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South Durham at Sedgefield Racecourse
Sunday 28th May 2017
by Caroline Smith & Will Milburn

This weekend saw the final meeting in Yorkshire take place the South Durham's new course at Sedgefield racecourse, conditions were on the fast side of good but the track was in great nick, however like some meetings that become newly established there was a slightly disappointing turn out and hopefully supporters will turn in much bigger numbers next time. As the final meeting several championships were fought out, including the champion owner and champion Gentleman Novice in Yorkshire.

Jack Andrews was in top form on the day where he rode his first double, the first of which came in the Latimer Hinks sponsored Men's Open aboard his own Seeyouincourt. The pair made the running until been headed three out by odds on favourite Six A Side and Will Milburn, however the pair rallied to the lead on the run towards two out and steadily pulled clear to win comfortably, Six A Side again ran a gallant race and has had a very consistent season, whilst dual winner Carlos Gardel was back in third. Seeyouincourt was bought for Jack privately from Ireland when Jack began his pointing career so it is only fitting that on the final day of the Yorkshire season he secured Jack's leading Novice title.

Jack also took the Confined race aboard the Cherry Coward trained The Mobile Man, who was confirming his progression through out the season by beating the Lottie Crane ridden Qoubilai by six lengths in the Nortonthorpe Industrial Park Ltd Confined Hunts race. The pair settled in behind and with steady progress led on the down hill run and assert on the run towards the line, owned by Simon Gospel this was the second victory this season for the son of Milan "my other horse Billing loves firm ground, so we thought we'd get something we could run on easier ground" said his owner, whilst laughing his trainer remarked "we bought him off Facebook!". Third place was Orissan Jim whilst the reluctant Fureys Bar was fourth under Jack Jordan who has had a fantastic season and gave it his all in an attempt to close the gap on Jack Andrews in the Novice Championship.

Another on a title hunt was Lottie Crane, however it would not only be the Novice title that she took, but the leading Lady Rider in Yorkshire too and despite some good efforts through the day she got off mark for the afternoon aboard her own Fayre Enough in the Par Petroleum Open Maiden race. Settled in behind his only other rival Danny The Dancer and Ross Wilson, the pair took the lead with a circuit to go and cruised clear to win by the length of the run in. Placed numerous times through out the season the chestnut son of Whitmore's Conn previously raced down South for connections, however Lottie has moved North where she stables her horses with John Dawson who also trained the winner and she has made a great impact on the Yorkshire scene.

The Subaru Restricted race saw a bit of a surprise as 13-2 shot Milan Day scored handsomely by twelve lengths. Piloted by Jack Teal the pair took the lead three out and steadily pulled clear of the field and win nicely and put a below par effort behind him where he pulled up at Easingwold, second place went to Monarch's Glory for trainer Andrew Nicholls who plugged on and was maybe fate as the second horse was offered at Doncaster Sales the Wednesday previously, however was led out un-sold at £6,000 and the points accumulated there secured the leading owner award for Andy Nicholls. Third place went to Indalo Return who was recording his best effort this year. Jack Teal was making a fleeting visit back to Yorkshire to attend friend Pete Faheys wedding and stepped in to pick up a spare "I'm in Ireland for the summer working for Paul Beecher who produces show jumpers... it's been great so far" said Teal.

The Hewitts Solicitors Ladies Open saw an impressive display by Oh Toodles and Immy Robinson who had travelled up from the Albrighton and Woodland to take on a four strong field. The pairs job was made easier when Argot ran out and Oaklands Bobby lost his pilot three out when making a very bad blunder, which left the winner to easily come clear of his only other rival Blackthirteen under Jess Gillam. The winner was making it a treble for stallion Milan who also sired the winner of the Confined and the Restricted.

The first two races saw a disappointing turn out in the Collins Seafood Ltd 2m 4f Open Maiden race, which saw Jimmy High walk over for trainer Andrew Nicholls, and Indalo Return had no other contenders in the George F White Hunt Members race who also later went on to finish third in the Restricted. Another contributor to Andy Nicholls title hunt Jimmy High was only recently purchased out of Ireland "we've not had him that long, he seems a nice type but we're none the wiser really to what he's capable of...he may have to go for a bumper now depends what the boss wants to do" said Will Milburn who only had to trot his mount across the line.

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