by Bob Bracher and Gill Armstrong

A glorious Spring day saw a bumper holiday crowd enjoy a fine day’s racing at the Cattistock Hunt’s point-to-point at Littlewindsor on Saturday.  The meeting proved a triumph for David Pipe, who saddled three winners, including a first ever success for Jo Holmes riding her own Barryscourt Lad, and a first ever double for Miranda (‘Wib’) Roberts.

Wib began the day by winning the Hunt race aboard Hilary Tutte’s home bred mare, Jolie Roslin.  Hilary, from Bradford Peverell near Dorchester, is currently helping out with son Peter Shaw’s herd of cattle following his accident at Badbury Rings when he broke a shoulder.  The winner’s dam, Robina, is a half-sister to Rodden Brook, successful for Hilary in the early 1990s.

Highway Oak won the 2½ mile Open Maiden for owner/breeder Malcolm White and rider Nick Mitchell.  This was a first training success for Malcolm’s son, Ben and his girlfriend Maya Horsey, who have three horses in their yard at Ansty, near Blandford.  The winner’s granddam, Hilda’s Way, also raced successfully for Malcolm, including a win at the Cattistock Hunt meeting in 1980.

          David Pipe’s first victory was courtesy of Juvantique, just winning the Restricted under Ashley Farrant.  The five-year-old prevailed in a battle with Working Lunch over the last few fences.  The fine performance was even more noteworthy in that his rider, Ashley Farrant, could not make 11st 7lbs and carried 6lb overweight.

Red Brook Lad was a smooth winner of the Ladies’ Open for owner Charles Fox and rider Rachel Green.  Rachel, who rode her first winner at Ston Easton last Sunday, easily beat market rival Daraydan by 10 lengths.  Rachel, who works at Robert Alner’s stable, looks after Charles’ Priestthorn, who has been running under Rules this season.

Pipe and Farrant notched their individual doubles courtesy of Stacky Light in the Men’s Open.  This proved to be a virtual match, with Chris Batterham’s Stacky Light staying on better than market rival Rimpton Boy.

In the Intermediate race, Barryscourt Lad provided owner/rider Jo Holmes with her first ever victory in the final leg of David Pipe’s treble.  Jo, 30, a vet in the Household Cavalry, is now looking forward to partnering her mount in the Novice Hunters Chase at Aintree on Grand National day.

Dunbay, ridden by Wib Roberts replacing Peter Shaw, won the final race, the Open Maiden.  The horse, owned by Jilly Kelly, was bought by her from breeder James Hall in Northumberland two years ago, having raced in two National Hunt flat races in 2000.  This victory confirmed the promise the eight-year-old had shown when finishing third in a Maiden race at Barbury Castle three weeks ago and should give a boost to trainers Peter and Fiona Shaw, as Peter recovers from his injury.