Tag Archives: The Eaglehaslanded

Preview : Axe Vale Point-to-Point, Stafford Cross, Sunday 26 April 2015

Written by: Donna Harris

Hameldown Tor could be out looking for his fourth win of the season, for owners the Otter Club, in the Lee Clifford Engineering-sponsored Mixed Open at Stafford Cross this weekend. It is the turn of the Axe Vale to host their Point-to-Point meeting, near Seaton, Exeter, on Sunday 26th April. Local trainer Ed Walker scored a double last weekend, with Hameldown Tor taking the Mixed Open at Flete Park, and Level Spirit, another for the Otter Club, took the Confined race. Both are entered again here, and either are options for Robbie Henderson to ride. The challengers could be from the in-form Jack Barber team, with both Posh Totty and Subtle Sovereign having won recently under Will Biddick.

With pony racing heading up the action at 12 noon, this promises to be a great day out for all the family. Nearly 100 entries have been received for the main seven race card, which kicks off with the Beviss & Beckingsale-sponsored Members race at 1.30pm. Hameldown Tor also holds an entry in the members race, without him in the equation, Tandori is one to consider, from the Paul Phillips team, a previous course winner here, and ran a good second at Hackwood Park last month.

J & FJ Baker sponsor the Confined race in which Kostaquarta, another from the Barber team, could run well and follow up on his win at Milborne St Andrew. Louis Pasteur would need to improve on his recent second at Charlton Horethorne, Steeltown and Fiulin both ran well in a Hunter Chase at Exeter on Monday and could figure here if turning out again.

The Intermediate race has been sponsored by Martin Diplock Estate Agents, entry Cold Knight catches the eye, he is progressive and could go one better than his recent second at Andoversford, when sent off favourite that day. Sonoftheking is another to consider, also having run second in an Intermediate race, is also progressing well for the Nicola Martin team.

Harry Cobden won a Handicap Chase at Wincanton, whilst riding Ulck Du Lin for Paul Nicholls last weekend, he then made it to Littlewindsor the same afternoon to win on Cock Of The Rock. Harry’s possible mount in the Lentells Accountants-sponsored Novice Riders race is Silver Token, having clocked up four wins so far this season they are the likely favourites. Loose Preformer has been impressive, owned/trained and ridden by farrier Hedley Webb, they have won all three of their starts so should go close. Mic’s Delight for owner/trainer jockey Jennifer Davenport is likely to set the pace, and will put up a bold show.

The Restricted race is sponsored by Subaru, this could go the way of another Ed Walker trained entry On Your Max, having run close seconds in two restricted races this season. Both Royalzaro and Angleforcharlie could improve on their recent maiden wins and be in the mix. Gleannacreim from the Charlotte Hawker team, and Sparkling Miss from the Michael Miller team are other entries to note if the going stays on the good side.

The Scott Rowe Solicitors-sponsored Open Maiden race could go the way of the Milan sired San Satiro from the Barber team, the four-year old is yet to make his debut run. He is a half brother to The Eaglehaslanded, who took this race last season, and is owned by champion National Hunt trainer Paul Nicholls, he could be another horse for the future. Whatastormnorm ran well at both Great Trethew meetings, clocking up a second and third. Queens Law looked to find the going to testing when third at Upcott Cross, and is another who could appreciate the drier ground.

On course facilities include bar, hot refreshments, bookies and a number of trade stands. Entrance is £10 car & driver, £25 car load, pedestrians £10.

Location is Stafford Cross, nr Seaton (off A3052, 20m from M5 Junction 30 – EX24 6HZ)

Useful Information

Met Office 5 day forecast: Beer Youth Hostel (1.3 miles)

BBC Travel News: DevonCornwallSomerset;

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HEAVY April showers, which included a vicious hail storm for good measure, punctuated the afternoon at Stafford Cross which featured a second double of the weekend for Will Biddick.

After two successes at Woodford on the previous day, Minella Fifty took the champion jockey to the 30 winner mark in his quest for a third successive title when making all to win the Mixed Open at his leisure in the colours of Exmoor based owner/trainer Claire Hitch.

