Whilst most of the country enjoyed the showers of rain we have been waiting for so long for Kingston Blount stayed dry enabling the crowd to enjoy some competitive racing where generally runners were good.
Five of the six winners were favourites; the first of these was Batalov (Gina Andrews) in the Restricted race. Following several consistent runs in this grade he justified odds of 6/4 and beat Minella Moss (Richard Spencer) by 3 lengths. Gina then flew to Higham where she rode two winners further extending her lead at the top of the national championship.
Only two finished in the 2m5f Maiden race, Lismore Lady (Richard Spencer) was having only her third start and won in very impressive style. Trained by Fred Hutsby this 5yr old mare now heads to Doncaster sales in May. Second was Bunas Noches (Anna Stone) who is also trained by Fred. Training the first 2 home is a first for Fred.
Emily Harbour rode the first leg of a double in the Ladies Open. Balladeer who is trained by Alan Hill jumped well throughout and always looked comfortable and won by 10 lengths from Dun Drinan (Jessie Lodge) and third was The Hookie Bookie (Sarah Phizaclea). Balladeer who clearly loves this track will head back here on 29th May.
Start Royal as sent off 1/6 fav and made light work of his only opponent in the Mens Open gaining him more points in the young horse awards competition. Jaamid (James Horton) finished 15 lengths second.
The fastest time of the day was in the Intermediate where Caught in Time (Phil York) continued his climb up the ladder. Unfortunately spectators were denied what looked like being an exciting finish when Duke of Kentford (Nick Pearce) slipped up on the bend before the second last. They had been neck and neck down the back with Caught in Time jumping slightly better and jockey Phil York had felt he was always going the best. Trainer Karen Lawther explained 'Phil had ridden in the first two races at Pepper Harrow finishing first and second, driven here like a lunatic and his license was handed in just before declarations closed! Thank god he made it as he gets on so well with this horse.' Finishing second was Thatmakestwoofus (James Tudor) and Pongo's Nephew (Sharon Firmin) third.
Mr Cee Jay Finally lost his Maiden tag in impressive style; always in command he went on to win by 30 lengths providing Emily Harbour with the second leg of her double. Trainer/ Owner Sue Harbour explained 'He only cost us £450 as he had a leg problem, we gave him 12 months off and he has never looked back'. Connections will be hoping now he has got his head in front he can continue to do so.
The closing race, the Members was an eventful one. Only two ran Bon Accord (James Tudor) and Ocean du Moulin (Gaby Hill). They went a very fast pace and looked to be both going well when four out Ocean du Moulin made a terrible mistake and Gaby did very well to stay on however she lost an iron that she jumped the third last without. Unfortunately Gravity took over and was sadly unseated on the second last bend which left Bon Accord to finish alone. Trainer Alan Hill felt that both were going extremely well and thought it would have been a close finish.
A great day where Alan Hill as always had done a super job with the ground and must be thanked for the extensive watering him and his team do.
The next area meeting is at Whitfield this Sunday 15th May.