Sunday, 27 June 2010

Hexham - Ladies' Day

HEXHAM – Sunday June 20th

Going – Good to Firm (Good in places)

A large attendance was in evidence as Hexham’s Ladies’ Day closed activities at High Yarridge until October.

3.30 2m 4 ½ f Class 4 Novices’ Chase

FLYING DOCTOR has been in rattling good form over hurdles and carried that forward to his chasing debut. Given that his hurdles wins have been over longer distances this win is all the more creditable. It’s worth noting that the second and third have fair performances in their recent record. Flying Doctor came clear after being ridden up the hill and looks likely to score again.
DIAVOLERIA was outpaced on the downhill run to three out but stayed on again from two out.
ALWAYS BOLD was under pressure and held by the top of the hill. He could well benefit from a step up in trip.
MISS SUNFLOWER moved into midfield down four out but couldn’t make any impact.
Wining pointer DOUGALL was never dangerous on his Rules debut, while another point winner FLAG HILL plugged on past a couple late on but was well beaten.
Poor performers SHORT STRAW and NAUGHTY DIESEL trailed in at the rear.
GUNNER SNOW jumped slowly and lost touch from the ninth, being pulled up before three out.

4.30 3m 1f 0-112 Handicap Chase

SIMPLY SMASHING won the four miler here in March. He then disappointed in softened ground at Perth before running below par off a slow pace last time. The pace was generous here and Simply Smashing was detached by the tenth. What he does do is keep staying on though and getting in touch up the hill he came away to win with a bit to spare. This ground suits him just right.
HARRY FLASHMAN ran a creditable race, taking the running up at the tenth and seeing off all bar the winner by the last.
VON GELEN disputed two out from which point he was held. He’s not the most reliable though a previous run good run at Towcester suggests he’s favoured by a stiff finish.
SYCHO FRED made progress to chase the leaders three out but could make no further impact. Not a bad run from ‘6lbs wrong’ but he’s not easy to win with.
EXECUTIVE’S HALL had a chance three out but was held form two out. He’s stoutly bred, got competitive for a way here and as a six-year-old has time on his side. He might just be worth keeping an eye on in his next few runs.
ESME RIDES A GAINE is unreliable and took little interest on this occasion, though picking off a few late on.
TOULOUSE EXPRESS needs to dictate and soon lost interest once it was clear he couldn’t get to the front. It’s doubtful he’d stay this distance anyway.
TEENANDO faded from the thirteenth and his good 2008/09 form is a distant memory.
LINDSEYFIELD LODGE lost his rider as the runners approached the tape.
CHERNIK had made progress to four out and had every chance when unseating three out. NILE MOON was another in with a chance, but made a pig’s ear of the same fence and was pulled up before the next having lost his action.
TULLY HILL led early and was still in touch when pulling up rapidly going up the hill for the final time. He was dismounted and since there was no report made on the BHA website I can’t confirm if he suffered injury. I hope that no news is good news.
THE GREEN HAT was outpaced going to four out, weakened and was pulled up before the last.
OUR JIM raced prominently early but lost his position before halfway and was pulled up before fence thirteen.

WEETFROMTHECHAFF won the opening two mile novice hurdle, but it looked a poor contest. MWALESHI was well touted but pulled too hard and may produce better if he learns to settle.
MAJESTIC MAYHEM’s win in the closing novices’ hurdle looks decent with a hurdles winner and a fair chaser in behind. He stayed on strongly and has more in the tank, with a move up to three miles likely to pay dividends.
CROSBY JEMMA was nudged out to win the 0-113 handicap hurdle, but she is likely to struggle when moved up the weights. CELTICELLO was second but is a weak finisher and the third DAYTIME DREAMER is no better than ordinary, though he may benefit from the outing after a break.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Dougie Fraser

The racing community have recently been mourning the death of Scottish commentator Doug Fraser. His body was discovered in the River Aire near to his Leeds home earlier this month, over a week after his failure to appear at a meeting at Hexham.

Fraser was well regarded within the racing community and tributes have been paid by many of his former colleagues within racing. A regular on the commentary circuit in the Scotland and the North of England, he was a familier voice to those of us in this area. Fraser provided accurate and informative commentary in his distinctive Scottish tones.

Sympathy goes out to Doug's family, friends and colleagues.

