Preview: Mid Devon Point-to-Point at Black Forest Lodge, Sunday 28th February 2016

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Written by: Donna Harris

A trip back to the popular Point-to-Point horse racing course at Black Forest Lodge is a must for all country loving family folk next weekend where the Mid Devon host their meeting on Sunday Feb 28th. Pony racing heads up the action at 12 noon and 12.30pm with two pony races on offer.

The main seven race card follows at 1pm and has attracted over 100 entries with the Open Maiden race already having been divided. The feature race of the day looks to be the Tozers Solicitors-sponsored Men’s Open race with ten quality entries headed by the Devon based trainer Emma Oliver’s Double Bank. This 13 year old dual Taunton Hunter Chase winner has won previously at this course and ran well when four lengths third at Wadebridge carrying top weight earlier this month. Those entered to take him on are outside raiders Premier Portrait already on a seasons hat-trick, and would have been four from four had young jockey Gus Levinson not been disqualified for not weighing in. Doctor Braveheart another on a hat-trick of wins is trained by David Brace who has a good strike rate at this course. Tony Star looks an interesting entry having previously been trained by Phillip Hobbs who has a Chase win under rules when ridden by Richard Johnson at Ludlow to his credit.

The Molyneaux Financial Planning-sponsored Ladies Open race also has quality entries with Devon based Hunter Chase veteren Coombe Hill entered. Trained and ridden by Millie Wonnacott. Coombe Hill has a total of six Hunter Chase wins and eleven Point-to-Point wins to his credit, and was narrowly denied a further win when a head second here at the January meeting.The Keith Cumings -trained What About Will should be considered having won his Restricted race at this course last season under jockey Vicky Wade. Outside raiders looking to challenge could be recent Wadebridge winner Sobre Tresor having won by twelve lengths ahead of Ray Diamond and Get It On from the Angela Rucker team who also catches the eye having run a good second in a Ladies Open at Barbury in December.

The Confined race sponsored by supporters of the Mid Devon could go the way of the Dean Summersby-trained Robin De Souza, a winner of all three of his Point starts to date including a win at this track when winning his restricted having stayed on well under Darren Edwards. Also entered is the Sue Popham-trained Iron Chancellor, a Hunter Chase winner who loves the soft going and ran a neck second at Wadebridge earlier this month when sent off odds-on favorite under Sean Houlihan. Whenharrymetsally from the Keith Cumings team is another catching the eye, having won well at Chipley Park in January when beating odds on favorite Posh Totty that day.

Sedgemoor Top Bid could fly the flag for the area if snatching the Intermediate race to follow up on his neck win at Wadebridge under jockey Lee Drowne.  Those looking to challenge could be Chipley Park winner Stony Road, Thorpe Lodge winner Minella Friend and Paddycards who ran second here in the intermediate race at the last meeting. Commanche Conflict looks to be a new recruit for the Alice Plume team and has shown some good place form in Intermediate company last season. The Intermediate race is sponsored by B.J. Barkwell & Sons and the Lyndridge Residential Home.

In the Subaru Restricted race the Harriet Brown-trained Creative Inerta could go well having won his maiden race here in January under jockey Ben Clarke, the combination were travelling well at Barbury two weeks ago before falling three out. Itchymei’mscratch from the Gareth Moore team is another suggestion having finished second in a 17- runner race at Cocklebarrow in January.

Two divisions of the Open Maiden end the days events, those entries having shown promise in the first division are Kilcoman Wizard having clocked up four seconds last season and deserves a win soon, Goodnight Sweetheart after his four lengths second at Larkhill earlier this month and the Ben Clarke-trained Looking Glass for his seconds at Wadebridge and Barbury. With Dark Gesture catching the eye in the second division of the Maiden, having run second here at the last meeting and looks sure to improve for the run, Nothing Personal and Troubleshot are two others showing improvement and could go close. Sponsors for the Open Maiden races are Devon Marquees.

The course offers excellent viewing, bookies, bar, hot refreshments and food, rail side parking for the disabled and many trade stands.

Entrance is £10 per person up to a maximum of £30 per car with five passengers. Children under 16 free. Dogs on leads welcome.

Course is located at Kenton near Exeter off A380 Postcode EX6 AHR

Useful Information:

Met Office 5 day forecast: Exe Estuary, 2.7 miles from EX6 8HR at the same altitude

BBC Travel News: Devon

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