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2019 Report:

The curtain came down on the 2018/19 Northern Area Point-to-Point season with last Saturday's Haydon meeting at Hexham Racecourse, which attracted runners from as far away as Inverurie, Barnsley, Scarborough and Lanark.

 

It turned out to be a great day for the Yorkshire raiders with 5 of the 7 winners trained in the White Rose County.

 

Matts Commission (Jack Teal) scored on his seasonal debut at Alnwick five months ago and ended the campaign by landing the Lycetts NPPA Conditions Race. The 6 year old held a narrow advantage from five out before extending his lead to five lengths approaching
the penultimate fence. Teal's mount cruised home four lengths ahead of Habbie Simpson (Tabitha Threadgall) with Ladyvie (Lucy Provan) a further fifteen lengths away in third place.

 

This was a 40th career success, including 1 under Rules on Hafajay in the recent Heart Of All England Maiden Hunters' Chase, for Malton-based Teal, with 25% of these coming in the last seven weeks since recovering from a broken collarbone sustained at the
Brocklesby fixture on February 16. Following a number of solid efforts under Rules last season from Nick Alexander's yard, Dutch Canyon (Lucy Brown) made the most of a drop in class with a twenty length victory over Hooligan Jack (Charlotte Tailford) in the
Carrs Billington Fuels Open Maiden Race.

 

Returning from a nine-month break and having his first start for Selkirk handler, Lesley Coltherd, the 9 year old forced the pace from the off and, jumping boldly out in front, could be called the winner a long way from home.

 

The Craigsteel gelding was bought privately last year by Stow farmer and former point-to-point jockey, James Muir. It is more than 20 years since he got off the mark on Thinkaboutthat at the now defunct Lanark Racecourse.

 

Miss Carney hit the front five out in the Graham Reader Motor Engineer Restricted Race before powering clear from the next and Emma Todd's mount eventually came home as the only finisher when Buzzkillbob, who was more than a fence behind at the time, pulled
up after two out.

 

This 6 year old Dansant mare was bought for £10,000 at Goffs Doncaster Sales in May 2018 by Tracey Corrigan, who trains at Sawdon near Scarborough. ''I haven't had too many runners at Hexham over the years but it's been a lucky venue as Imps Way won two
hunters' chases here in 2005 including the ''Heart'', said Tracey.

 

Her biggest claim to fame is riding the winner of the Kiplingcotes Derby on four occasions, including the 2019 renewal in March on her own point-to-pointer, Zandino. The Kiplingcotes Derby, which takes place on a four-mile course near Market Weighton and
first run in 1519, is widely accepted to be the oldest annual horse race in the English sporting calendar.

 

Amie Waugh was gifted a 40th career winner between the flags when her mount, Winged Crusader was the only horse declared from the 18 entries for the Chesterwood Bastle Holiday Cottage Six-Year-Olds and over Conditions Race.

 

The 11 year old Winged Love gelding, trained by Amie and owned by her father, Simon, is the outright leader in the prestigious National Champion Horse standings and heads to the South Durham fixture at Sedgefield on Sunday in search of a ninth victory of
the season.

 

Jess Bedi extended her lead over Lily Bradstock and Laura Fenwick in the National Novice Riders Championship with another win on course specialist, Iron Chancellor in the NIS Group Services Ltd & High Plains Ladies Open Race. Sent on approaching two out,
the evergreen 14 year old stayed on strongly to beat Damiens Dilemma (Amie Waugh) by five lengths, with Abbeyview (Laura Fenwick) a further ten lengths away in third.

 

Jess, who has just completed her final exams in Textile Design at Teesside University, said: ''At home you'd think he wanted to be retired but on the track he's totally different and gets into top gear after three miles.''

 

More than 10 years after making his debut, Iron Chancellor continues to prove that age is no barrier. From 64 career starts, he has won 14 and been placed 27 times. In the last two seasons since being bought by Jess Bedi's grandmother, Sandra Barker, the
gelding has continued to thrive in the North with 6 wins and 7 placings from 15 Pointing starts under Jess.

 

Cherry Coward was the trainer to follow as her only two runners, Game As A Pheasant and Tom Horn struck gold to take her seasonal tally of winners to 18.