R.I.P. Dougie.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

June 12-14 Hexham and Sedgefield

HEXHAM – Saturday June 12th

Going – Good (Good to Soft in places)

3.05 2m ½f 0-114 Handicap Chase

ORMUS showed ability over hurdles but has struggled over fences. He showed that he still retains his ability when his jumping clicks and he stayed on well here after joining issue in the straight. He’s on a low mark compared with his hurdling best and there may be more in the locker.
STAGECOACH PEARL led two out and stayed on after being headed. This was a fair effort for his second over fences and this six-year-old looks likely to win handicap chases.
EMOTIVE plugged on late having struggled to match the leaders from halfway. This trip looks too sharp for him now.
WELL OILED was well held from two out and isn’t threatening to break his maiden tag.
HEAVENLY CHORUS often picks up late, but never got seriously involved on this occasion being outpaced form the bottom of the hill three out.
RED JESTER was ridden quite early on, rallied to four out but then dropped away.

4.10 2m 4½f 0-99 Handicap Chase

This wasn’t a brilliant race with many out of form.

Having looked very slow on his initial UK efforts TULLY HILL has at least shown a little zest in the last year, if lacking pace at the business end. Coming up against a bunch similarly lacking in finishing zip he had enough in hand to pick off his rivals on the flat, thus breaking his own and his trainer’s duck. His form at Hexham is well in advance of anything else he ahs shown.
HASPER has been running creditably in moderate handicaps and kept on for second, though never quite getting close enough to threaten a win.
GINGER’S LAD won at Sedgefield last time and looked to have a decent chance to follow up. He was thereabouts from a mile out but couldn’t raise his game enough in the straight.
THE GREEN HAT showed a good deal more than he had on his last outing, possibly finding handicap company easier. Having led at the ninth he had every chance approaching the last but could summon no extra.
DALLAS BELL was one paced from two out and looks held on current terms.
PANTHERS RUN won here in October but everything fell for him then and he’s generally not a betting proposition. He was struggling from the ninth fence here.
CLUELESS regressed, tailed off from the tenth, while MISCHIEF MAN fell away after belting the eighth and was pulled up, as was FLAMING HECK who took little interest.

BEAT THE SHOWER won the two mile handicap hurdle nicely off top weight and a mark of 107. He’s lightly raced and looks progressive.
FAIR SPIN won the 2m 4½f handicap hurdle with ease, beating three recent winners, and may be a step or two ahead of the handicapper.
NOBLE SCHOLAR upheld recent bumper form in the first leg of the NH Flat race. He battled well on the flat to beat AUPCHARLIE, making a promising debut and looking a future winner, with the remainder well held.
LOVEY DOVEY followed up a comfortable Perth win in the second heat and this point winner will be interesting once going hurdling. BE MY DEPUTY looks to have strengthened after a fifteen month break, staying on determinedly from the bottom of the hill and is one to keep an eye on.

SEDGEFIELD – Monday June 14th

Going – Good

The last fence was omitted as ‘ground under repair’ giving a very long run-in from the usual second last, the open ditch.

4.00 2m 4f 0-112 Handicap Chase

SOUBRIQUET bounced back to form having shown little of note in recent months. He raced prominently and stayed on to hold an in-form second.
GENERAL HARDI is in the groove right now and was closing on the winner at the line, well clear of the remainder. This was a very creditable effort given that he was dropping back in trip by a mile.
NILE MOON didn’t look comfortable for much of the way but plugged on from two out before running out of puff on the long run-in. He’s not bad on his day but does need things to fall his way.
BROADWAY STAR stayed on from the second last, looked likely to take third but weakened close home. This run offered just a glimmer of encouragement compared to his previous chasing efforts.
INDIANA GOLD took the lead four out and seemed to be going quite well, but he gave way tow out and weakened. He won in France last year and might have a chance of landing a race in time.
TOULOUSE EXPRESS has two ways of running and felt the pinch from four out.
BACK TO THE WIND was too keen early, weakened three out and was pulled up before the last.
KARELIAN jumped slowly, soon lost touch and was pulled up before the ninth.

4.30 2m ½ f 0-96 Handicap Chase

RUBY ISABEL followed up her Towcester win, staying on well form the last and rewarding Tim Vaughan who is never afraid to travel in search of opportunities.
TROODOS JET was a little disappointing at Cartmel but bounced back to form here, finding a progressive one too good. He’s normally in the mix in this company.
KING’S MAJESTY plugged on for third without threatening.
SCHINKEN OTTO was ridden four out and held from two out. Conditions were right here, but he needs a race where he can dictate terms.
Maiden jumper SKIDDAW JONES was held from three out, as was CROFTON ARCH who seemed a good deal happier round the quirky Cartmel circuit.
ANOTHER DARK RUM has regressed after showing some promise, finishing tailed off, and STAR TENOR was always in the rear.

