Yesterdays’ Wynnstay Hunt meeting between the flags at
Eaton Hall, near Chester had almost everything. There were the usual thrills
and spills and a hint of controversy thrown in for good measure, sadly the
only thing missing was a few more runners, there were only 33 runners to
contest the 8 races.
A huge crowd of around 8,000 were on hand in glorious
sunshine to witness an end of an era in the Ladies Open. The legendary super
tough pointer Ballisteros, the winner of 23 point-to-points, three of which
have been this year, ran in his last point to point race at the course.
However there was to be no fairytale ending for the old boy, who went off
the 4-6 jolly under Jane Williams. The combination had no answer for the
improving mare Jackie Jarvis who beat the jolly soundly by 12 lengths under
Katherine Diggle in the fastest time of the day in 6 minutes dead. The
winner is trained by John Swindells at Tarporley, who is keen to run her in
the Bangor Final providing the ground is fast.
If Shropshire rider Richard Burton retains his National
Riders Championship, he will look back on two of the easiest winners of his
tally at the Cheshire course. The first leg came with Jemaro in the
Mens’Open, who made almost every yard of the running under Burton to beat
the only other finisher Harry Hotspur by a distance. The winner is trained
at Sheriff Hales by Caroline Beasley for her father Jeremy. Caroline was
full of praise for her charge afterwards she said, ”I have had him since
he was an unbroken 4yr old and he is still the same then as he is now. He is
so enthusiastic about his racing and never gives in. I wish I had a yard
full of horses like him”. Gary Hanmer pulled up the Peter Morris trained
Lord Of The West at the last fence when he looked tired and exhausted after
trying to go the pace with Jemaro. Anthony Perry, the senior steward on duty
at the course sent a vet immediately to the last fence to examine the horse,
and he also interviewed Hanmer, which resulted in the stewards not holding
an enquiry. I have always found Anthony Perry to be a fair man and he
explained his decision to the press afterwards. He said, ”The stewards
took evidence from the vet who said the horse was not marked and that he
recovered his normal heart beat after the race and we were satisfied that
Hanmer had not breached any rules.”
Burton went on to complete a double and record his 33rd
winner of the season when Karzhang walked over in the Intermediate, also
trained by Caroline Beaseley, her 6th of the season.
Everything comes to he who waits, which was reflected in the
aptly named Robert The Rascal winning the first division of the Maiden under
John Barlow by a fast diminishing half a length from Snitton Salvo. This was
the winners first win in his 5th season as a maiden. The Scottish
Reel gelding is trained near Macclesfield by Charmaine James for owner Ceri
James from Addlington in Cheshire, who said afterwards that his horse had
had problems, but always seemed to like really fast ground.
The second division of the Maiden went to Mullarts Lad who
won readily by 12 lengths under Stuart Ross from Hendrix. The winner is
owned and trained at Rugeley by Jane Froggatt, who bought her charge
privately in Ireland last December.
There is nothing like keeping things in house with the
Wynnstay Hunt. New Ross, trained by the Wynnstay Committee Chairman Jonathon
Turner at Prees Heath, near Whitchurch, won the Michael Worthington Novice
Riders race with his daughter Annabel in the plate, who had to pull out all
the stops the repel the fast finishing Wychnor King by a length at the post.
This is the 22-year-old riders first season pointing and her second winner
on the horse, as she had earlier won on him at Larkhill. Annabel works
locally for Halls Estate Agents at Shrewsbury.
Malpas based rider Tessa Clark cemented her lead in the
ladies area championship after she notched up her 5th win of the
season on The Lord Roberts, who won unchallenged from flag fall by an easy
15 lengths from Royrace. The winner is trained not far from Tessa at Malpas
by Anne Hewitt for owner Marigold de Quincy.
Leighton trainer Jonathon Lee must be thinking this training game is easy after Dare provided him with his second winner in his first season. The Beveled gelding never came off the bit under David Barlow to beat Fornaught Alliance easing down by 15 lengths. The winner is owned by a syndicate from Welshpool, which consist of the trainer James Potter and Jim Blurton.