Going – Good To Soft (Hurdles), Good, Good To Soft in places (Chases)
With high pressure continuing to dominate, the going dried out significantly at Carlisle. However, the hurdle away from the stands was omitted and the ground in that area cut up a good deal more than elsewhere. The problem will be alleviated once the new hurdles course is in action next year, and in addition that will save the flat track from punishment during the winter. I wonder if Carlisle will apply for extra flat fixtures next year?
2.10 3m 1f Class 4 Novices’ Hurdle
The pace didn’t pick up until the second circuit, but even then it was enough to see off most in this field.
WHATS UP WOODY is an out and out stayer who will presumably be seen to even better effect over fences in time. He was thereabouts all the way and stayed on better than the doubly penalised second from the last hurdle.
EDGE OF TOWN is another who looks a long term chasing prospect. He was not disgraced under a double penalty if just held on the run to the line.
BEL HUGO was outpaced going to the eighth but stayed on again up the hill and put in a respectable effort in third.
OIL BURNER was held from a mile out upped significantly in distance after lay-off.
2.40 2m 4f Class 4 Novices’ Hurdle
TARA ROYAL benefitted from taking on slightly easier opposition and was able to add to his Sedgefield success, seeing out the half mile extra in decent style.
COASTLEY’s last race was a novice hunter chase win at Perth, but a long lay-off and a hurdling debut didn’t seem to inconvenience him unduly. He led at the sixth and kept for second after being headed. This was a good effort and he may find a novice hurdle.
GRAND ZOUKI stayed on for third and POINT WEST ran respectably in fourth on his hurdling debut, if outpaced up the hill, and should learn from this.
3.15 2m 4f Class 4 Beginners’ Chase
MIDDLETON DENE has learnt from experience and proved too good for mainly moderate opposition here. His jumping looks more assured now and he asserted on the run to the last, staying on well on the flat. There may be better to come now.
MR WOODS can be a bit hit or miss, and his jumping went to pot last time, but he was more confident here and nay schooling he may have done seems to have worked. He led until before the last, kept on once passed and looks capable of winning a similar event if his jumping holds.
MORE EQUITY ran to form in third given that she’s 15lb and 14lb pounds respectively worse than the first two. She was still in the hunt when hitting three out after which it was a losing battle. There should be easier contests for her.
ISLA PEARL FISHER performed slightly better than at Kelso. His jumping was awkward early on but improved as the race progressed though he couldn’t make an impression on the leaders from three out. He’s rated 82, so low grade handicaps will be his best target.
POLITICAL PADDY, making his chase debut, was never going well enough and back pedalled after hitting four out. Rayson Nixon’s stable was buzzing last season but hasn’t had a winner since this one was victorious at Kelso last April.
MARLBOROUGH SOUND was last seen when winning a selling hurdle at Towcester in November 2008. He lost touch by the tenth on his chasing debut and finished tailed off.
OH YAH DANCER fell five out, but was never in the contest anyway.
CALIN ROYAL was pulled up and quickly dismounted before the eighth, being reported as lame.
3.45 3m 2f 0-110 Handicap Chase
MATMATA DE TENDRON is a bit of a cuss, normally best at Sedgefield, and suited by the mud. He has run some fair races at Carlisle though, was clearly on good terms with himself and led at the last to win here. He’s dropped a long way in the handicap but backing him next time would involve a leap of faith.
CHERNIK led or disputed most of the way, and looked the likely winner two out, only for the enigmatic ‘grey in the sideburns’ to pass him in the final half furlong. He’s run well this time of year in both 2008 and 2009, and there might be a chance to strike while the iron is hot.
OCARINA made progress to three out and briefly threatened before weakening on the run to the last. He’s running consistently without threatening a win.
This looked TREEHOUSE’s sort of contest, and he made an effort approaching three out, but made no impression from that point and might ideally need softer ground. He did win on fast ground last spring, but that was a desperate contest.
GERSHWINNER was held from three out.
SHULMIN led from five out until three out but weakened soon after.
MASTER SEBASTIAN was beaten a long way out and doesn’t look the horse he once was.
TOP DRESSING probably found this too stiff a test and he was beaten from six furlongs out.
MONEYLAWS was always behind and though closing for a time mid-race soon lost touch again.
COLDWELLS wan no sort of race and was pulled up approaching the fourteenth.
DARINA’S BOY was beaten when unseating three out and looks a back number now for whom retirement beckons.
STAGECOACH DIAMOND fell at the fourth.
4.20 2m 4f 0-110 C.J. Handicap Hurdle
Overall it is difficult to pick up many positives from this ordinary contest.
MISTER MARKER put a disappointing effort at Ayr behind him to land this race, though with second and third well exposed and moderate it’s questionable how good the form is.
SOLWAY ALLY and YOUNG BUDDY improved on recent efforts, while VECCHIO SENSO failed to progress from his easy win at Wetherby.
4.50 2m 0-99 Handicap Chase
BENE LAD confirmed the promise of his Kelso effort, a significant drop in trip being no hindrance. Having raced up with the pace he looked as if he maybe held as they approached the last, but he rallied to great effect and got up on the line. The second and third’s recent efforts suggest the form may be sound and Bene Lad has prospects of going in again.
SHELOMOH looked the winner until mugged in the shadow of the post. This was a good effort given that his previous best was in soft or heavy. A repeat should put him close again and I’d be extra confident with some rain.
STORM SURGE ran a sound race in third though held after the last. He might find a softer event at this level.
PANTHERS RUN stayed no from two out without ever getting involved. This is his way of running and his only win came when he got lucky in catching an idling Fred Bojangals at Hexham.
MORE LIKE IT weakened three out.
NAVAL ATTACHE came second in a dire contest at Sedgefield, but was well held against better opposition here.
BULLIES ACRE disputed the lead until weakening from two out. He regularly runs out of reserves come the latter stages.
MORE SHENNANIGANS was unlucky at Southwell, carried out by as loose horse when leading and going well, but was never happy here and always looked booked for last place.
7.20 2m 1f NH Flat
SEREN ROUGE stayed on well to hold off a previous winner in EASTERN SUPREME. The pair were closely followed by the newcomer EBONY RIVER who looks bred to make a jumper.
The form looks sound enough as the rest were strung out like washing, BOW BADGER running passably well in fourth.