MEETINGS MAN saw off LUCKY QUAY in the juvenile hurdle though his jumping was rather hairy once in front. The impression is that a fluent hurdler could see off both of these. The hurdle form looks below average at this meeting and there wasn’t much I would take forward.

Saturday, 12 June 2010

Derby Day at Musselburgh and Hexham - Concerns for Dougie Fraser

Saturday June 5th

An excellent Derby Day’s racing at two northern tracks has been cast into the background somewhat. Course commentator Dougie Fraser failed to turn up at Hexham and there has been no trace of him since then, despite searches of the area around his flat in Leeds. While we all hope that Dougie is alive and well, if hiding away for some reason, the time that has elapsed since he was last seen suggest something more sinister. I’m sure all readers join me in hoping that the story has a happy ending.


Going – Good (Good to Firm in places)

A large crowd turned up for a well endowed card at the East Lothian venue in glorious sunny weather.

2.05 5f 0-81 Handicap

LOST IN PARIS, generally progressive if setting aside a last run where she went off too quick, won the opening sprint very nicely. Having disputed all the way she asserted from the furlong pole and looks suited by the sharp five furlongs here.
INGLEBY STAR, back to form after a couple of disappointing efforts, ran on for second and RIDLEY DIDLEY continued in decent form if held in the final furlong.

2.35 5f Class 2 Stakes

This looked a strong contest and the first two seem Ascot candidates. EXCEL BOLT rallied near to the line to get back up having been headed by COCKTAIL CHARLIE. The time was a shade quicker than that of the first race, and allowing for weight-for-age a rating of 100+ would be reasonable for both the first two. That puts them well into Pattern class. FIFTH AVENUE was back in third and this filly is worth noting for future runs, though she’s more exposed than the first two.

3.10 1m 4f 100yds 0-104 3yo Handicap for the ‘Edinburgh Cup’

The main event, run in a course record time, looked to throw up another Royal Ascot prospect in HARRIS TWEED. He led, was driven out to pull clear for what was eventually a comfortable win and is coming along in leaps and bounds.
SING SWEETLY stayed on for second and is that the right end of the handicap. Given that this race was full of progressive types then a second place is of great merit and it will only be a matter of time before she picks up a race, perhaps suited by a stiffer track or slightly further.
CORSICA was up with the leaders all the way but off top weight, 16lbs clear of the next best, couldn’t respond sufficiently in the final two furlongs. I did wonder after his Hamilton effort whether he might go for the Queen’s Vase, a target for staying types who are in the ‘twilight zone’ in handicaps.
Behind those, OPERA GAL was always thereabouts but tapped for pace in the final two furlongs. She will finds easier opportunities, as will BOWDLER’S MAGIC and ROCK A DOODLE DOO, both putting in good work toward the end.
3.40 5f 0-99 Handicap

HAMISH MCGONAGALL has been in the mix in all his races this season. He was quickly prominent from a wide draw and led enough in hand to run on for victory in the final furlong. Given his draw position I suspect this form may be a few pounds better than it first appears.
Dandy Nicholls is never far away in these events and his STRIKING SPIRIT ran on to take a close second.
INGLEBY LADY stuck on for third, a good effort over what would be a sharp five furlongs for her. She looks well capable of recording another win stepped back up to six furlongs.
MASAMAH showed a lot of early speed, but had to give way approaching the final furlong. That being said, he did stick on for fourth place which in itself was a decent effort.
VALERY BORZOV was left flat-footed at the start, which was curtains in this sort of event, but he put in some good work late on. Better at six furlongs, he’s worth keeping on the right side when stepped back up in trip.

4.15 1m 1f Class 4 Selling Stakes

FREMEN made it six wins from six for the season with a typically determined effort in the seller. Judged on ratings he had it to do again nominally better opponents, but ultimately it was willingness that counted and he kept responding up the straight.
MOUNT HADLEY found the winner had more resolution, while the third KING’S POINT probably performed best of the beaten horses given that he was lowest rated.
LANG SHING is better than this level though doesn’t look particularly inclined to show it and was a disappointing fifth.

