Written by: Donna Harris
The South Pool Harriers hold the first of two meetings to be held at the popular Buckfastleigh track next Sunday 19th February.The first pony racing of the season also takes place here at 11am with three races which are sponsored by Toad Hall Cottages, followed by the main seven race card which starts at 12 noon, 135 entries have been received. The feature race of the day is the Winners Only Mixed Open Totnes & Bridgetown-sponsored “West Country Champion Chase” which has a total prize fund of £1000 and once again has attracted top quality entries from around the country. These include recent Wadebridge winner Sobre Tresor for trainer Chloe Newman, dual season winner Full Trottle who was only just denied a season’s hat trick by Porlock Bay at Black Forest Lodge for trainer Laura Thomas, Blazing Whale a winner of this race two seasons ago could be fresh from winning a Novice riders race at Chaddesley Corbett last weekend. The ex Paul Nicholls-trained There’s No Panic is another to have run notably well when a short head second at Wadebridge then ridden by Pippa Glanville for trainer Michael Biddick. The talented mares Miss Gotaway and Roseyroo could well make use of their mares weight allowance and be in the mix.
21 entries have been received for the opening Confined race which is sponsored by Fortress Hassall Law Ltd of Kingsbridge. The two Dean Summersby entries Chosen Lucky and Robin de Souza stand out with the yard in sparkling form, providing jockey Darren Edwards with plenty of winners already this season. Another entry which may figure is Kernel Victor, out of the Ed Walker yard, he won the Intermediate race here last season and has won five of his eight starts so far and runner up in the remaining three. Trainer Michael Biddick could choose this race for There’s No Panic over the Mixed Open, the track should suit and he is likely to be one of the bookies favourites.
The Exeter Racecourse-sponsored Intermediate race is another packed full of quality entries with Devon based trainer Kayley Woollacott hoping it can be an opportunity for Back In June to follow up on the treble he scored last season.They could be up against strong challengers in the way of the Jack Barber-trained Dunn’s River, Richard Mitford-Slade’s Applesolutely and the Clare Cook-trained and recent Chipley Park winner Sammy Blade among the entries.
There are two divisions of the Open Maiden for horses and geldings, with the Ed Walker-trained As I See It a suggestion in the first division after his third at Barbury in January when ridden by Will Biddick. This race is sponsored by Luscombe Maye.
The second division of the Open Maiden could go the way of Treod Y Melin for local trainer Chris Honour, having run an impressive neck second at Barbury in January under jockey Darren Edward. The ex- Phillip Hobbs trained Good Idea is now back in the yard of Sue Popham, he should provide some fun for the three joint owners to follow. With the Kings Theatre sired Clenagh Castle entered for the Jack Barber team also a notable one with the high strike rate the yard has with its maiden horses. This division has been sponsored by Ashburton Motors.
The Jockey Club sponsor the Mares Maiden race which has Kintamini entered, a talented young mare from the Sam Holdsworth team who was unlucky to be held a short head in second place at Black Forest Lodge, for owner Charles Stanley recently. One of the outside Welsh raiders Ann Scott could be the main danger, having looked promising last season having finished in the frame on all three of her starts for trainer Simon Jones.
Finally up is the Stags of Totnes-sponsored Restricted race, in which Restless Rebel is a suggestion after his maiden win at Chipley Park. Another recent Chipley Park winner is Palmaria who looks ready to progress after winning the mares maiden race, having made all under jockey Will Biddick. Local trainer Nikki Frost has Black Forest Lodge maiden winner Bogoss Du Perret entered who could go well again for jockey Bryony Frost.
On course facilities are excellent viewing, catering marquee with licensed bar (real ale), great locally sourced food, homemade cakes & hot drinks, plus various trade stalls offering an fabulous family day to end the half term week.
Course is located off A38 at Lower Dean (TQ11 0LT) Entrance is £10 pp (max £30 per car) children under 16 free.
General enquiries: The Secretary, 01548 531 490