 

After being sidelined for most of the campaign with a broken leg, Coward's stable jockey, Jack Andrews has been making up for lost time with three winners since returning to action four weeks ago. He was content to track the leaders on Game As A Pheasant
from the outset in the Strutt & Parker Men's Open Race before pressing the button after three out and the response was immediate as his mount took it up at the next before forging clear to score by twelve lengths from Carlos Gardel (John Dawson). Once again,
course winner, Carlos Gardel ran his heart out and was honourably retired after the race by his Barnsley-based owner/trainer, Alison Christmas.

 

Three months after her first ride at Duncombe Park, Cara Richardson, 24, enjoyed a first winner on Tom Horn in the 2m4f Codlaw Renewable Energy Ltd Conditions Race. The 13 year old headed odds-on favourite, Forgivienne (Will Milburn) with a better jump three
out and kept finding extra in the home straight to prevent his rival from getting back on terms.

 

This former 130-rated chaser and hurdler won five times under Rules in Ireland prior to November 2014 and, more recently, ran in both Cross Country Chases at the 2018 Punchestown Festival. He was bought privately last year by Drew Holmes with the intention
of giving Cara a first ride in the Percy Members Race at Alnwick on February 3 but that meeting was called off due to frost.

 

The main action was preceded by 2 well contested pony races, both sponsored by Shaw & Co, Solicitors. The 138cm Novice Riders contest had 9 runners and saw Telynau Master Oats (Faith Rourke) beat Larkfield Lad (Jake Dickson) by a neck with Kakusta Jacobean
(Enya Currie) in third. The 148cm Open race had 6 runners and resulted in a more clear-cut success for the in-form Indian River (Shay Farmer) from Hawkesfield Flyer (Joshua Thompson) and Milli Butterfly (Alfie Nichols).

 

Nick Orpwood carried off the Albert Bartlett (Airdrie) Ltd Men's Jockeys Chamionship for a third time (2015, 2017 & 2019), Amie Waugh retained the youngsRPS Ladies Championship, while Tabitha Threadgall lifted the NPPA Novice Rider title.

 

Winger Crusader, owned by Simon Waugh, won the £500 George F White Champion Horse Award, with Jimmy Walton's home-bred Frankies Fire taking both the Novice Horse Chamionship and leading mare award.

 

In the Hexham Racecourse-sponsored South Northumberland Point-to-Point Series covering this season's Border, Haydon, Morpeth and Tynedale fixtures, Amie Waugh was the leading jockey, while Abbeyview's consistency ensured that Laura Fenwick was the leading
owner. Finally, Jack Andrews picked up the Tony Ward Memorial Trophy as the leading jockey at the Border and Haydon fixtures.

 

PETER BURGON

2018 Report:

One of the warmest days at Hexham Racecourse since the Haydon Point-to-Point moved there in 1995 helped to attract a good crowd for the penultimate Northumbrian fixture of the 2017/18 Northern Area
season. It proved to be another worthwhile trip from Ireland for Hawick-born jockey, Tom Hamilton, who virtually secured the Area Men's Jockeys Championship for a second time with a double on Slanemore Hill and Extreme Appeal.

Slanemore Hill still had a couple of lengths to make up on the favourite and long time leader, Miss Carney approaching the last in the Gary Hall Building Ltd Open Maiden Race but Hamilton conjured up a renewed effort from the 6 year old who stayed on strongly
to gain the upper hand fifty yards from the line and score by one and a half lengths with the unfancied Call Zac a further half length away in third after producing a career best effort on his reappearance under Emma Todd.

 

The winner, owned and trained by former jumps jockey, Tony Ross, who retired from the saddle in 2008, was bought unraced for 9000 euros at the Tattersalls Ireland Sale in August 2016. Ross is best known for his association with Function Dream, who won
five races in a row in the 2000/01 campaign, including Wetherby's Castleford Chase, the Victor Chandler Chase at Ascot and Sandown Park's Game Spirit Chase.

 

Ross, who now runs a successful livery yard in Malton and is very good at educating and breaking in young horses, said of his Court Cave gelding: ''He was backward and immature when he arrived and so I've been very patient with him. He's still a big, raw
horse with very few miles on the clock, will make a good three mile chaser and is off to Goffs Doncaster Sales next month.''

 

Extreme Appeal made the long journey from Kelly Morgan's Withcote yard near Oakham pay dividends in the 2m4f Codlaw Renewable Energy Ltd Intermediate Race. Under a well judged ride from Hamilton, the 6 year old was produced to hit the front after two out
and turned the closing stages into a procession when coming home twenty lengths ahead of odds-on favourite, Roderick Random.

