by Brian & Gill Armstrong

The Cotley Hunt held their annual point-to-point at Cotley Farm on Bank Holiday Monday. A large crowd enjoyed a good day’s racing which ended with a Charity Hound Race staged in aid of the Chard & District Riding for the Disabled Association.

The opening Hunt race went to Knight Of Passion and Charlotte Tizzard, who had the race in safekeeping when closest challenger Dale Creek refused at the second last. Winner of the corresponding race in 1998, Knight Of Passion is trained at Milborne Port by Charlotte’s father Alan for Ilminster decorator Richard Crabb, who bought the horse privately as a four-year-old. Knight Of Passion broke down in the 2000 Cheltenham Foxhunters, but is a credit to his connections who nurse him along and may aim him at this race again next season.

The Open Maiden race for 56&7yo was won by See More Fun and Nick Williams who just held the late challenge of The Nelson Touch. See More Fun is trained at South Barrow by Rosemary Vickery and carries the familiar black and yellow “Tinotops” colours of Castle Cary owners Raymond and Evelyn Targett who bought the horse from neighbour Chris Barber.

The Sally Alner-trained Unlimited Free made most of the running to win the Mixed Open race under owner Dido Harding. Unlimited Free - who ran here to fit in with Dido’s business schedule, which involves regular travel to Asia – has now won three races this season and has recovered well from a cut sustained when finishing ninth in the Liverpool Foxhunters in April.

The Countryside Alliance Club Members race for 10yo&above went to Lord Of The Mist who led four out for an easy success under Nick Williams. Lord Of The Mist, who is trained at Seaborough by Richard Barber for brother-in-law Peter Maltby, has now won five of his seven 2004 outings and should be followed throughout the rest of the season.

The Restricted race was won by Captain Random who was in command when closest challenger Harjach pulled up approaching the last. Captain Random is trained at Bineham by rider Jane Reed who owns the horse in partnership with Diana Bell of Long Sutton. Captain Random runs in the familiar royal blue, red and gold colours carried with distinction by Mr Golightly in the late 1990s.

Collier led throughout the final circuit to take the Open Maiden race (8yo&above) to give Tincleton owner-rider Tim Atkinson his first riding success since 1999. Tim will soon be leaving for a working holiday in South Africa, so Collier may be for sale and, hopes trainer Sarah Clarke, stay in her Milton Abbas yard.