4.50 1m 4f 100yds 0-80 Handicap

JUST LILLE bounced back to form here in a first time visor, staying on under pressure. Time constraints meant I have been unable to write my reports as soon as I’d like, and so she followed up in the Lanark Bell at Hamilton before I could get this piece on line.
ANTIGUA SUNRISE could make no impression from two out though performed soundly, while ANNIBALE CARO made progress up the straight to finish third but is essentially frustrating.

5.25 7f 30yds 0-78 3yo Handicap

JEANNIE GALLOWAY raced prominently and showed determination to hold on once hitting the front in the final furlong.
ENGULF was well backed following a second in a Newbury maiden. He was going best two furlongs out but didn’t respond as expected, though he still looked a bit green to me and there may well be better to come in time. He kept on well enough close home.
AMENABLE led until headed at the furlong pole and couldn’t raise his game from there.

HEXHAM – Saturday June 5th

Going – Good to Firm

In the absence of Dougie Fraser the AtTheRaces ‘commentary’ was provided by Matt Chapman. Your correspondent decided he would be better served by turning down the sound!

2.15 2m 4½f Class 4 Novices’ Hurdle

MAJESTIC MAYHEM was a 24,000 Euros buy after winning a couple of Irish points and a Wexford bumper. He doesn’t look a bad purchase on this evidence, coming well clear in the straight. A follow up win looks highly likely.
SIR FRANK had every chance but used up his energy climbing the hill after which he weakened to finish a tired second. This was different to the tight Cartmel circuit and his stamina limit was broken here.
BIRNIES BOY finished a moderate third and the rest were well beaten.

2.45 2m 4½f Class 4 Novices’ Chase

BAILY STORM seemed to have a straight forward opportunity here but was made to work very hard by a second performing to his best. That being said, he showed determination to hold on.
SIERRA VICTOR has clearly had problems, but returned to his best to push the winner all the way. He would win a handicap in this form, but doesn’t always produce two similar efforts in a row.
MISS SUNFLOWER, a pointing winner making her Rules debut, ran well until giving way from the last.
THE GREEN HAT was left behind down the far side and needs further to show the little ability he has.
ELLANDSHE lost touch after three out but plugged on to the finish in his own time.

3.20 3m 1f 0-115 Handicap Chase

HARRY FLASHMAN isn’t the most reliable jumper, but he got his act together here. Up with the pace as suits him, he responded to urging approaching the last and ran on for victory.
TOT OF THE KNAR was going well three out but the winner had too much for her in the straight.
WESTERN GALE was held form two out while CASH ON FRIDAY weakened on the run to the last.
PANAMA AT ONCE jumped sketchily and lost touch from the thirteenth and pulled up before four out.
GUERILLA took on interest and was pulled up before the tenth.

3.50 2m ½f 0-141 Handicap Hurdle

The best quality hurdle of Hexham’s season was won in impressive style by INVENTOR. He led before the last, made a good leap and came clear on the flat.
SANTA’S SON has made a move to Charles Pogson, an unheralded trainer but one of my favourites. Ridden by Pogson’s son Adam, Santa’s Son put up a decent effort here, staying on under pressure for second. The stable get a decent return from a bunch of mainly moderate animals and it wouldn’t surprise me if they coax a handicap hurdle out of this one.
AKARSHAN plugged on for third, holding DANISH REBEL, who is swapping between flat and hurdles, and LOS NADIS who looks held off a mark of 126.

4.25 2m 4½f Hunters’ Chase

There were problems with the ATR feed for this race so I’m working off the race comments for this last hunter chase of the spring.
ARDNACLANCY followed up his Cartmel win by taking the notable scalp of Take The Stand. Having been outpaced two out he rallied up the hill, led at the last and was pushed out. A prolific winning pointer he has time on his side to pick up more wins under Rules.
TAKE THE STAND was dropped in trip following his decent third at Stratford. The trip doesn’t play to his strengths and he was tapped for pace by the in form winner. He does retain his enthusiasm and I wouldn’t discount a return next year at the age of 15.
PEN GWEN has run some fair races in hunter company and kept on to take third.
THINK LUCKY plugged on for fourth, well held, and isn’t one to rely on.
RAKERIN LAD was outpaced form four out beating home SCOTCH WARRIOR, who was in the lead three out to two out but then weakened up the hill, and VICTOR who weakened approaching two out.
BOW SCHOOL is plenty capable but his jumping can be sloppy at times. Having belted the second he decanted his rider when hitting the eighth.
PIRATE D’ESTRUVAL isn’t up to this level and was well behind when unseating four out.
SENDEED weakened three out and was pulled up, while BENWELL was tailed off on the final circuit, his jockey calling it a day before the last.

