Abbreviated notes on this meeting since I flew in from holiday in Portugal on the Saturday afternoon, and my requests for the pilot to circle Kelso weren't heeded! Notes made from watching ATR replays.
Elsewhere, I've been trumpet blowing for MIDDLETON DENE since the same Kelso meeting last October, and this one recorded a win at Cheltenham on Friday, decently priced at 11/2.
LEG SPINNER won a hurdle at Perth earlier in the year, and capped the season off with a 14/1 victory in the Cesarewitch. Once again fine placing by his trainer Tony Martin.
2.10 2m 0.5f Handicap Hurdle
In-form BORDER TALE won this nicely, coming clear on the run-in from an 8 horse bunch led by TIGER KING.
2.45 2m 6.5f Nov Hurdle
FRANKIE FIGG won from the front at Hexham last time, and once gain set off at a decent lick. The field came back to him 4 out, but he had a fair bit in hand once push came to shove. MR WOODS made a decent hurdling debut and will surely win a minor novice event. THE SALTIRE TIGER was third but is well exposed at this level.
3.20 3m 1f Handicap Chase
This didn't look a great event. INNISFREE led but ran out of steam and is quite high in the handicap going into the winter. SPORTS EXPRESS plugged on well enough for victory, MISTER MAGNUM stayed on through tiring rivals for second and well exposed veteran HARLOV was third.
3.50 2m 6.5f C.J. Handicap Hurdle
Race was rendered a farce by confusion over safety flag wavers around 3 out. Some missed the flight, but the ones which jumped it were 'in the right'. HUMOUROUS 'won' the race but was disqualified. Even allowing for missing the hurdle he had a fair bit in hand, but on previous indications he'll be handicapped as if he won. SNOW'S RIDE has hit decent form and stayed on to finish second and be awarded the race. COLLEGE CITY ran an honest enough race.
4.20 2m 1f Beginners' Chase
An event won by the useful Ungaro last year. There didn't look to be anything as good in this renewal. MEDISON did jump nicely in front, won well and should be placed to win again. OR DE GRUGY ran respectably in second. SMART STREET tended to make the pace over hurdles, but didn't see the front here. He stayed on without being over-pressed by his jockey, giving the impression there's more to come over fences.
4.55 2m 0.5f Maiden Hurdle
JASS won the NH Flat race on this card last season, a race from which the second, third and fourth all progressed well. It's taken Jass a few goes over hurdles, but these were seen off well enough. Not sure the race is upto an awful lot though.
5.30 2m 0.5f 3yo NH Flat
This race was for older horses last year, but this was a very interesting event for juveniles. ISAAC NEWTON led into the straight but ran out of steam. THis was competitive and he'll find easier races. AUTUMN HARVEST went clear rather impressively. Following were MOON PHASE, SOUTHERNESS and DESERT VISION, all from decent yards and capable of winning.