Written by Donna Harris
The final race meeting of the current Point-to-Point season took place last Saturday at Umberleigh, where the Torrington Farmers hosted their event.
A huge crowd turned up to enjoy a superb days racing, whilst soaking up the summer sun. Picnic parties were plenty, and the atmosphere was buzzing. Devon trainer Dean Summersby enjoyed saddling the winner of the first race with Air Glider, in the Tattersalls Ireland-sponsored Members race. With area champion jockey Darren Edwards on board, Air Glider was sent off the odds on favourite with seven runners lining up. Too Scoops under jockey Josh Newman had set a good pace and tried to make all, but it was a shrewd ride by Edwards producing Air Glider to take up the running over the last fence to score a victory here. Emma Watson riding Le Clo De La Londe stayed on to snatch second place and securing her Area Ladies Novice title, with Too Scoops back in third. Team Summersby have enjoyed a very successful season, having taken the title for National leading trainer with seven or fewer horses. The jubilant trainer commented “ Air Glider is a lovely horse, always competitive, he also paraded the hounds at Royal Cornwall Show last week. He is up for sale, we would hope he could stay in the yard for next season.”
The Kivells-sponsored Restricted race also attracted seven runners, with Wild Ginger being sent off the bookies favourite. This race was equally competitive with Wild Ginger unable to fend off the strong challenge from Give Us Peace under 19 year old jockey Lucy Mager. With Give Us Peace taking up the running over the second last and battled on to win the race by a length, pleasing his followers who had backed him at a generous price of 20-1. Trained by Teresa Clark for The Culverwell Racing Club, spokesman and club member Phil Browne explained “ He is a very quirky horse and doesn’t travel well at all, he has finally come good here after winning his maiden at Larkhill.” Jockey Lucy Mager added “ I ride him out every day at home, he is a bit quirky, Teresa has been really kind to give me the ride on him.”
There were plenty more celebrations when Devon trainer Kayley Woollacott saddled the winner of the Davisons Accountants-sponsored Men’s Open race with Churchfield Champ under jockey Daniel Cherriman. It had been another seven runner race with both Really Unique and Forrardon Xmoor heading the betting. The two market leaders set a strong pace, but it was Churchfield Champ who found an extra gear up the final hill to go on to score an impressive ten length win for his new owner and jockey Daniel Cherriman. The delighted trainer explained “Daniel bought Churchfield Champ over the phone last week and said he would love to ride at him at this meeting. Daniel is huntsman of the Pychley and Churchfield Champ gave him his first winner. “ Daniel added “I held him up at the back but he pulled me to the front. He will go in training next season with Jo Messenger who is based in Northampton. We all made the trip down here today and it was worth it,” he beamed
Another long journey had been made by jockey current National Champion Lady jockey Gina Andrews, who took the winning ride on There’s No Panic in the Nancekivell & Co-sponsored Ladies Open race. Regular jockey Will Biddick had ushering duties at Ollie Greenall’s wedding, and offered the ride to Gina. There’s No Panic had made most of the running, having only been headed briefly by a challenge from Bound For Glory. Based in Warwickshire the 25 year-old jockey explained “They were going too slow, he jumped brilliantly and liked this ground. I have ridden 29 winners this season which has equalled my best ever record.”
The Barum Stud-sponsored Intermediate race held the biggest field of the day with nine runners, and this went to another Devon based trainer Stewart Reddaway’s Fourstar River, under jockey Matt Hampton. Fourstar River had displayed an excellent round of jumping and took up the running two fences from home, staying on to win by eight lengths. Stewart’s son Robert Reddaway spoke on behalf of the team explaining “ He has wanted hard ground all season, which we were never able to find. We shall retire him now and he will just go hunting.” The Reddaway family run a sheep and crop farm at Sampford Courtney. Jockey Matt Hampton added “ He has plenty of ability, the problem is we just couldn’t find the ground he likes, also he prefers a left handed track.”
Finally up was the Smallridge Bros-sponsored Open Maiden race which closed the Pointing season. Sullivans John was sent off the even money favourite and he did not disappoint his followers. Under jockey Lee Drowne, who kept the horse handy in the five runner race, and dominated on the final circuit going onto win by twelve lengths. It was a popular win for the Lewis family, with trainer Maria Lewis explaining “Sullivans John is owned by The Picnic Club which is made up by the Grandparents. Mel Smith Bloodstock Agent found him for us in Ireland, we plan that Heidi will ride him next season.” Jockey Lee Drowne added “ We all thought he had it in him, he has just taken time to strengthen.”
