SOUTHWESTERN put up a thoroughly impressive performance in the men’s open at the Silverton Point-to-Point at Black Forest Lodge to confirm he is on course to assert his challenge in the prestigious Christie Foxhunter at the Cheltenham Festival in March.
Before that, trainer Camilla Scott intends to run the nine-year-old, last year’s winner of the John Corbett for novice hunter chasers, in the Coronation Cup at Larkhill. The nine-year-old was a ready winner of the race, looking in a class of his own and holding a healthy advantage with a circuit to go to win easily under Neil Harris who later doubled up on So Long in division two of the maiden.
Home bred by the Scotts out of the former point-to-pointer Cherry Picker, this eight-year-old is the fifth generation to be handled by the family. “She did a leg 18 months ago and you never know how they will do, but saddling her up we knew she was well. We’ll find a nice restricted for her and keep her going,” said Mrs Scott.
Another home bred to delight connections was the good looking grey Margam Abbey who took the fourth maiden under Lucy Rowsell. The six-year-old had had an educational spin in a bumper at Aintree 15 months ago and his success was no surprise to owner/trainer David Brace who trained his dam Coolvawn Lady, a prolific winner of point-to-points. “He can jump and he can wing them alright. He’s a good old boy and he’s got great bone with good confirmation,” said the Bridgend-based trainer.
Rockwithacaveman and Tot of the Knar proved the well being of Ed Walker and Polly Gundry’s team taking a maiden each. The well bred Rockwithacaveman, previously in the ownership of ex-champion National Hunt owner David Johnson, was an easy winner of division three in the hands of Gundry, although Walker admitted after that he thought it would take a run or two for him to come right.
Tot of The Knar had Walker expressing his amazement that the mare had kept going for more than two miles. “She’s a bit of a madam, but a madam with an engine,” said Walker who admitted the six-year-old could be very difficult. “That is a massive shock and we are very pleasantly surprised,” he said.
Katherine Hobbs proved once again she has very real talent as an amateur rider when getting a superb jump out of Croix De Guerre at the last which sealed the race for the teenager who had approached the race upsides Chloe Roddick on Wages.
Once a good winner under Rules, he proved three miles is a synch when racing in the amateur ranks and trainer Marie McGuiness said the easier grade had refuelled his enthusiasm for the game. “He’s had a lot of hard races during and he has done so much racing he was a bit sick of it but this has given him another outlook.”
Steve Flook, who has proved time and again he is a trainer to follow in hunter chases, is lining up restricted winner Lanicene for the intermediate final at Exeter Racecourse in May. The nine-year-old stayed on strongly on the run-in to hold off Kiwi Rap and record a three length win. “We bought him at Ascot Sales in the summer and they said they were glad to get rid of him but since he’s been with us he’s been a Christian. This horse will take some beating on better ground,” said Flook.
The win also proved a first for Danny Cook, 24, whose been working for David Pipe for the past five months.
Knightsbridge Hill proved his liking for the course to take the intermediate under Darren Edwards while Lucy Gardner scored her third win of the season on Claire Nute’s Winter Scene in the members’ race.
The Tincknell Fuels & Simpsons Edwards Hunt race: Winter Scene (Miss L Gardner) 1; The Kew Tour (Mr W White) 2; Just Reuben (Mr T Chanin) 3. Trainer: Miss L Gardner; Distances 2 1/2l, 20l; Time: 6.29.
The Lamb Inn Restricted for Novice Riders: Lanicene (Mr D Cook) 1; Kiwi Trap (miss C Atkinson) 2; Jolly Hopeful (Miss A Cole) 3. Mr S Flook; 3l, 6l; 6.30.
The Charles Stanley Ladies’ Open: Croix De Guerre (Miss K Hobbs) 1; Wages (Miss C Roddick) 2; Urban Rebel (Miss A Smith-Maxwell) 3. Mrs M McGuiness; 2l, 15l; 6.21.
The Knight Frank Men’s Open: Southwestern (Mr N Harris) 1; Zesta Fiesta (Mr D Edwards) 2; Diamond Monroe (Mr P John) 3. Mrs C Scott; 15l, 15l; 6.28.
The Exeter Racecourse Intermediate: Knightsbridge Hill (Mr D Edwards) 1; Simon’s Seat (Miss R Green) 2; Fort of Gold (Rev S Beveridge) 3.Dist, dist; 6.39.
The Hi-Line Contractors SW Ltd Open Maiden Div 1: Tot of the Knar (Miss P Gundry) 1; Amber Dawn (Mr J Barnes) 2; Cardinal Sinn (Mr N Harris) 3. P Gundry and E Walker; 12l, 15l; 6.29.
The Wilkinson Grant Open Maiden Race Div 2: So Long (Mr N Harris) 1; Martin Pitchwood (Mr J Barnes) 2; Uncle Matthew (Miss P Gundry) 3. Mrs C Scott; 8l, hd; 6.39.
The DQS Open Maiden Div 3: Rockwithacaveman (Miss P Gundry) 1; Oopsmylord (Mr D Mansell) 2; Mr Woodrow (Miss L Gardner) 3. Miss P Gundry and E Walker; 20l; 25l; 6.38.
The Crediton Milling Open Maiden Race Div 4: Margam Abbey (Miss L Rowsell) 1; Arvakur (Miss P Gundry) 2; Miss Razzmatazz (Mr R Bliss) 3. Mr D Brace; 20l; 1 1/2l; 6.43.