KELSO – Sunday May 24th
Going – Good (Good to Firm in places)
A bright day for Ladies Day to finish the Kelso spring campaign, with a chilly stiff breeze blowing across the track with the going a tad on the fast side. Decent ground nevertheless though the bends had to sanded early on as they were just a little slippery.
Milnathort Racing Club’s The Village pitched up seeking to atone for misbehaviour at Perth when refusing to start.
2.10 2m ½f Lyntoun Taxis & Andersons Butchers East Lothian Novices’ Hurdle (Class 4)
He made little impact at Perth but RUNNING BROOK was presented looking a picture on this occasion and belied odds of 40/1. He raced handily, challenged two out and wore down the leader on the flat. A pleasing effort and this point winner should be capable of holding his own over the bigger obstacles.
ANGUS GLENS set the standard racing under a penalty and looked the likely winner approaching the last. He pecked and lost the initiative though keeping on to the line. There should be another event for him under a penalty before long.
ANOTHER BYGONES didn’t quite get to the front two but kept on for third place.
SO SATISFIED ran a satisfactory race, keeping on nicely to the line without being over punished. He has ability and chances will likely come once he has a handicap mark.
NABURN was left in the lead three out but held from two out. He would need a soft non-handicap but is another likely to show up well enough once handicapped.
SKY FULL OF STARS looks to need a bit of time. He was outpaced from two out.
VITAL EVIDENCE led until falling three out. He has ability but would be one of the lesser lights in the McCain set up.
PARKIE BOY is chasing type who will need time. He was well behind when unseating two out but should leave this from behind in time.
2.40 2m 7½f Elliot Henderson Novices’ Handicap Chase (79-105)
JACK ALBERT is a keen going front runner and was always in the lead or near it. He pushed on from four out and was clear two out. What you see is what you get with this one.
VISION DE LA VIE stayed on for second without threatening the winner. He has three years in hand on the winner and looks well capable of winning a chase or two.
KING OF THE DARK carried a bit of condition, but he ran recently so presumably it’s just how he looks. He challenged three out but was held from two out, just being denied second place. He’s unexposed and confirmed promise of his Sedgefield run.
EMKAE, a bit grinder who must wear his teeth down, was outpaced three out and then kept on again up the hill. A more forward from previous chasing efforts.
ACCORDINGSCRIPT led or disputed until falling away from four out. His jumping was not as flunet as that of the winner and it told in the last mile.
JUST AWAKE is capable at this level but has a tendency to miss out a fence or two. Ridden patiently, he looked to be going best of all when coming down four out.
3.10 2m 7½f Elliot Henderson Novices’ Handicap Chase (75-101)
This race was run over two seconds a mile quicker than part one as it showed with only two horses in contention two.
LEANNA BAN was considered gifted the race at Carlisle, but proved he’s at least that good and better. Front running, he burnt off all the bar the second turning for home and went clear after his challenger hit two out. He was impressive, looks better than this class and his trainer will presumably try to strike while the iron is hot.
BROTHER SCOTT got close to the leader two out having travelled well, but he hit the fence and his chance was lost. He beat the rest a long way and will not always run into one as sharp as the winner at this level.
TRIBAL DANCE was outpaced a mile out and eventually kept on past beaten rivals to take third. He tried to take on the winner early on and may have paid for that.
LOCHORE raced in rear and struggled from halfway.
COOLANURE was well outpaced going on to the final circuit and his trainer reported he had sulked.
WHERE’S MALACHY was outpaced from four out and has yet to make a significant mark.
BLAST MARTHA ran well for a long way and looked destined for third before being pulled up and dismounted before two out. If there are no serious problems she hinted at enough ability to get in the mix in similar contests.
DISCOVERIE was not on a going day, always in rear and pulled up before two out.
3.45 2m 1f KOSB Novices’ Handicap Chase (79-105)
The big event of the afternoon as far as some of us were concerned, but we managed to collect another last place, though not without some encouragement. A close contest with all in contention at the last.
BEIDH TINE ANSEO is a bit better than this level if he puts his best hoof forward. He was tapped for speed at the top end of the course, but stayed on well from two out to lead on the flat and on top close home. A nice performance which gave some in the Russell box cause to celebrate and he might score again while in good heart.
GREAT DEMEANOUR, a faller when looking destined for third of 4 at Perth, apparently improved on previous efforts. He had every chance and saw out his race well enough.
CLONLENEY race keenly, keeping on after being slightly caught for toe from two out. This run at least offered connections some encouragement on chasing debut.
SCORPIONS STING, a winner over hurdles last time, didn’t jump fluently and paid for that at the sharp end.
MWANGAZA led to two out and then faded on the run-in. She may be suited by more cut.
NO SUCH NUMBER raced close up but couldn’t raise his game from two out.
