by Peter Mansell
Photos by Graham Fisher

Last years leading rider Richard Burton and Stuart Morris, one of his main challengers for the 2004 Title both scored doubles during Saturdays Harkaway Club fixture at Chaddesley Corbett. Julian Pritchard’s hopes of taking the title were dented when the Ledbury rider suffered a suspected broken collar bone after Martin Ossie had fallen in Division II of the Maiden.

Jemaro provided Burton with the first leg of his double after that horse had scored an easy win in the Mens Open. This combination drew clear of their rivals on the climb out of the back straight and always had the race in safe keeping from that point. Teme Willow looked destined for the runners up spot before losing that position to the fast finishing Rusty Fellow on the run in.

Mens Open winner Jemaro and Richard Burton lead at the final ditch from Rolling Maul (James Horton) 
and Teme Willow (Julian Pritchard)

Cedric Brook’s Jackson provided Burton with his second win of the afternoon in Division I of the younger Maiden. The Andrew Dalton trained 7-year-old had proved a disappointment under Rules for previous trainers Venetia Williams and Andrews wife Heather, but Jackson was given a confident ride and had this race won turning for home and a Restricted is certainly within his capabilities.

Richard Burton's double comes in the Younger Horses Maiden Div 1 on Jackson - seen here in third place behind Gunsmoke (Nick Oliver) and runner up New Lodge Express (Tim Stephenson) at the open ditch

Court Adjourn (Division II of the 5, 6 & 7 year-old Maiden) and Tender Tangle (Division II of the 8-year-old and upward Maiden) provided Stuart Morris with his two winners. Court Adjourn and Martin Ossie were inseparable as they raced downhill into the home straight but the latter was just beginning to struggle coming to the last and the issue was put beyond doubt when the Dick Baimbridge trained gelding fell leaving Sir Michael Connells gelding to coast home to victory while Pritchard was left contemplating a spell on the sidelines. Tender Trap’s jumping was far from fluent in the concluding Maiden, but he was able to maintain a relentless gallop and came home 20 lengths clear of Craiova Comet.

Martin Ossie and Julian Pritchard (nearside) locked together two out with winner Court Adjourn (Stuart Morris) 
in the Younger Horses Maiden Div 2... Martin Ossie crashed at the last leaving Julian with a broken collar bone

Tender Tangle and Stuart Morris (right) are lead by Sovereign Gale and Richard Burton at the first ditch before going on to victory in the Older Horses Maiden Div 2

Fate had conspired against Pritchard in the Members because William Lionheart galloped well clear of his rivals and jumped the penultimate perfectly only to collapse in a heap about 20 yards after the fence. Their demise left The Camdonian to see off the challenge of Dare and provide Ed Walker with his first win of the season.

William Lionheart and Julian Pritchard are on their own at the last in the Club Members' only to stumble and fall after landing...

Paul Morris helps with the faller as concern grows for the horse...

William Lionheart thankfully none the worse - he was "bouncing" the following morning

Polly Gundry’s mount Sailors Folly was a warm favourite for the Ladies but the West Country challenger fell at the second, and with long time leader Ghutah weakening dramatically from the 15th this left Pacon to score an easy win under Hannah Kinsey.

Pacon and Hannah Kinsey spring a surprise in the Ladies Open 

There was compensation for Gundry later in the afternoon when she partnered Clive Bennett’s Fertile Valley to victory in the Intermediate. A small but select field faced the starter for this race but only Cider Man was able to match strides with the favourite during the final half mile and Fertile Valley had to pull out all the stops to maintain his unbeaten record for the season.

Fertile Valley and Polly Gundry get in close at the second last before going on to win the Club Members' Intermediate

Trainer Ben Tulloch returns with his Intermediate winner Fertile Valley 

Stoke Bliss trainer/rider Emma James scored her first win of the 2004 campaign following Dorset Ferns hard fought win in Division I of the older Maiden. There was a blanket finish to this contest but Miss James’s delivered her mount with a race winning run right on the post. 

Sales Dodger leads Strong Finish, Jolly Jake, Knighton Star and Jenny's Charmer in the Older Horses Maiden Div 1

Stuart Morris may only have got as far as the eighth on Knighton Star, but is soon off in search of his next winner!

Longville Lad and Paul Cowley are impressive winners of the Restricted