The betting ring at Wadebridge is much different to other point-to-point courses. Our bookie friends count their winnings in comfort indoors in a huge barn.
In reality it is more than a spacious barn. Apart from the bookmakers, it includes bar and restaurant facilities (home made food and real ale), jockeys changing rooms, the weighing room, declarations rooms, and a shopping mall. All very nice when it rains.
IF there are any readers of this column (very welcome ) who have not been point-to-pointing at this Royal Cornwall Showground venue, I recommend a visit. Real value for money and you will never get your car stuck there because there are hard roads all round
So I am saying that it is a likeable place and almost a pleasure to lose money. I had a good go at that on Sunday when the finances certainly fell in the bookies favour. Only two of the seven races went to favourites.
Mic’s Delight (2’s in a place to 4-6) started the rot in the opener. The old boy ran well however to finish second to Rockinrolldixie (9-2 to 4’s). The winner was purchased in the summer by one of his joint owners Val Mason, and was well ridden on this occasion by Frenchman Nathan Vergne. The rider got the shock of his life however when his mount got down and rolled over like a playful child in the sand area on the way to the start. Monsieur Vergne, who works for the Philip Hobbs yard, had to walk his steed all the way to the start with broken reins. After that, his passage in the race was as smooth as silk, sauntering past his six opponents to win going away. Felicitations monsieur.
The Open Maiden attracted 10 runners in each division, each section providing a setback for favourite backers. Dragon De La Tour (4’s to 7-2) finally and deservedly got his head in front in the first section, beating the staying on Captain Cuckoo (solid 4’s) and Ragged Dream (16-1). Cuddle Up (20’s to 7’s) never showed, but Tarrytown (16-1) caught my eye with a promising run. I joined in the gamble on Will Biddick’s mount Rabunda (7-2 to 6-4 fav), who looked really well but clattered to the ground at the fourth.
Banco De Logos (4-6 to evens fav) looked the form horse in the other section, but was never really travelling. He could still atone. The winner Shelcomeonfortherun was easy to back (drifted to 12-1), but won impressively to give jockey David Prichard a double. A well made, long striding Flemensfirth mare with a few runs in Ireland behind her, she looks a nice prospect. Runner up Deise Gold (14’s to 12’s) is getting the hang of things, and third placed Mujadel (12’s to 8’s) is a winner in waiting.
Another lively gamble went astray when Purple N Gold (3’s in a place to 5-4 fav) faded to finish third behind the improving Double Captain (11-4) in the Ladies’ Open. The ex-David Pipe winning hurdler Purple N Gold may need to regain headgear.The winner was nicely handled by Naomi Sims and acts well on this track. Start Royal (11-2) is a pointing legend (28 wins including two hunter chases), and was a worthy runner up here.
So the punters were losing four nil, but then hit back with two winning favourites. Navanman (6-4 to 5-4) followed up his Buckfastleigh win with another game performance at the expense of second favourite Broadclyst (6’s to 6-4) in a good class Men’s Open. Broadclyst was tackling his first Open and is worth following. Honest Deed (11-2) ran a decent race to finish third.
Another jolly then went in as the Welsh trained Kensington Castle (6-4 to 5-4) scored in a tight finish in the Intermediate. In Arrears (11-4) ran extremely well to be second, but was punching above her weight here and would be of interest in a Restricted.
The Leslie Jefford trained Raddon Top (7’s to 5’s) turned in a workmanlike performance to win the Restricted and give Bryan Carver a double. Bridge of Spies (20-1) stayed on well to outrun his odds in finishing second, with the Carmarthenshire mare She’s A Gangster signalling much promise for the season (solid 5-1) in finishing third.
After my woeful punting afternoon being charitable to the layers, I managed to salvage my bus fare home thanks to Raddon Top in the lucky last.
Whatever the outcome, I really like point-to-pointing at Wadebridge.
Westcountry Videos filmed the meeting, order on 01884 840403 or through the website later in the week at www.westcountryvideos.co.uk
- Sunday 6th January 2019 Larkhill Racing Club Larkhill, Amesbury, Wiltshire, SP4 8QT 1st Race 12 noon
- Sunday 13th January 2019 North Cornwall Royal Cornwall Showground, Wadebridge PL27 7JE 1st Race 11.30am
- Saturday 26th January 2019 Royal Artillery Larkhill, Amesbury, Wiltshire, SP4 8QT 1st Race 12 noon
- Sunday 27th January 2019 Tiverton Chipley Park, Milverton, Wellington TA21 0QY 1st Race 12 noon
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