The Pony racing finals then followed with Jack Teague winning the 138cm race on Trellech Blithe Spirit. The 138cm Open race was won by Freddie Gingel on The Jobs No Straight, and the 148cm final going to Joshua Brown riding She’s A Lady. These races were kindly sponsored by Hatchmoor Veterinary Practice.
And that closes another action packed pointing season. The Devon & Cornwall Area Annual end of Season Dinner & Dance takes place on Saturday 1st July at the New Crowne Plaza, Plymouth. Tickets can be obtained through Katie Squire via email email@example.com.
Members Race sponsored by Tattersalls Ireland
1. Air Glider (IRE) 4/6 D Edwards
2. Le Clo De La Londe (FR) 7/2 Miss E Watson
3. Too Scoops (IRE) 3/1 J Newman
Winning Trainer Dean Summersby
Winning Owner Mr D Summersby & Mr N Banks
Restricted Race sponsored by Kivells
1. Give Us Peace (IRE) 20/1 Miss L Mager
2. Wild Ginger (GB) 6/4 C.Davies
3. Cider N’ Black (GB) 33/1 D.Andrews
Winning Trainer Teresa Clark
Winning Owner The Culverwell Racing Club
Men’s Open Race sponsored by Davisons Accountants
- Churchfield Champ (IRE) 7/1 D Cherriman
- American Legend (IRE) 16/1 C Davies
- Kyles Faith (IRE) 7/1 D Tompkins
Winning Trainer Kayley Woollacott
Winning Owner Daniel Cherriman
Ladies Open Race sponsored by Nance Kivell & Co
- There’s No Panic (IRE) 4/6 Miss G Andrews
- Bound For Glory (IRE) 9/4 Miss H Lewis
- Carpincho (FR) 6/1 Miss J Buck
Winning Trainer Mr M Biddick
Winning Owner Mr M Biddick
Intermediate Race sponsored by The Barum Stud
- Fourstar River (IRE) 4/1 Mr M Hampton
- Seenigora (GB) 9/2 A.Goshen
- Up To Al (IRE) 6/1 Miss E Yardley
Winning Trainer Stewart Reddaway
Winning Owner Stewart Reddaway
Open Maiden Race sponsored by Smallridge Bros
1. Sullivans John (IRE) evens Lee Drowne
2. Predestined (IRE) 7/2 Rex Dingle
3. Angie Vilorbaine (FR) 5/2 Miss G Andrews
Winning Trainer Maria Lewis
Winning Owner The Picnic Club
Pony Racing Report
The current crop of Devon and Cornwall pony racers basked in the sunshine at Umberleigh for the two area finals and an open 138 race – while two of their predecessors, Josie Gordon and Meg Nicholls, were preparing to ride at Royal Ascot.
First to go to post were the 138 area finalists and it was a battle from the off.
Joshua Brown on Talponciau Perfect Print got a flying start but Taylor Fisher on Downhills Master Alfie was in hot pursuit and the pair scorched around the corner, by which time the field had bunched up behind them.
Coming off the turn, first season jockey Jack Teague had Trellech Blithe Spirit in the driving seat but it was far from over.
Brown got Talponciau Perfect Print back up to lead and the pair were nip and tuck to the line where Teague prevailed to take the title.
Downhills Master Alfie was third with Ted Hunt on Glin Road running on well to be fourth.
The 138 Open saw Fergus Gillard lay down the law on Veno Star and it took Freddie Gingell to the corner to catch him on The Jobs Not Straight. The pair battled on uphill, Gingell winning. Archie Stamp rode a cracking race on Mayday Black Mink to be just overhauled by Jack Dace on Crofthill Montague and Kelsie Beilby on Bejowans Bouquet who were third and fourth.
It was 18-year-old Bejowans Bouquet’s last race and the pony has been partnered by Heidi Lewis, Tina Smith, Tyler Heard and Kelsie in the Devon and Cornwall Area.
The 148 was a combined Area final and open race. Once again Fergus Gillard pushed on in a bid to win from the front. Joshua Brown on his new pony She’s A Lady had other ideas and was breathing down his neck, with Igozuminov and James Armstrong close up.
The front two drew clear off the bend. Motor Edd made late progress to be second behind She’s A Lady, Hawkesfield Flyer was third and one to lose out was fourth placed Charlotte Summersby on Vadlawalkover, the dour stayer having barely got into his stride by the finish on the short course.
First D and C pony home was Motor Edd, followed by Vadlawalkover, Tamby Welch on Tarka third, Chad Bament on Dandy Heights fourth.
The Area prizes will be presented at the joint awards night with Wessex at Exeter Racecourse, late July date tbc.