Finally to Milnathort Racing Club pride and joy THE VILLAGE who was just pipped for sixth place on the line and thus finished last…, again! With tongue-tie removed he was much better behaved that at Perth and jumped off nicely. He was too keen early on, and needs to learn to settle, but put in some decent jumps. Unfortunately he made mistakes four out and three out and was hanging right and difficult to steer around the final bend. He made up a fair bit of ground to the last and was in a line for third, but then either the petrol or resolve ran out and he was running on the spot going for the line.
Peter Buchanan report was fairly upbeat, that our gelding needs a right-handed track but the quick ground suits him. There are only two convenient right-handed tracks on the go in the summer, Market Rasen and Perth and he’s most likely to appear at the latter.
The jury are out, and possibly tending towards a ‘guilty’ verdict, but it’s no done deal and there might just be a competent chaser in there.
4.20 2m 2f Coppola Family Novices’ Handicap Hurdle (103-119)
Only six runners but a tight little contest won in taking fashion by MAKE IT HAPPEN. He made a bad mistake four out which set him back a bit. He had to work after that but stayed on well to win cosily. The ground here suited and he could be one to take forward for the summer campaign.
APACHEE PRINCE went on and looked the likely winner two out and kicked on but was worn down close home.
UN ANJOU wasn’t disgraced on his return to hurdling, holding a chance going to the last but then held.
CRINKLE CRAGS went up 11lbs for a Sedgefield win and hasn’t matched that form since. The Co. Durham course can throw up some specialist and it’s worth bearing in mind it was softer that day. He’s looked a long term project though and chasing will probably be his game.
SILVER SHUFFLE was put in his place before two out.
NINEPOINTSIXTHREE jinked an unseated his rider some way after the second flight.
4.55 3m 2f Royal Scots Dragoon Guards Challenge Cup Hunters’ Chase (Class 4)
Winner of the Heart Of All England chase at Hexham, CAVE HUNTER added some notable scalps in a better event here. He raced in the lead or disputing most of the way and showed determination to rally and lead before the last. He hung left no the run-in, crossing his pursuer, but had the race won, though his jockey got 3 days off.
NOWURHURLIN is a consistent sort who unseated in the Aintree Foxhunters’. This trip stretches his stamina and he was held when switched run-in, his jockey spotting the opportunity and making a bit of a play. A sound effort.
YOUNG HURRICANE was behind for much of the way but stayed no well from three out to take third place.
KALASTAR was soon off the pace and never got into the contests but inherited fourth palce.
CHANCEOFALIFETIME is another whose stamina is stretched at this tri0p. He was weakening when taking a heavy fall two out.
DANNANCEYS HILL was getting outpaced when coming down four out.
ROCKITEER led to the thirteenth but dropped away once headed and dropped away before being pulled up.
BEGGAR’S VELVET was never seriously in the contest and pulled up before two out.
5.25 3m 2f Border Facilities Handicap Chase (101-125) – Patricia Crawford Memorial Trophy
BALLYBEN was progressive last year and picked up the thread after some disappointments. He raced prominently, led two out and forged clear to win with a bit in hand. He’s headed in the right direction again.
BUDDY LOVE made an effort two out but never got to the winner. This was a decent effort in the class and he can find a race if kept going into the summer.
BEEVES led for a long way before being held from two out and ran to his form.
LORD BRENDY kept on in the latter stages without threatening the lead.
FULL JACK raced prominently but faded from the home bend.
PURCELL’S BRIDGE didn’t get in a blow from three out. He has some decent form on right-handed tracks and might do better at Perth.
GENEROUS CHIEF wasn’t’ a factor, the novice MO ROUGE jumped slowly and deliberately which didn’t help in senior company and moody ACTION MASTER didn’t show much zest.
5.55 2m ½f Jane Sturrock 40th Birthday Standard Open National Hunt Flat Race (Class 5)
Karen Mclintock hasn’t had the flow of bumper horses of late that she has in the past. However, she has found a decent animal in BANKS O’ HOUXTY who came clear in impressive style from two furlongs out.
SHOW ON THE ROAD was rather green, but he stayed on well enough for second. He’s a four-year-old who should develop with time and this was a sound start.
BOOGIE LIFE, a winner last time, sets the standard after a Carlisle win. Under a penalty she saw her race out but was held once the winner forged ahead.
NUTS WELL ran a good second here but may have found this surface a little more lively than ideal.
Make a note of FAIRY THEATRE who was held up in rear, but made steady progress in the final half-mile to take fifth. This looked a step up on her previous effort and she might be one for mares’ hurdles in time.
BAYSBROWN looks a big baby and may well need time. However, he made some progress from three furlongs out before getting outpaced. He should make up into a jumper in time.
John Wade’s CORRELATE led for the first mile but weakened quickly once turned from home. He will presumably show up better in the long term if going chasing.