Vine & Craven
Sunday 13th February 2011
by Robin Gray
Sam Waley-Cohen, who rode Long Run to victory in the prestigious King George VI Chase at Kempton Park last month was seen to advantage at Barbury Castle on Sunday taking the two and a half mile Maiden race on the aptly named Winning Habit.
Sam, who silenced critics of his amateur status when beating champion jockey AP McCoy at Kempton, demonstrated professional judgement at Barbury easing his mount into contention with six fences to jump and riding a polished finish to beat Cavite Zeta and Pippin Fort comfortably.
Another promising amateur, 16 year old William Twiston-Davies, son of trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies, was faultless in making all the running on his father's Nauton Brook in the opening novice riders event.
More than 100 runners contested the seven races on an afternoon spoiled by constant rain. Although there were several 'unseated riders', fallers were few with jockeys nursing their horses to get home in the testing ground.