Punters (and bookies) were a bit thin on the ground for the Western meeting at Wadebridge. The showground was in great shape though and most races proved competitive. It is always a pleasure to monitor the betting market in comfort in the barn – but I am probably getting a bit soft.
BEUVRON (1-2 into 1-3) had already proved that his French form was no fluke at Black Forest, and made all the running here in the Ladies’ Open against sole rival IRON CHANCELLOR (6-4 out to 2’s).
The eight strong Intermediate was a good betting heat, but punters chose to overlook the eventual winner SUPREME DANEHILL. He had some decent previous form but punters could not forgive his last lack lustre effort at Larkhill, and he was easy to back at 11-1 (100-9 to us old ‘uns). Will Biddick’s mount LITTLE CORNHAM (6-4 to evens fav) looked well, but again found one too good for him. TOLATETOBEEARLY closed in from 14’s to 12’s and landed each way bets, but WHAT ABOUT WILL (11-4 into 2.s) could only finish fifth.
BERTIE’S WAY (25’s to 14’s) caught the eye in his division of the Open Maiden. A half brother to winning pointer Brockwell Park, he was having only his second outing. He stayed on well after a considerate ride to finish third and will have gained a lot for this experience. .In the same race FOLLOW THE PAINT (5-2 to 7-4) once again proved the bookies friend, this time chasing home the front running RACEY LACEY (5-2 in a place to 5-4 fav) who had finished behind Follow The Paint at the last Wadebridge meeting .
I thought that BEFORE THE WAR looked in need of the race in the Men’s Open. I was wrong – but at least trainer Ed Walker confirmed my impression afterwards (that is in the winner’s enclosure). Ed confirmed it was “a bit of a surprise”, but his useful eight-year-old swooped on the favourite WORKING TITLE (5-4 to pennies into 10-11) immediately after jumping the last.