Sunday 8th May 2011
by Brian Lee
During the afternoon, fifty-six runners faced the starter Nick Tamplin at the Tredegar Farmers at picturesque Lower Machen where the course had been well watered
throughout the week.
Riders described the going as good and one or two even said it was too soft for their horses!
Favourite backers got off to a good start when Michael McMahon's seven-year-old bay mare Princess De Rome, partnered by Nick Williams, came home eight lengths ahead
of One To Note (Marc Barber) in the Members' race.
The Restricted was a much closer affair with Roger Willcox's nine-year-old bay
gelding Ace High Blue scoring by a length from Backstreet Lad (Nathan Deakin)
after jumping the last just in front. The odds-on favourite Beyond Dreams, ridden by Richard Woolacott, after leading for
most of the trip, tired during the closing stages and was pulled up.
Ace High Blue's rider Josh Harris, 23, rides out for Vale of Glamorgan trainer Evan
Bradley Gibbs, who had celebrated his 17th birthday four days earlier,
won the confined on Cinaman, a seven-year-old bay gelding, trained by his father David
who bought the horse for him. Like the runner-up, Cinaman used to be trained by Tim Vaughan. Brinkmanship, now trained by Vaughan's wife Abbi, jumped the
last alongside Cinaman who went on to win by two lengths.
Tim Vaughan, who had just returned from Punchestown after seeing his Spirit Of
Adjisa land the Champion Novice Hurdle, joked: "I'm pleased for Bradley but
I would have been more pleased if Abbi's horse had won.'' Gibbs and David both work
for Tim Vaughan.
Hunt-racing stalwart Edna Hussey,92, was delighted when her Bob Bites Back won
the men's open finishing one-and-a-half lengths ahead of 50-1 outsider Cottage River
(Paul Tolman). The pair had jumped the last almost together but unfortunately,
Stoneriggs Merc, who was going for a three-timer, was brought down when Manor
Park fell at the second. Bob Bites Back could next run in what used to be known as the Horse & Hound Cup at Stratford.
Another horse which could be be Stratford bound is Baren De Doc who, under
Lucy Pearce Rowsell, won for the third time on the bounce in the ladies' open race. Jumping the last in front, the Charlotte Owen trained eight-year-old bay gelding,
won by four lengths from City Breeze (Jodie Hughes).
The two-and-a-half mile maiden race went to Mark Jackson's six-year-old bay gelding
SamTheMan who made every post a winning one and who had twelve lengths to spare
over Shwetzer (Nathan Deakin).This was Mark's only ride at the meeting and he
has been successful on the only other two times he has visited the course.
Mark said: "My late father Joe Jackson's ambition was to own, breed, train
and ride a winner and now I have fulfillled that ambition it for him.''
In the open maiden, the Charlotte Owen trained John Clayton, ridden by Mathew Barber,19, proved too speedy for Clongeen Allstar partnered by Mathew's older brother Marc,
aged twenty-seven. A former inmate of Rebecca Curtis's yard and bought locally from
Grant Lewis, John Clayton scored by two lengths.
Mollyann Rees,10, a member of the Glamorgan Hunt Pony Club,won the six furlongs
pony race on her 12-year-old mare Mon Mellissa and Jordan Williams,12, was successful in the nine furlongs pony race on his mother Beth's eleven-year-old bay mare