Saturday 15th April 2006
by Lucy Johnson
The new point-to-point course at Upcott
Cross, where the Eggesford staged the inaugural meeting, was given
the big thumbs up by trainers and jockeys alike. Overnight rain had
produced good to soft going, which became increasingly holding as
the day went on, and stamina was the order of the day at this out
and out stayers track, but everyone was unanimous in their belief
that the flat right handed track is a welcome edition to the Devon
and Cornwall circuit.
Dorset-based trainer Richard Barber, who
suffered two defeats with the well backed Reviewer and El Nombre
before Rachel Green delivered on Nevada Royale in the Restricted,
said: “They’ve made an excellent job of the course and
there are no problems here at all. It is a real stayers’
track but it’s a great addition.”
Nevada Royale had a cake walk in the
restricted, taking up the lead with three fences to go and then
winning easily by 25 lengths. The five-year-old, who is owned by
champion trainer elect Paul Nicholls with Kathy Stuart and Anthony
Bromley, could have a tilt at a novices’ hunter chase at
Newton Abbot in two weeks time.
Odds on favourite Reviewer was held up in his
usual position at the rear of the field and Green made her move on
the turn for home before moving upsides eventual winner Investor
Relations with two fences to go. But the latter proved too good and
won by two lengths, providing owner Mike Tozer with his first win
with trainer Chloe Newman.
She was at Burnham Market Horse Trials,
helping her event rider sister Sophie, and it was up to jockey
Tanya Newman and her 14-year-old son Josh to ready the horse for
“I won a hurdle race on him four years
ago at Newton Abbot and this is my first win of the season,”
said Newman who added that his below par performance at Kingston St
Mary last time out was due to a problem with his neck.
“He’s had a lot of physio since then which has
El Nombre was odds on to deliver for the
Green/Barber combination in the Intermediate, but he ploughed
through the second last, which hindered his chances and Long Night
held on under a fine ride from Richard Woollacott who scored a
It was a good day for trainer Marie McGuiness
whose husband Leigton had already saddled a winner at Cothelstone.
She trains the horse at Stockland Lovell Manor for The It’ll
Be A Long Night Partnership, a group of friends from Somerset whose
spokesman John Sherwin said: “We came here because it’s
a long galloping tack and we thought the ground would suit. Marie
has done a fantastic job with him keeping him sound and he’s
been swimming everyday.”
Woollacott had earlier scored in the confined
on Oliver Carter’s Early Edition who is now with Tony and
Pauline Geering at Lifton in Devon. The ten-year-old was sent ahead
at the second last and scored readily from Gin ‘n’
Fonic. Tony Geering said: “I led up his dam Ottery News in
1979 when she won a maiden ridden by Grant Cann. We’ve had
him five weeks and we’ve managed two wins from two runners
for Mr Carter.”
Woollacott later scored in the men’s
open aboard Finewood, trained by his partner Emely Thompson, who
won on his own after Richard Hawker parted company from Charliebob
at the last and then remounted to finish second.
Penny and Simon Cave’s home bred Lets
Dance, ridden by their daughter Tabitha, took the first maiden,
which proved a memorable occasion for the family who put the
seven-year-old on the sides lines after he was ruled out for two
years with leg problems.
Finest performance of the day came from car
mechanic Lee Rowe, 26, and his partner Joanne Cole who had Can You
Talk as fit as a fiddle for his seasonal debut, holding off the
persistent challenge of evens favourite Continental to win the
second maiden by five lengths. It was Rowes’ second win of
his riding career, having first scored six years ago.
Sally Rowe had kicked off proceedings with
Canada who won the opening member’s race with Russell Ross
Hunt Members, 12st (5 runners) Canada (Mr R
Ross) 1; Nditlir (Mr C Heard) 2; Procedure (Mr J Guerriero) 3. Ms S
Rowe; 12l, distance; 7.03.
Ladies Open: Investor Relations (Miss T
Newman) 1; Reviewer (Miss R Green) 2; Atavistic (Miss R Booth) 3.
Miss C Newman; 2l, 20l; 7.11.
Confined: Early Edition (Mr R Woollacott) 1;
Gin ‘n’ Fonic (Mr C Heard) 2; Bruthuinne (Mr D McKenna)
3. Mr and Mrs Geering; 2l, 12l, 7.13.
Intermediate : Long Night (Mr R Woollacott)
1; El Nombre (Miss R Green) 2; Gunners Mistake (Mr C Dailly) 3. Mrs
M McGuiness; 2l, 8l; 7.18.
Restricted: Nevada Royale (Miss R Green) 1;
Little Apple Bay (Mr A Holdsworth) 2; Nowhips (Miss P Gundry) 3. Mr
R barber, 25l, 12l, 7.09.
Men’s Open: Finewood (Mr R Woollacott)
1; Charliebob (Mr R Hawker) 2. Miss E Thompson, distance, 7.35.
Open Maiden div I: Lets Dance ( Miss T Cave)
1; Sure How Bad (Mr C Dailly) 2; Oh So Naughty (Miss J Congdon) 3.
Mrs P cave; 1l, 5l; 7.28.
Open Maiden div II: Can You Talk (Mr L Rowe)
1; Continental (Mr J Guerriero) 2; Ability (Mr C Dailly) 3. Mr L
Rowe and Miss J Cole; 5l, 10l; 7.29.