SATURDAY 26 APRIL 2003
by Chris Simpson
The picturesque course at Balcormo Mains in Fife hosted this week’s Northern Circuit Point to Point meeting.
Those who attended the most northerly meeting of the year were rewarded with a splendid afternoons racing highlighted by a double for rider Pauline Robson on Active Venture and Riparius.
The meeting began with an easy success for Solsgirth ridden by Jamie Alexander in the Members race. The gelding came home a distance clear of Carlinare who was the only other runner to complete.
The Restricted provided an exciting finish with 4 horses still in with a chance going to the last. On the run in Active Venture ran on well for Pauline Robson’s strong driving to win by a length from Itineris with Roscoe Burn a further 3 lengths further back in 3rd.
The Ladies open only attracted 3 runners but they were Balisteros, Riparius and Running Mute who have dominated the Ladies Open races this season. Once again they provided a thrilling finish. Riparius was under pressure from some way out but kept responding and took up the running 2 out. He then stayed on really well to hold off the sustained challenge of his 2 opponents to beat Running Mute by a length with Balisteros only a short head further back in 3rd.
These two races saw Pauline Robson riding at her very best.
Tursal gave an excellent display of jumping from the front for jockey Ran Morgan in the Mens Open; some exuberant leaps from the 14-year-old helped him gain a 15-length victory over Howayman. Charlie Foxtrot, trained by Lucinda Russell, was another 18 lengths back in 3rd.
A gamble was landed in the confined hunt race. Hoh Tel ridden by Chris Gillon was backed down from 3/1 to 6/4 fav. In the race they had to work hard for a 1 ˝ length success over Exact after the two had vied for the lead over the final 3 fences.
The First Maiden threw up a bit of a surprise result with Royalecko winning by a distance from the 2 joint favorites Highland Island and Sambuka Black. In his previous 5 attempts in points Royalecko had failed to complete the course. On this occasion however he jumped really well and won going away much to the delight of his rider Jane Hollands.
The final race provided a well-deserved success for Starbuck who has been placed on a number of occasions this season. Patiently ridden by Luke Morgan he took up the running from Chase the Moon after jumping the 3rd last and then ran on well to win by 8 lengths.
Next weeks meeting is on Sunday 4th May at Mosshouses. First race 2.00 p.m.