4.55 2m ½f Class 4 3yo Hurdle

The opening juvenile hurdle of the season was won by David Pipe with LUCKY QUAY. He will presumably compete as similar events come along and won well enough.
SANSILI was a one paced second just ahead of ANCHORAGE BAY and MR MOHICAN. I wouldn’t be falling over myself to back any of those three in the immediate future.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

CARTMEL – Spring Bank Holiday Meetings

Saturday May 29th

Going –Good

The weather was disappointing for the first of three days’ racing at Cartmel and a good few of the crowd were on their way home before the end of the evening.

The opening hurdle saw Donald McCain’s mare IDENTITY PARADE make it two from two over hurdles, hanging on gamely from STAND CLEAR. The latter was clear of the remainder and Ferdy Murphy should find a minor event for him.

In the seller DUNASKIN looked to be struggling on the home bend but, as previously, he rattled up the run-in to wrest the contest close home. In the end it was a comfortable win and his turn of speed does make a significant difference at this lowly level. LETS GO GIRLS isn’t the most consistent performer but ran well enough to take second, just ahead of DANNY ZUKO who was dropped in grade after a disappointing return to hurdles last time. WOODY VALENTINE stayed on from a way back to take fourth but is not hitting his best at the moment.

7.00 2m 5½f 0-100 Handicap Chase

SHULMIN has been hinting at a return to form of late. All her previous wins had come at Sedgefield it seems that a sharp track is the basic requirement for producing her best. Able to settle comfortably she took up the running at the last and was kept up
to her work to win. She was 8lbs wrong here, but at her best that mark is very generous and she built on this performance just two days later.
EMOTIVE has been running creditably over fences and kept on for second if unable to get to the winner. He’s doing enough to suggest that his trainer can find a handicap chase for him.
CROFTON ARCH ran as good a race as he has done for a while. He kept on at one pace for third, but this was a decent effort from 10lbs wrong in the weights and he was another to build on the performance later in the meeting.
SYCHO FRED couldn’t match the principals from three out. He probably needs a stiffer test but his jumping is a bit sloppy.
STORM SURGE was prominent most for the way but found wanting on the long run from the last. His best has come around two miles and a drop back in trip would suit.
PEAK SEASONS is moderate and is found out in anything like a competitive race. He ran prominently but struggled from the last.
CORPORATION, placed in weak novice hurdles last year, has been disappointing of late and dropped away from the eleventh.
WINGED FARASI was never going and was tailed off when falling at the last.

7.30 3m 2f 0-95 Handicap Chase

A multiple point winner in Ireland and a respectable sixth over the cross-country course at Punchestown, VOLCANIC ROCK proved well up to the quirky test that is a Cartmel staying chase. He made steady progress from halfway and was nudged clear after the last. He seemed to have a fair bit in hand and it wouldn’t surprise me if his trainer searches for further opportunities this side of the Irish Sea.
ONTHEGOAGAIN, a second Irish challenger and a winner at Hexham in October, ran a sound race if outpointed from the final bend.
THE ARTFUL FOX has limited ability but kept on to take third place.
GERSHWINNER weakened before the last and is proving very disappointing as is BATHWICK BREEZE who raced prominently but gave way tamely from the last.
COPPER’S GOLD has picked up a couple of soft events but having led from the start gave way two out and weakened. I still think he can win off his current mark if able to get a soft lead in a moderate contest so don’t write him off.
SIERRA PEAK and SAM CRUISE have both seriously lost their way of late and were well beaten. The latter doesn’t help himself with some appalling jumping0.
DUNBRODY HOUSE jumped badly in rear and was pulled up.
BENNY THE PILER once again went out like a light and seems to have a problem.

8.10 2m 1 ½ f Class 4 Novices’ Chase

The favourite MUTUAL FRIEND needed a decent pace here but the four opposition jockeys were not of a mind to oblige. He rallied close home but couldn’t find enough to take the race and is a sort who needs things to fall for him.
THUMBS UP was the obvious second choice and made a sound chasing debut, leading after the final turn and having enough in hand to hold on.
WATCH OUT had every chance but was outpointed in the final furlong, SPRINGFIELD RAKI was outpointed form three out and JAMES CAIRD, formerly useful on the flat but off the track after a disappointing spell hurdling, was beaten two out.