 


 

 

Morgan, who runs Preston Lodge Stud for her boss, Johnny Weatherby, said of her charge: ''He won twice at Cottenham at the end of 2016 but struck into himself on the gallops just before his hat-trick bid there in February 2017 and was sidelined for almost
a year. When I looked through the Race Planner there were no other races for him until May and it's only a three and a half hour drive to Hexham. Chipmunk, my only previous runner in the North, won at Alnwick in December 2016.''

 

Jedburgh Grammar School pupil, Lucy Brown, 17, enjoyed a memorable first riding success on Sorcier in the Carrs Billington Fuels (Hexham) Restricted Race. Her mount was sent clear before heading out on the final circuit and never looked like being caught,
eventually coasting home a distance in front of Worcester Pearmain.

 

The gelding's Bonchester Bridge-based owner/trainer, Philippa Shirley-Beavan was full of praise for Brown, who lives nearby, and said: ''She's been coming in to ride out before or after school most days and does everything with him.''

 

Brown added: ''He took off as soon as he hit the front and still finished full of running in the holding ground. I've only got a week left at school and plan to take a year out next year before going to University. My great-grandfather was the late Ken
Oliver, who used to train at Denholm, and I've wanted to be a point-to-point jockey since I was very young.''

 


 

 

After facing some very tough assignments in hunters' chases since the turn of the year, Winged Crusader got back in a winning groove in the Chesterwood Bastle Holiday Cottage six-year-olds and over Conditions Race to provide jockey, Amie Waugh with her
25th career success between the flags. There was never more than three lengths between Waugh's mount and 2015 course winner, Up To Al (Abby Robertson) from the outset until the former gradually drew clear from two out to score by six lengths.

 

Waugh said: ''He didn't like the ground but that was a good confidence restorer and I'll probably keep him Pointing for the time being.''

 


 

 

Only one of the nine entries for the Fisher German Men's Open Race was declared, resulting in a walk-over for John Dawson's mount, Dance Of Time. Dawson took his seasonal tally to 20 with another winner at Witton Castle on Sunday. Dance Of Time could head
further north on Friday for a Perth Hunters' Chase as he chases an eighth win a row. His end of season target is the prestigious John Corbet Cup at Stratford on Friday 8th June providing there's still plenty of cut in the ground.

 


 

 

After giving Teesside University student, Jessica Bedi a first winner at Hornby Castle the previous week, proven stayer Iron Chancellor struck gold again in the Graham Reader Motor Engineer Ladies Open Race. Always close up, the 13 year old picked up well
before two out and survived a bad blunder when four lengths up at the last to beat Oscar Stanley by five lengths with Lucky Cody (Alex Duncan) running a blinder in third after a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

 


 

 

Will Ramsay, 49, enjoyed another win on the ultra consistent Pyjama Game in the Lycetts NPPA Conditions Race. The veteran Another Dark Rum is proving to be an ideal schoolmaster for Patrick Wadge and the partnership led throughout the final circuit until
being collared two out. Whats Left then took up the running but couldn't respond when Ramsay's mount jumped into the lead at the last before pulling four lengths clear on the run-in.

 

Ramsay remains as enthusiastic as ever and, as usual, his head-cam footage should make good viewing on You-Tube. He is running a beginners' jockeys course at Buchtrig near Coldstream on Monday 28th May with assistance from Tim Reed and Ryan Mania and is
also keen to get a new novice rider on the Pointing ladder next season by offering to lease Great Gusto and Pyjama Game to a suitable candidate.

 


 

 

The main action was preceded by two well contested pony races, sponsored by Shaw & Co. Solicitors. Fife raider, Ninfield Millionaire's Splendour (Elliot Stockwell) completed a 2018 hat-trick in the 138cm race over five furlongs, with Ravara Super Ted (Shay
Farmer) in second place and Oakville Thomas (Frances Cromarty) in third. Judge Fox (Archie Frank) followed up a recent Tynedale victory in the 148cm contest over six and a half furlongs with a ten lengths success over Hawkesfield Flyer (Joshua Thompson).

 


 

 

PETER BURGON

2017 Report:

The penultimate fixture of the Northern Area season saw 47 runners, including 18 Yorkshire raiders, face the starter on the Haydon's seven race card at Hexham Racecourse on Sunday and it turned out to be a good day for the White Rose county with Rosie
Du Berlais, Sam's Treasure and Martha's Benefit all visiting the winners' enclosure.