Biddick added to his score in the last race when newcomer The Eaglehaslanded ran away with the 10-runner Open Maiden. This Milan four-year-old is owned and trained by Paul Nicholls who said, “We bought him at the Land Rover (Goffs) sale and he is a half brother to Pepe Simo who won a lot of races for the yard. He has been very backward and is not a bumper sort, so this is the best way of bringing him on. He will be put away now.”

Fresh from receiving his jump trainers’ trophy at Sandown on the previous day, Nicholls watched his 16-year-old daughter, Megan, win the Novice Riders’ event on Join Together. Rose Loxton now handles this ex-Nicholls inmate for owner Wendy Fogg, and the nine-year-old exuded class to defeat Barneys Mate (Philip Miller) and Francis du Mesnil (Lucy Mager) in a good finish. Megan is battling with Katy Lyons for the National Lady Novice Rider title, and bounced back from a nasty fall on Easter Monday to ride her 8th winner of the season here.

Ed Walker saddled the first two winners on the card in Minutes Later and Level Spirit. Danny Burton was paying his first visit to the track and partnered Minutes Later to win the Hunt race for Ross Willmington, a joint master of the Axe Vale, and Alistair Holder. “This is my first horse and first winner. We bought him at the hunt Christmas auction at Branscombe village hall for a bit of fun,” laughed Ross. Jockey Danny Burton is based with Alan King and was riding his second winner of the campaign.

Robbie Henderson has been chasing Will Biddick hard for the National Men’s title, and Level Spirit became his 22nd winner of the season when just mastering the favourite Notus de la Tour in the Confined. A winner of three of his five races this season for the Otter Club syndicate, nine-year-old Level Spirit was described by his trainer as, “Really tough. It was too tacky for him last time at Upcott Cross.” Biddick has extended his National title lead this weekend such that his challenger confessed, “I have no chance of catching him now.” With seven weeks of the season left , maybe Robbie has been taking mind games tips from the Chelsea football team manager.

Bryony Frost rode her 9th winner of the season when getting Brackenwood, trained by her mother Nikki, home in the Intermediate. David Prichard made a bold bid to steal the race on the mare Roseyroo, but after a neck and neck battle on the long run-in, Brackenwood just got his head in front where it mattered. “Bryony got him into a nice rhythm and he is a genuine horse,” remarked Bryony’s father Jimmy Frost. “He is home bred and was difficult as a youngster and Jamie Thomas did a good job with him when he worked for us,” added Jimmy.

Nikki Frost just missed out on a training double when Donpierre (Ben Robarts) was narrowly denied by Midnight Breeze (Ceiran Gethings) in the Restricted. A lightly raced eight-year-old by Midnight Legend, the winner was bred by his owner Helen Stoneman and is trained by Ollie Bush. “He is the last produce of Fly the Wind and has not been the easiest. He has needed lots of patience and I have nursed him all along,” said the owner. The successful jockey, 19-year-old Ciaran Gethings, shows much promise and is beginning to get rides under rules for his employer Philip Hobbs.


Brackenwood (9-4 into 7-4) and Roseyroo ( 6’s to 9-2) were nicely backed before fighting out the finish of the Intermediate. They finished well clear of their rivals and the form looks solid enough.

Donpierre had caught the eye in finishing fourth on his English pointing debut at Upcott Cross (my official SP 40-1 that day). The Nikki Frost trained gelding was offered at a very tight 7-4 here before easing to a more realistic 11-4 (3-1 in places). He is a winner in waiting but had to give best to the determined Midnight Breeze in the Restricted (3-1 and 100-30).

Lively outsiders in the Restricted included:-
Asian Miner ( 20’s to 12’s) look out for at Holnicote or Bratton Down
Last Minute Notice (20’s to 14’s) – added another “p” to his previous four – bookies friend
Noble Aran (20’s to 14’s) – finished remote fourth, his sole success came on fast ground

Interest in the Open Maiden centred on the previously unraced four-year-old The Eaglehaslanded. The combination of Paul Nicholls as his owner/ trainer and Will Biddick as his jockey sent the bookies into a frenzy and 1-2 was immediately chalked up.
With none of the big hitters prepared to invest, 4-6 and 8-11 became available before the off. The Nicholls gelding readily obliged, but the five-year-old runner-up Garden Whispers (20’s to 10’s) stayed on really well to finish second and Golden Squirell (12’s to 4’s) was far from disgraced in third.