SIR FRANK ran on gamely to take the 2m 1½f novices’ hurdle. He’ll be competitive in similar events over the summer. DUTY FREE is consistent if regularly finding one too good and ran on well for second. BEAT THE SHOWER stayed on for third and might be worth a glance in a moderate event at a stiffer track.

ARDESIA continued her improvement to take the closing handicap hurdle. Locally trained DEVILS DELIGHT is consistent enough in this sort of company and kept on for second. ROYAL FLYNN was a well held third and isn’t particularly close to that elusive victory. KNIGHT VALLIANT is running a little better now after some dire runs in the winter, but was held in fourth.

Monday May 31st

Going – Good

Glorious Bank Holiday weather brought out the usual huge crowd at this delightful Lakeland venue. This is the ultimate Country Fair meeting.

A mares’ novices’ selling hurdle is about as low quality as jump racing gets. DREAM RISK built on a degree of jumping promise, and a couple of respectable flat runs, to come clear in the straight. STIR ON THE SEA raced keenly for much of the way but was outpaced in the street, though finishing in front of Stratford winner BONZENO QUEEN. The rest will struggle to win anything over obstacles.

Progressive BEIDH TINE ANSEO hosed up with ears pricked in the four-year-old hurdle and looks likely to have his sights set a good deal higher before long. He was decent on the flat with Jim Bolger and is starting to show that ability over hurdles. ANDHAAR made a promising debut in second and will be unlucky to run into another one as good as the winner on the summer circuit. Back in third CLASSIC CONTOURS sets the level having twice been a runner-up previously.

3.20 3m 6f 0-104 Handicap Chase

SHULMIN made it two wins in three days with a very easy win, the trip here being a bit more suitable than the one she won at on Saturday.
PAUILLAC stayed on under pressure form the last without threatening the winner. This quirky course seemed to suit him as his form of late has been moderate.
BACK IN BUSINESS plugged on for third, LAVENOAK LAD was one paced after the last and arguably needs a track or conditions that place a greater demand on his stamina.
HEVER ROAD has been in good form in the spring, but he’s basically just a plodder and could only keep on from the rear, the turning track possibly not playing to his strengths.
FINBIN found this event tougher than what turned into a match at Sedgefield and was never dangerous.
STOP THE SHOW was up with the pace for much of the way but was quickly cast aside in the last three-quarters of a mile.
ESME RIDES A GAINE raced with the pace until losing here place four out, quickly back pedalling.
FEELING PECKISH made his losing run 72 and finished tailed off.
GERSHWINNER didn’t see out the trip, but he was beaten at the three mile mark anyway and is very weak in the latter stages of his races.
SADDLER’S WAY struggled from halfway and was pulled up two out.

3.55 2m 5 ½ f Class 4 Beginners’ Chase

SIMARIAN seems to have had his interest rekindled by going chasing. He followed up a promising second on debut with a determined effort to win this race, leading to two out and rallying on the flat.
LAST FLIGHT battled well enough having taken the initiative from Simarian but was just held. Peter Bowen isn’t frightened to put in the horsebox miles and should find an opportunity for her.
INDIAN PIPE DREAM stayed on under pressure in third.
HEARTHSTEAD DREAM did well to stay in contention for a long way given that his jumping was slow at times. He faded after one mistake too many three out.
BALLYCOLIN is likely to need more of a stamina test and lost touch from the last while YOUNG YOZZA cut no ice on chasing debut, struggling from early on.

4.30 2m 5 ½ f Hunters’ Chase

Prolific winning pointer ARDNACLANCY broke his Rules duck with a determined effort, seeing off pacemaker WHAT OF IT in the straight.
LAGOSTA kept on for third, FATHER MURTAGH was held after the last and finished fourth.
CLUTHE BOY has won points but is finding hunter company a lot tougher, while THE STCKLER raced close up until giving best from two out.
ATHOSS has shown promise of late but was disappointing on this occasion, fading from four out.
WILFIE WILD, a fourteen year old returning to senior racing after three years, went well enough until weakening quickly after the last.
BARRY THE CRACKER was held up in last place and stayed there, becoming tailed off down the wood-side on the final circuit.

