With only seven bookmakers in attendance the market was naturally weak, but fair play to the seven stalwarts who laid pretty fair odds throughout the card.
Premier Portrait (9-4 into 7-4 fav) followed up his Black Forest victory in the Novice Riders’ contest under his first season jockey Gus Levinson. The young rider looked to have a lot to do entering the home straight but his experienced mount wore down Kirkleigh (Alastair Harvey) who seemed to be tiring when blundering at the last. Kirkleigh, looking in need of this race, drifted out to 3’s without much support and is worth keeping in mind for an early success on soft ground.. I also made a note of Beuvron, who made a favourable impression after coming over from France earlier this year. Easy to back at 5-2, he looked in need of the race and finished third without being pushed too much. He will improve for this.
The former Cheltenham festival winner Crack Away Jack looked the ticket in the Men’s Open (6-4 into evens fav). He had every chance entering the final circuit but found nothing when push came to shove and could only finish a moderate fourth behind course specialist Working Title (7-4 out to 9-4). This grand campaigner set off in front and stayed there, and is a great credit to the Cotswold based Drinkwater family. The feature of the betting was a plunge on Supreme Danehill who was noted at 14-1 early before closing in to 5-1 at the off. He was given every chance by Darren Edwards but got tired from the bottom bend and was well held by the winner. The other eye catcher was third placed Welstonedruid (7-2 out to 5’s) who stormed up the final climb and is sure to atone on a staying track.
Robert Chanin trains Welstonedruid, and the stable went on to occupy third spot in the Ladies’ Open with Sweet My Lord, who had shown a liking for the showground in the past. Despite being backed from 9-4 into a shade of odds-on (I returned 4-5 fav for the official SP), this ex-Irish gelding never looked like getting to grips with the winner Ray Diamond (2’s out to 5-2) and runner up Rebel Du Maquis (5=2 out to 4’s). Ray Diamond’s jockey Olivia Hutchings took a brave route to squeeze up the inner on the final bend, but her mount put plenty of daylight between himself and the runner up after jumping the last.
I must commend the placing of the four-year-old filly Applesolutely to win the Restricted. This Flete Park winner received weight from all her rivals and was always travelling like a winner under Sean Houlihan. The Apple Tree filly touched 9- 4 before settling at 2’s and upset the odds laid on Welsh Challenger Northgeorge (5-4 to 10-11).
Doctor Braveheart is a likeable youngster in the care of Welsh wizard David Brace. The Dr Massini six-year-old (5-4 jt fav) stayed on resolutely to beat the other joint favourite Sonoftheking (op evens) to win the Intermediate. Takamaru was backed from 9’s to 4’s here but seemed to go wrong entering the bottom bend and was promptly pulled up.
The closing Open Maiden produced a maximum field of 14, but there was little activity in the ring (I should say in the barn). The bookies are spoilt by operating in the cosy barn, but everyone seemed to have spent their money on the superb Christmas stalls operating in the same barn. The useful looking winner Robin De Souza boasted decent Irish Maiden form and duly obliged under Darren Edwards (5-2 into 5-4). He should be able to follow up in a Restricted.
REPORT & RESULTS
Westcountry Videos filmed the meeting, order on 01884 840403 or through the website later in the week at www.westcountryvideos.co.uk
- Sunday 10th January 2016, North Cornwall Point-To-Point, Royal Cornwall Showground, Wadebridge
[display-posts taxonomy=”category” tax_term=”Cornwall Hunt Club” taxonomy_2=”category” tax_2_term=”2015-16 Season”]