Less than a year ago the fences the horses negotiate at the Banwen Miners Point to Point lay ruined and it seemed an impossible task at the time for the popular meeting to go ahead.
However, a small group of determined volunteers led by Chairman Billy Hancock, secretary Nia Godsmark and course builder Jamie Morell were not to be deterred, and set about rebuilding the fences to carry on the Bank Holiday tradition. The rain stopped just in time for the first race, and race goers and runners were a plenty.
The Hunt Race was a walkover, with Cygnet enabling Richard Patrick to notch up another winner on the board, keeping his hopes of the National Novice Riders title still alive. Cygnet then ran again in the Mens Open, and came close to lose by a length to the prolific Rosies Peacock and John Mathias. The 13 year old is showing of signs of slowing down, running as bravely as ever.
It was the beginning of a treble for Mathias, who came home in front on Gardiners Hill in the Intermediate. It was a gutsy effort from the winner, who made sure to set a quick pace on the final circuit, running away from his rivals. Northgeorge came home in second, with Canshetrain in third.
Mathias' third winner came in the first division of the Open Maiden, where a well timed ride ensured Last of the Buds came to the lead just in time to lead at the last, leaving runner up Bailito Bay with no extra to find. That race was the slower time of the two Maidens, with the second division going the way of The Mobile Man and Connor Orr. It was another ride that was timed to lead just in time, with runner up Tinkers Hill Tommy, under Peter Bryan, once again coming close to losing his maiden tag.
The Restricted Race, sponsored by Subaru, and local dealers Green Subaru, was won by Indian Leader, under James King. They came home a length in front of long time leader Key People and Bradley Gibbs. The winner carried on a superb run of form for trainer Mickey Bowen, who has an excellent statistical record when it comes to starts and wins, in both Point to Pointing and Hunter Chasing.
The Ladies Open was won by Highly Unlikely and Charlotte Evans. The pair made all in the race, with the other two runners, Watch The Birdie and Lauberhorn, unable to compete with the leader. Lauberhorn pulled up 2 from home, and Watch The Birdie rallied, but couldn't catch the winner, and came home a length behind. The other race on the card, The Confined, went the way of itchymei'mscratch and Tom David. It was a patient ride from David, who was in rear until there was half a circuit to go. Whiffy Chatsby, who finished second, led most of the way, but the winner led approaching the last, and got the better of the long time leader. Itchymei'mscratch could go to the Hunter Chase meeting at Stratford on May 20th next.
The next West Wales meeting will be on June 4th, where the Pembrokeshire Hunt welcome you to Trecoed.