Back to the closing hurdles contests and PADDINGTON BOB took the two and three-quarter mile novices’ handicap, just holding GALLEY SLAVE who didn’t do much wrong but is rated a lowly 68. LUKEY LUKE, previously beaten in a seller, was close up for third and the rest were put in their place.
The closing Conditional Jockeys’ staying event was won by FLYING DOCTOR who continues in very good form. GLEN ROUGE is basically a plodder but has run some fair races of late. The rest were well held though MONEY FINDER went well until giving way in the last quarter mile and she may benefit from a stiffer track.

Wednesday June 2nd

Going – Good (Good To Soft in places, Soft on the wood side)

Just a bit of cut in the ground for the closing day of Cartmel’s Spring Festival and that may have made a difference to a few.

TWENTYNINEBLACK made it two in a row in the opening novices’ hurdle seeing off SILVERLORD. Gordon Elliott should place the latter to win before long, though it’s worth noting this one will probably need a sharp two miles to bring out the best. 113 rated QUATRO PIERJI ran a fair enough race in third and sets the level.
BASFORD LASS won a weakly contested mares’ maiden from SAINTLY LADY with the well exposed MAOLISA third having been prominent all the way.

3.25 2m 1½f 0-94 Handicap Chase

CROFTON ARCH produced his best run for a good while, leading and sticking on well up the straight. He seems in good heart at the moment and enjoyed bowling along in front round this tight circuit.
BOLD PIONEER looked to be going best on the flat but couldn’t find enough once asked. I suspect it says a lot for Graham Lee’s talents that this one made second place.
TURBO SHANDY is a course and distance winner but couldn’t make any impression from the final bend while STAR TENOR couldn’t summon pace to challenge form the last.
TROODOS JET had every chance but couldn’t raise his game from the last despite urgings from above.
SCHINKEN OTTO found this tougher than his Sedgefield contest and faded from the last.
FLAMING HECK was tailed off whilst ICE IMAGE went well for a way but weakened disappointingly down the wood side. Those two beat GLENGAP who lost touch four out and shows little promise at this time.

3.55 3m 6f 0-115 Handicap Chase

A disappointing turn out for an event dominated by Chabrimal Minster in recent years.
LYDON HOUSE stays well but doesn’t win very often. He just kept galloping here and had the race in safe keeping from the last.
MR ED contested until the last but just plugged on and his overall form pattern is discouraging.
MASTER SEBASTIAN plodded on for third but was never close enough to threaten.
LITTLE GIRL ran a decent race from 23lbs out of the weights, running prominently for much of the way and keeping going well enough to hold fourth. She shows a glimmer of ability, but time and a desperately low rating are against her.
SPORING REBEL was out of contention with a mile to go and walked in for fifth.
MICHIGAN D’ISOP never got into the contest and was pulled up three out, whilst VICTORY GUNNER pulled up having raced prominently to the tenth.

4.30 3m 2f Hunters’ Chase

THUNDER HAWK recovered his form and showed a good attitude to rally and lead near the line against an idling second.
DELIGHTFUL CLICHÉ should have won but decided that he had done enough a furlong out having cruised into the lead three out.
DOC ROW ran creditably in third back in a more realistic class. He couldn’t summon an extra effort once turned for home.
THISTLECRAFT was held form three out whilst AREYACODDINMEE never got involved and was tailed off from two out.
FAIR QUESTION was rallying and looked likely to be involved in the finish when thumping the fourteenth and shooting his rider out of the plate.
OPTIMISTIC HARRY gave Samantha Drake a nasty unseat at the first whilst OAKLANDS LUIS and PROUD ANDEES struggled on th final circuit and were pulled up.

SUMMER SOUL continued his good form in the 2m 6f handicap hurdle, scoring for Lucinda Russell’s yard. Flight before the straight was omitted on the second last circuit and Campbell Gillies shaped as if expecting to miss it when it was the last. The damaged flight had been repaired and Gillies corrected himself sufficiently, gathering his mount to quicken clear quite impressively. This one might have another race in him as he is in fine heart and form here looks solid.
DOWNING STREET stayed on from a long way back for second overtaking CASH MAN who tried to match the winner but weakened after the last. These two are decent measures at this level and another in-form performer was fourth in SPARE ME.
The closing contest of the meeting saw ARDESIA add to Saturday’s win. Like Shulmin earlier this one came out of his first race in good nick and put up another decent performance. Solid form credentials were at a premium here though, previously well held GOLDEN FUTURE staying on for second with course specialist WENSLEYDALE WEB benefitting from a return to her favourite venue, though never threatening in third place.