NH Fixtures & Sales Dates

Sat Nov 09
Aintree, Kelso, Wincanton
Sun Nov 10
Ffos Las, Sandown
Mon Nov 11
Carlisle, Kempton, Stratford

Cheltenham Festival 2020

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Entries & Recent Form

It is great to see the stable continue in such good form with another good winner yesterday.  Paricolor ran out a decisive winner of the amateur riders' handicap hurdle at Fakenham.  Given a confident ride by up and coming young amateur Fergus Gillard, he moved closer at the end of the back straight and swept around the leader off the home turn to win going away.  This was Fergus' first winner for the stable and we were all very pleased for him.  It was also fantastic for owners' Guy and Jane Cunningham who have had horses at Pond House for many years and will have greatly enjoyed this success.  Paricolor is only a three year old who has had four starts over hurdles, so he is certainly open to improvement and looks capable of winning again.  Over at Lingfield Yaa Salaam ran a very nice race when close runner-up to a potentially very useful type.  He seemed to handle the heavy ground okay but may be even better on a sounder surface.

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There are four meetings taking place this afternoon with jumps action from Fakenham and Lingfield supported by all-weather cards from Kempton and Chelmsford City.  It has certainly been a chilly start to the day as you will see from the great picture above which was taken by our assitant, Ali G-P.  David has runners at both fixtures today with Paricolor running at Fakenham and Yaa Salaam and Fort Summer at Lingfield.  Paricolor contests the 2m amateur riders' handicap hurdle at 2.10pm and he will be ridden by Fergus Gillard who takes 7lbs off his back.  He was right in contention when capsizing at the penultimate hurdle at Wincanton last time and with a clear round, he must be involved in the finish. 

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What a great day for the stable at Cheltenham yesterday afternoon with a double courtesy of Duc de Beauchene and Israel Champ.  Duc de Beauchene was a decisive winner of the conditional jockeys' handicap hurdle under a well-judged ride from Jonjo O'Neill Jr (pictured above).  He stayed on strongly in the closing stages despite racing keenly early on and looks another progressive young horse for the stable.  He handled the testing conditions well, although he may prove even better suited to a stronger run race.  Israel Champ made all of the running to land the Listed bumper to close the meeting.  He clearly benefited enormously from his rules debut at Worcester and confirmed the high regard in which he is held.  A winning point-to-pointer in Ireland he will be even better over further with a set of obstacles to jump and he is obviously a very nice prospect.  I thought that Warthog ran a blinder in the BetVictor Gold Cup on Saturday, jumping really well in front in the hands of David Noonan to post a personal best in third place.

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There are just two meetings taking place this afternoon, but what good action we have to look forward to with jumps cards coming from Cheltenham and Fontwell.  It is the final day of Cheltenham's November meeting today and David will be kept busy with four runners; Duc de Beauchene, Rathlin Rose, Eden du Houx (pictured above) and Israel Champ.

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There are five meetings taking place this afternoon with jumps cards from Cheltenham, Uttoxeter and Wetherby whilst there are two all-weather flat fixtures from Lingfield and Wolverhampton.  It is fantastic news that Cheltenham gets the go ahead after an inspection yesterday afternoon.  The third last will be omitted on both the hurdle and chase card and the 2m5f novices' hurdle that was scheduled for yesterday kicks off the card at 12.05pm.  It is a bid day for the stable with David having six runners at Cheltenham today; Poker Play, Ramses de Teillee, Eamon An Cnoic, Warthog, Vieux Lion Rouge (pictured above) and Remastered.

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Following the abandonment of Cheltenham yesterday afternoon we are left with just two jumps meetings from Newcastle and Southwell.  You could see from the pictures on social media that they had very little chance of racing today with standing water at the bottom of the hill and heavy rain persisting.  Fortunately the forecast isn't so bad and the course drains very quickly.  They inspect this afternoon to see if they can race tomorrow - let's hope that there are no more problems.  In the meantime, there are no runners from Pond House today and messrs Scudamore and Noonan can take the day off.

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There was a great win for Queens Cave (pictured above) at Exeter yesterday afternoon when she ran out a convincing winner of the mares' novices hurdle to brighten a dark and dingy day.  An excellent second after a lay-off last time, it is great to see her back in the winners' enclosure.  She is a lovely mare and hopefully she can go on to better things from here.  Nordic Combined ran another solid race to finish third in the handicap hurdle and it is surely only a matter of time before he gets his head in front.  Mrs Miggins finished fourth in the conditional jockeys' handicap hurdle which was a creditable effort considering they were racing from a long way out.  Midnight Magic was still in with every chance when falling at the penultimate fence and he seemed to be handling the soft ground just fine, so that will open up more opportunities for him.

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