Results of the Axe Vale meeting


Westcountry Videos filmed the meeting, order on 01884 840403 or through the website later in the week at www.westcountryvideos.co.uk


The following photographers were at the meeting: Bath photographic (Marcus Bath), Big Green Annual (John Beasley), Brian Armstrong, David Strange, and Tim Holt


Saturday 3rd May, Modbury Harriers Point-To-Point & Pony Races, Flete Park (near Ivybridge).
Monday 5th May, Stevenstone Point-To-Point, Vauterhill (near Torrington).

RESULTS: Axe Vale Point-To-Point, Stafford Cross, Sunday, 27th April 2014

Going: Good to soft, becoming soft

Hunt race (Sponsor; Beviss & Beckingsale Solicitors)
1 Minutes Later (Danny Burton) 4-1
2 Miss Cupcake (Will Biddick) 2-5 fav
3 ran; only two finished; 1 3/4l; 6m 30s
Trained by Ed Walker

Confined (J & FJ Baker & Co Ltd – Harry Parr Memorial Cup)
1Level Spirit (Robbie Henderson) 2-1
2 Notus de la Tour (Tom Chanin) 11-8 fav
3 Rush N Roll (Michael Legg) 12-1
5 ran; 2l; 15l; 6m 4s
Trained by Ed Walker

Mixed Open (Lee Clifford Engineering for the Graham Hollingworth Memorial Cup)
1 Minella Fifty (Will Biddick) 4-7 fav
2 Foynes Island (Rob Hawker) 7-2
4ran; only two finished; won by a distance; 6m 9s
Trained by Claire Hitch

Intermediate (Matford Land Rover – PF Penny Memorial Cup)
1 Brackenwood (Bryony Frost) 7-4 fav
2 Roseyroo (David Prichard) 9-2
3 Fresh’s Fever (Jamie Thomas) 12-1
8 ran; neck; 25l; 6m 1s
Trained by Nikki Frost

Novice Riders’ (Lentells Chartered Accountants – Graham Stuart Memorial Trophy)
1 Join Together (Megan Nicholls) 1-2 fav
2 Barneys Mate (Philip Miller) 4-1
3 Francis du Mesnil (Lucy Mager) 20-1
7 ran; 1 3/4l; 5l; 6m 8s
Trained by Rose Loxton

Restricted (Martin Diplock – Ruth Wilmington Memorial Cup)
1 Midnight Breeze (Ciaran Gethings) 100-30
2 Donpierre (Ben Robarts) 11-4 fav
3 Spot the Grey (Darren Edwards) 7-2
8 ran; neck ; 12l; 6m 14s
Trained by Ollie Bush

Open Maiden (Scott Rowe Solicitors- Stan Sweetland Memorial Cup)
1 The Eaglehaslanded (Will Biddick) 8-11 fav
2 Garden Whispers (Danny Burton) 10-1
3 Golden Squirell (Rob Hawker) 4-1
10 ran; 10l; 1 1/2l; 6m 20s
Trained by Paul Nicholls

Axe Vale Point-To-Point, Stafford Cross entries and form


Race Start time Link to entries and form for race
1st 13:30 Members Race
2nd 14:10 Confined Race
3rd 14:45 Mixed Open Race
4th 15:20 Intermediate Race
5th 15:55 Novice Riders Race
6th 16:30 Restricted Race
7th 17:05 4, 5, 6 & 7 year olds Open Maiden Race



f = fell u = unseated rider
p = pulled up k = knocked over
b = brought down c = carried out
d = disqualified ? = unreliable form
s = slipped up + = improving rating
r = refused blkd = baulked
ro = ran out t = took no part
(c) = course winner


NH = National Hunt
L = Length
Rest – Restricted
Nov = Novice
RT – Rating
PTP – Point to Point

An up to date form guide and synopsis of the horses entered at this meeting. Form figures for up to 6 outings appear. A dash(-) is used to separate 2013/14

form from 2012/13 form. Figures preceded by an oblique (/) represents 2011/12 form or earlier. Horses marked with an asterisk (*) indicates National Hunt

form. The higher the rating the better the form.

