Photos by Peter & Marilyn Sweet (Sweet Photography)
The Cheshire Forest meeting between the flags took place in glorious sunshine at Tabley, which attracted a large crowd who were treated to a really good days racing. Once again the clerk of the course Rob Hankey had done a great job with the course to produce good ground on the day, and he was rewarded with plenty of runners.
Trainer Kelda Wood has never looked back since her move to Pamela Sykes yard at Bishops Castle and Fresh Love provided her with her fourth winner of the season in the Men’s Open. The Fresh Breeze gelding made virtually every yard under Will Telfer for a very comfortable 3 length success from Richard Burton on The Accordian Man with Von Originy a similar distance back in third. The winner is owned by Mike Rowley from Droitwich.
Forty minutes later Kelda Wood was back in the winners enclosure with Shafts Chance in the Ladies Open; the mare and Kelda Wood needed the line and it just came in time as Angela Rucker on Petit Lord were finishing like an express train, they failed by a fast diminishing neck and the runner up was in front a stride past the post but they pay on the jam stick. The winner is also owned by the trainer who is having her best ever season so far with 5 winners to date.
The best finish of the day came in the Connolly’s Red Mills Intermediate race. Chalk It Up under Jamie Jenkinson set out to make every yard from flag fall and succeeded to do so by a neck from the fast finishing Sweden under Richard Burton with Belligerent third a further 8 lengths away. The winning rider was recording his first point to point winner, he had previously ridden a winner under rules at Hereford. Jenkinson works at Hadnall for Sheila Crow. The winner is trained by Jean Balmer, the secretary of the Tanatside Hunt, and the gelding is owned jointly by Ian Anderson and David Barlow.
After finishing second twice Richard Burton found the winners enclosure with the classy Shales Army in the Restricted. The Alflora gelding put in a brilliant display of jumping and found a very good turn of foot on the run in to win easily by 5 lengths from Turn Card with Keenans Reserve a further neck back in third. Winning trainer Caroline Robinson thinks very highly of the winner, speaking after the race, she said, “That was very pleasing, he has always jumped beautifully at home, his brother Shales Ay Jay is the same. The ground was perfect for him today and Richard (Burton) thinks a lot of him. He has improved since he won at Bangor and there is more to come from him. That might just be it now for the season as he is a young horse at only 5.” The winner ran in the well known colours of the trainers late father Jeremy Beasley.
Burton went on to complete a double, his 24th winner of the season aboard the Gary Hanmer trained Bangkok Bob in the Open Maiden, the combination winning a shade cosily by 3 lengths from Call Me A Lady with the front two pulling well clear of the third horse Big John Macarty. Hanmer clearly thinks a lot of the winner as he nominated him last season as the horse to follow from his yard. The winner is owned locally by Stephen and Ruth Evason from Ashley, they bought the horse two years ago.
The Open Maiden for 5,6 & 7 year olds was won in good style by Karshaan who won going away by 8 lengths under Jonathon Jarrett to beat Exhuberance by 8 lengths. Aldhelm stayed on well to finish a further 4 lengths away. The winner is trained Nr Cheltenham by Ali Lindler who was recording only her second ever winner. Winning owner Martin Seymour was not at the course to greet his winner as he was on holiday in Portugal.
The opening Members race was expected to be a formality for the Gary Hanmer trained Noble Persian, the 2-5 on favourite had to settle for second best under Brian Linehan, as he was beaten fair and square by three parts of a length by King Killone under a very enterprising ride from Harry Challoner. The winner is trained in Mere by Paul Hogarth, the trainer missed seeing the winner as he was on holiday in Portugal as well.