ROBBIE HENDERSON was crowned Devon & Cornwall champion male rider for the first time last season when his 32 winners also elevated the 25-year-old into second place for the National Championship behind his great friend Will Biddick.

“I am looking forward to the new season and have some very nice horses to ride,” enthused Robbie. “My ambition is to stay fit, enjoy it – and beat Will Biddick,” he added with a smile.

Robbie’s first winner under rules came in 2009 on his family owned good ‘chaser Ellerslie George in the Badger Ales Trophy at Wincanton. His passion for point-to-pointing had already been fashioned however when he partnered his first winner for his parents on Sahara Legend at the Warwickshire meeting on 5th May 2008. Three wins followed in 2009 thanks to Newbay Bob at the South Dorset and by two victories on the Cathy Hamilton trained Gunship at Larkhill. . His father Guy, chairman of Wincanton racecourse, and soon to become chief executive of Ascot racecourse, owned and trained two of Robbie’s best winners between the flags last season. These were The Mythologist and Glacial Oscar, who each won their respective races at the Dulverton Farmers fixture last season and are due to be seen out next month.

“I also won on King’s Wood from our yard at Flete Park, but he is really my mother’s hack and needs firm ground,” said Robbie.

His other prospective mounts in defence of his area title this season include Hameldown Tor, who he described as, “a bit under rated and a very good point-to-pointer.”  This ten-year-old is trained by Ed Walker, who sent out 21 winners last term and will probably provide plenty of Robbie’s mounts next season. “Blazing Whale and Level Spirit were two of my best winners last year for Ed and will be back. I also hope to ride for Marie McGuinness, Keith Cumings and Sally Alner,” he said.

The forthcoming season promises to be one of the best as far as Devon & Cornwall is concerned, and it would seem foolish to bet against Robbie Henderson in his quest to collect another area title.

Photo credit: Helen Stoneman
Photo credit: Helen Stoneman

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