off favourite. That race went to the 9/2 shot Just Standeese, owned and trained by Stephen Allen and ridden by James Banks, from Hazzard A Guess in second.