No responsibility can be accepted for any errors which may be considered to have occurred.

Produced by Jeff Guyett of Westcountry Videos.

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Preview : Axe Vale Point-To-Point, Stafford Cross, Sunday April 27

The Axe Vale host this weekend’s Point-to-Point horse racing at Stafford Cross, near Seaton, East Devon on Sunday 27th April.

Pony racing, sponsored by Rob Perry Marine, head’s up the action at 12 noon, followed by the main seven race card, starting at 1.30pm. Over 100 entries have been received.

In the opening Members race, sponsored by Beviss & Beckingsale Solicitors, the Les Jefford-trained entry Miss Cupcake won this race last year, coming home ten lengths ahead of another entry, Our Georgie Girl trained by Ed Walker. Miss Cupcake ran well this February when two and a quarter lengths second to Un Ami at Badbury Rings.

J & F J Baker sponsor the Confined race in which trainer Rose Loxton holds two entries, Join Together who under jockey Megan Nicholls recently won at Cothelstone, and Current Event a winner of five Chases and a Hurdle race. Notus De La Tour stayed on well when second at Upcott Cross, his impressive form includes second in a Grade One Novice Chase. Whenharrymetsally from the Keith Cumings team is another to consider, having won at Great Trethew in March.

The Lee Clifford sponsored Mixed Open, could see Will Biddick get the leg up on Minella Fifty from the Claire Hitch team. The combination having wins this season at Cothelstone and Charlton Horethorne. Will Biddick rode his first ever winner at this track in 2004, when coming home in front on the Ross Oliver-trained Let’s Fly. This weekend may well see him return, looking to add to his total of well over 200 winners. John Daniell and Round Tom should not be left out of the equation if turning out again after their wins last weekend.

The Mythologist trained by Guy & Sophie Henderson and ridden by son Robbie, hasn’t been seen since his win at Ston Eston , but is highly regarded by his connections and could go off favourite in the Matford Land Rover sponsored Intermediate race. Master Hooper from the Robert Chanin team is another to consider, as is Soul Native having taken the 16 runner restricted at Cothelstone earlier this month under jockey Vicky Wade.

In the CA Club Novice Riders race, Join Together under Megan Nicholls, if not in the earlier confined race, and Barneys Mate for Christopher Barber could have a re match. The two met at Charlton Horethorne when Barneys Mate was caught on the run in by the determined Nicholls getting Join Together up to win by a length. Ladyvie is another likely to be in the mix for jockey Hannah Welch, having run second at Buckfastleigh and Cothelstone.

The Alice Pearn-trained Johnny No Cash looks a strong challenger for the Martin Diplock Estate Agents sponsored Restricted race, having run second behind Pure Oxygen at Cotley. This race may well be divided on the day having attracted 27 entries. Others to consider are Midnight Breeze for the Ollie Bush team, after his recent win at Portman. Donpierre for Ben Robarts having run well at Upcott Cross, and the Michael Miller-trained Sparkling Miss having won her Maiden at Milborne St Andrew, then ran three lengths third at Badbury Rings in a Restricted won by Posh Totty.

Concluding the day’s event, is the Open Maiden race sponsored by Scott Rowe Solicitors. Richard Barber holds three entries, General Ginger, Whataknight, and Willow Bird. Mount Prospex trained by Jill Dennis could follow up on his third at Upcott Cross. Paul Nicholls has entered The Eaglehaslanded and market support could be worth following.

The course offers a good party atmosphere, where you can choose to either bring your own picnic, or use the excellent catering facilities on site. There is also a Tote, Bookmakers, bar and trade stands.

Entrance is £20 car and occupant’s, or £10 car and driver.

Course is located at Stafford Cross, nr Seaton, off A3052 Post Code EX24 6HZ