 

Poetic Presence was the first of four Scottish-trained winners in the Warrens Nothing Wasted Open Maiden Race, giving Thomas Willmott, 17, a memorable first win as a jockey. Always in the leading pair, the 7 year old took it up six out and held off the
persistent challenge of the favourite, Areyouasking to secure a two lengths verdict.

 

Selkirk-based Willmott, who has been working for Stuart Coltherd since leaving school, said of the mare: ''She was very game, kept finding another gear and might be even better over hurdles as she's slick and low over her fences. I came to Hexham expecting
to ride stable companion, Teddiemoy in the Open Maiden but had no hesitation in switching mounts when her owner, Johnny Ferguson made a last minute decision not to ride.''

 

Cave Hunter didn't see another rival when landing the North's most valuable contest, the £1500 Gary Hall Building Ltd Men's Open Race, in the hands of Tom Hamilton, who had flown in from Ireland earlier in the day. Granted an uncontested lead, the 10 year
old maintained a relentless gallop throughout the three and a quarter mile trip and coasted home ten lengths ahead of One Conemara in a time just outside his own course record set in May 2016.

 

Winning owner, Niel Manning said: '' He's had a light season, loves top of the ground and will probably go again next Sunday in the Kelso Hunters' Chase which he has won for the last two years.''

 

Oscar Stanley had hinted that his winning turn was not far away when 3rd to Mr Raj in a Sedgefield Hunters' Chase earlier in the month and duly delivered the goods in the SafeandSecure24 Ladies Open Race under a well judged ride from Joanna Walton. Sent
on five out, the 10 year old stayed on strongly in the closing stages to beat Beau D'Argent by five lengths with Whisperdale a further three lengths away in third place.

 

The gelding's Bonchester Bridge-based owner/trainer, Diana Walton said: ''I knew he was very well as he had put me off during the week but I didn't tell Joanna that until this morning.''

 

Coldstream-based owner/trainer/rider, Will Ramsay, 48, travels all over the world with his business, Affordable Art Fairs and only returned to the UK from his latest trip to the Far East on Friday. After finishing in the first four on Great Gusto on all
six starts earlier this season, nobody could begrudge the partnership their moment of glory in the WMH Farm Fresh Meats NPPA Club Members Race. The 11 year old was sent straight into the lead and his jumping was assured. Kitty Fisher tried hard to get on terms
after the last but Ramsay's mount kept finding extra when the chips were down and prevailed by half a length. The winner, who was conceding 10lb to the runner-up, might return to Hexham for the Border's evening card on Tuesday 30th May.

 

Rosie Du Berlais made it two wins from her last three starts in the Chesterwood Bastle Holiday Cottage 6 year olds and over Hexham Racing Club Members Riders Conditions Race. With regular pilot, Christy Furness in action at Garthorpe, Middleham-based Ross
Wilson made the most of his only ride of the day. The 11 year old tracked the favourite, Five Piers from five out before taking it up after the last and staying on best to score by a couple of lengths.

 

Another in-form mare, Sam's Treasure followed up last month's Easingwold Maiden victory by taking the Graham Reader Motor Engineers Restricted Race in the hands of John Dawson, his 25th winner between the flags this season. Susan Mason's home-bred youngster,
a late foal and not officially 5 until next month, led approaching two out and kept on well to beat Danny Mags by one and a half lengths. Susan commented: ''She's not very big and her jumping improved when the pace quickened.''

 

There were a lot of happy Yorkshire punters after Martha's Benefit had justified favouritism in the concluding two and a half mile Stanegate Shooting Syndicate Intermediate Race. Given a peach of a ride by Will Milburn, the 8 year old was sent on after
six out and left her rivals toiling up the home straight, eventually cruising home fifteen lengths ahead of The Mobile Man.

 

In her current form, Andrew Nicholls's mare must have a live chance in the Maiden Hunters' Chase over a similar trip at Cartmel on Bank Holiday Monday.

 

The main action was preceded by a couple of pony races sponsored by Shaw & Co. Solicitors. The contest for ponies 138cm and under went to Maxi in the hands of 14 year old Aiden Redpath, while the 148cm division was won by 14 year old Archie Frank on Judge
Fox.

 


 

 

PETER BURGON

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