Written by: Donna Harris
It’s the turn of The Exmoor Foxhounds to host the second of three fixtures to take place at the popular course known as Bratton Down, Bratton Fleming next Sunday 3rd June. Pony racing heads up the action at 12 noon, with five pony races including National Championship races. Then follows the main six race card commencing at 2pm. Over 90 entries have been received.
The opening Members race is sponsored by RSM Beares in conjunction with B Thorne & Son Agricultural Engineers, with entry Kapricorne standing out having finished in the frame on three of his runs this season for trainer Rebecca Branton. Although held into fourth at the previous meeting here, he could come up against I’ll Tell You When from the Claire Hitch yard who looked to be ready to challenge when falling late on at Holnicote earlier this month under jockey Bryan Carver.
The Rosettes Direct-sponsored Restricted race follows, in which Hugos Horse could follow up on his maiden win at Axe Vale for the Rose Loxton team, Moonlight Flyer is another suggestion having won his maiden at the previous meeting here for trainer Camilla Scott. Burn Baby Byrne holds an entry for trainer Evan Williams and daughter Isabel to ride. Isabel is currently leading the National Novice Ladies title by one point and should be in the mix if making the trip down from Wales.
Up next is the Bray Leino-sponsored Ladies race in which Angels Hill for Heidi Lewis should put up a good performance if following up on their Holnicote win and second here at the first meeting by a neck to the Ed Walker-trained La Madonnina. La Madonnina also holds an entry again here and will be among the bookies favourites. The two could come up against another Evan Williams-trained entry Aerlite Supreme, who is already on a hat-trick of wins this season when scoring at Ystradowen(twice) and Llwyn Ddu. His recent three and a quarter lengths second behind the useful Patricktom Boru at Lower Machen could help steal this for the Williams family.
The Men’s Open is sponsored by Moore Scarrott Accountants with those catching the eye being Stafford Cross and Little Windsor winner Fly West for Will Biddick and trainer Ed Walker, Flete Park and Trecoed winner Ramble On for Byron Moorcroft and There’s No Panic a previous course winner who’s another option for Will Biddick to ride.
Ashley Farrant and the Kingdon family sponsor the Conditions race which is run in memory of Donna Kingdon, 29 are entered and the race looks wide open with Fly West for team Walker, Hackwood Park and Kingston Blount winner Change Of Luck from the Alan Hill team, Derksen a winner this season at Knightwick, Peper Harow and Tabley among the entries. Also Honest Deed holds an entry and clocked up another win last weekend for team Summersby when taking the Conditions race by a head at Upcott Cross. Winter Garden for the Ryan Chapman team won here at the previous meeting and cannot be dismissed on that form.
The Open Maiden race closes the days event, with entry Redmond Hill looking to deserve a win soon having clocked up five runner-up places for Matt Griffiths. Port Navas from the Teresa Clark team has clocked up a couple of third places at Milborne St Andrew in March and at the Great Trethew February meeting, and looks to have the booking of Will Biddick aboard. This race is sponsored by The Old Station House Inn, Blackmoor Gate.
The course is located at Bratton Down, Bratton Fleming 9m NE of Barnstaple on A399, 11m North of South Molton- EX31 4SG. Entrance is £10 per person to a maximum of £30 per car, children under 16 free. Early bird tickets can be purchased from https://www.futureicticketing.ie/client/brattondown . Dogs welcome on leads only.
A reminder that the re-arranged meeting at Upcott Cross, Halwill Junction takes place on Wednesday 6th June, Seven races are on offer with the first up at 5pm. Entrance to the course is £10 per person, children under 16 free. Location is 2m South of Halwill junction, off A3079 – EX21 5AE.
Met Office 5 day forecast: Arlington Court (3.5 miles)
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