Entries & Recent Form

It was the turn of the boys last week, with the stable’s two winners Main Fact and Dell’ Arca partnered by apprentice Luke Catton and conditional jockey Fergus Gillard respectively.  The successes were great for racing too – Main Fact  (pictured above) has acquired something of a following since embarking on his winning spree, whilst Dell’ Arca, the winner of the Greatwood Hurdle at Cheltenham seven years ago next month remains an extremely popular and spritely veteran at the age of eleven.

The week kicked-off with a couple of runners for the David Pipe Racing Club at Exeter on Tuesday when Airton and To Fly Free contested separate divisions of the amateur jockey’s handicap hurdle.  Martin McIntyre was aboard both, his first rides for the stable having joined us in the off-season from Harry Fry.  He is a very experienced rider having enjoyed spells with Enda Bolger in Ireland and Richard Barber with 16 winners under rules during his riding career and more than 60 in point-to-points.

Airton performed creditably to finish third, not beaten far behind an improving winner.  He would be ideally suited by a stiffer test of stamina but continues in good form.  To Fly Free also filled third spot in the other division, travelling well until weakening approaching the last.  She clearly did not stay the 2m2½f trip on this testing track.  Even so, she was far from disgraced and we will drop her back in distance next time.

Make Me A Believer returned from an absence of 376 days with a fabulous performance in the maiden hurdle at Lingfield on Thursday.  In what looked like a very hot race on paper, he was the only one that could live with the eventual winner who is a promising type in his own right, so I really could not have been much more pleased.  He is a smashing sort for the future and I can’t wait to see how he progresses.

Iron Heart made his debut for the stable at Wincanton on Sunday in the juvenile hurdle and he fared nicely for a first attempt over timber, finishing third behind a couple of promising types.

Fact First On The Flat

Onto the winners and I was delighted to see Main Fact resume where he finished last season over jumps, by bolting up on the level at Newbury on Friday.  I had long had it in mind to try to expose a reasonable looking flat mark of 60 and the 2m apprentice jockeys’ race looked the ideal opportunity.  He picked up well in the straight on the heavy ground and was firmly on top in the closing stages to record his sixth win on the spin.  He runs again at Catterick tomorrow and should take the world of beating as he escapes a penalty for this success.  Ben Curtis will ride.

Dell Delivers Again

Our other winner came over the sticks when Dell’ Arca rolled back the years by taking the 3m½f conditional jockeys’ handicap hurdle under Fergus Gillard.  He travelled well throughout and quickened right away in the closing stages to score by five lengths from Fergus’ brother Theo aboard Same Circus.  It is great to get him in the winners’ enclosure again and he is still no back number judged by this effort, even at the age of eleven.

The Week Ahead

Looking to this week and Main Fact will be the first of our runners at Catterick tomorrow afternoon.  We will have three runners on Wednesday with To Fly Free and Stubborn Logic on duty at Fakenham, whilst Mrs Miggins will contest the 2m7f handicap chase at Taunton.

There is another local meeting taking place on Thursday when Newton Abbot host their final meeting of the current campaign.  Paricolor and Gericault Roque are both engaged there and could take their chances.  The latter is a new recruit to the stable who finished placed on his only start in an Irish point-to-point, showing considerable promise in the process.

Later in the week, Panic Attack holds a choice of engagements in mares’ hurdles at Uttoxeter on Friday and Huntingdon on Sunday.  Remastered and Delface complete our entries at Carlisle on Sunday and a decision on their participation will be made later in the week.

Home Sweet Home

I am thrilled to be home after a few days in hospital.  Unfortunately I took a bit of a kicking last Monday which damaged a rib and my spleen.  Iam  feeling much better than I was and am certainly pleased to be out, although I will be taking it easy for a few weeks.  A big thankyou to the doctors and nurses who looked after me during my stay at Musgrove Park Hospital.

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