WRITTEN BY GRANVILLE TAYLOR
“Sometimes I wonder what I’m a gonna do. But there ain’t no cure for the summer time blues….”
From a song by rock and roll singer Eddie Cochran 1938-1960
We will have to find something to do until November. Royal Ascot perhaps? It’s getting towards that time when the point-to-pointers and their entourage are put out to grass so we will miss our regular pointing fix. June can be hot and it was a lovely summer evening which drew a good crowd to the Eggesford fixture at Upcott Cross, postponed from its original April date due to waterlogging. Ironically the course had been watered this time to provide good going. Well done to the Heard family.
After six successive National jockeys championships, Will Biddick will be handing over his title to Alex Edwards this year, but showed all his skills and determination in the saddle at Upcott Cross with a hat trick.
Sixteen Letters initiated the Biddick treble with an easy Hunt race victory in the colours of John Symes. This tall, rangy gelding looks a nice prospect. He is in the care of rookie trainer Claire Harris, who holds the pointing licence for the Kayley Woollacott yard.
Biddick’s other winners were each saddled by Teresa Clark. Mistress Massini, bought from Teresa’s brother Anthony Honeyball, and scoring for the third time this season, made all the running to take the Mixed Open for the Culverwells Racing Club. The seven-year-old mare ran on gamely to hold strong finishing Beat The Tide, who was giving the winner a virtually impossible 17lbs, by a fast diminishing neck.
Similar front running tactics paid off on Pancrace in the Open Maiden. This time the winning margin was 20 lengths on the hitherto disappointing seven-year-old, who put his jumping problems behind him in no uncertain terms. “He hardly jumped a fence and I had to pull him up at Trebudannon last time, but they have done a good job with him and he was foot perfect tonight,” said Biddick. A good looking son of Laveron, Pancrace changed hands for £35,000 as a three-year-old but could only finish third in a Wexford bumper for Gordon Elliott. He has obviously had his problems but certainly looked the part with more positive tactics employed here.
Will Biddick missed out on a four-timer since Stuart Penny’s chestnut mare Justu had finished runner up in the two and a half miles maiden. Sweet Lady Jane travelled from South Wales to take this event under Byron Moorcroft. This consistent six-year-old mare, owned by the rider’s partner Georgia Kerneys and trained by Kieran Price, drew clear in the home straight to win comfortably.
Gowell was backed down to 5-4 favourite to give the Cowbridge based rider a double in the Restricted, but had to give best to front running Moonlight Flyer. This Camilla Scott trained six-year-old was quickly following up his recent Bratton Down success under a positive ride from Christopher Barber. The young rider, a grandson of legendary pointing trainer Richard Barber, was giving himself an early birthday present as he turns 21 in a few days time.
Josh Newman rode his 15th winner of the season in the Intermediate as Steel Brush found the better finishing pace to head Culverwell at the last after the latter had led from the 15th fence. “He has to be produced late,” remarked trainer Keith Cumings of the winner, a good looking nine-year-old owned by Diana and Maurice Scott.
River Myth was saddled by Stuart Sampson to win the concluding Confined. The Midnight Legend mare is not the easiest of rides, but has now scored three times in the last six weeks for jockey Darren Andrews. “We came here instead of a hunter chase at Stratford on Friday,” said Terry Hamlin, who owns the seven-year-old in conjunction with John Gardener.
Funniest sight of the hot evening: Will Biddick cooling himself off after his third winner by completely submerging himself in the water trough in the paddock used to cool off the horses……….
Westcountry Videos filmed the meeting, order on 01884 840403 or through the website later in the week at www.westcountryvideos.co.uk
- Sunday 10th June 2018 Tiverton Staghounds, Bratton Down, Bratton Fleming, Exmoor EX31 4SG. 1st Race 2.00pm
- Saturday 16th June 2018 Torrington Farmers, Chapelton Barton, Umberleigh EX37 9EB. 1st Race 2.00pm
- Saturday 14th July 2018, Devon & Cornwall End of Season Point to Point Dinner & Dance, Mercure Exeter Rougemont Hotel, Queen St, Exeter EX4 3SP
- Entries and form guide: Eggesford Point-To-Point, Upcott Cross, Wednesday Evening 6th June 2018
- Preview: Eggesford Point-to-Point at Upcott Cross Wednesday Evening 6th June 2018
- Eggesford Postponed
- Fixtures rich in promise for the 2017/18 British point-to-point season