Black Forest Club
RACEGOERS were treated to the perfect start to the new point-to-point season at Black Forest Lodge on Sunday where quality racing with big fields was the order of the day.
The venue has proved a happy hunting ground for trainer/rider Fred Hutsby who scored a double at this meeting last year and repeated the dose this time with Rash Move in the restricted and Lord Trix in the mixed open.
Sixteen went to post in the open which had attracted some interesting new recruits from National Hunt including Fool On the Hill, Cowboyboots and Frederic Forever, but it was Lord Trix who was backed into favouritism and he rewarded his followers with a half length win.
Three were in contention approaching the turn for home but at the last Lord Trix held the advantage and Cowboyboots just failed to reel him in with second favourite Fool On the Hill finishing down the field.
Hutsby was denied a treble in the following intermediate when Oscar Royal looked the winner until Greet You Well rallied well on the run in under Mark Wall to stride away and score a five length victory. The win was a thrill for his owner/trainer Janet Holloway who has nursed the gelding back to health after a leg injury. She explained: “We gave him a year off and then we’ve been pottering away since April doing it all very slowly. He’s the kindest horse you could own and is wonderful in every way.”
It was Mrs Holloway’s first visit to the course from her Herefordshire home where she trains using former champion trainer David Nicholson’s old gallops.
Another name familiar in racing is that of former commentator John Hamner who was in the winners’ enclosure to greet Candarli after he provided Chloe Boxall with her first ever win in the novice riders’ race. Hamner, who was famed for calling the Grand National for the BBC, said: “We bought the horse privately from David Gandlofo where Chloe works. She’s a terrific rider and has ridden a few for him as well.”
Former champion Rachel Green opened her account for the season on Jackie McCullough’s Sulawacee in the first and fastest division of the open maiden. The winner is trained by Monique Pike who said the seven-year-old had come into his own this year and enjoyed the ground.
The second division went to Rhys Hughes on Jobsworth who pulled it out of the bag when it mattered to win by seven lengths from Jacobin. “I thought we were going to get beaten but he didn’t jack it in,” said trainer Robert Scrine who has a yard of 12 in Wales.
Carey Buckler had taken the first race on the card when We Got Him, trained by her father Bob, won the first division of the maiden over two and a half miles and the second division went to the Gordon Edwards owned and trained Knightsbridge Hill who was ridden to victory by his son Darren. “We bought him at Doncaster in May and as soon as we started schooling him over fences he was a different horse. I thought he would win today if he took to the fences.”
The next point-to-point in the Devon and Cornwall Area is the North Cornwall Club at Wadebridge on Saturday, December 15.