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Carmarthenshire and Tivyside at Lydstep
Sunday 24th April 2016
by Maria Evans

The Carmarthenshire and Tivyside Point to Point is one jockey John Mathias will remember fondly, with his day opening with his 200th winner between the flags. Qalinas, usually ridden by Wayne Maskill, gave local lad Mathias his 200th winner of his career, after winning the Hunt Members Race easily. Maskill, who got injured in a Hunter Chase during the week, was quick to leg Mathias up on the horse, knowing that it was the horses race to win. Fair Duchess came home five lengths behind in second, with Lost Glory and Ben Jones completing in third.

That was the start of a treble for Mathias, with his next winner coming in the Open Maiden Race onboard Glenteeneasaigh, trained by his partner Amber Griffiths. In an incident packed race, where seven started, and only two finished, Mathias made all on the eight year old gelding, coming home an easy eight lengths in front. The only other finisher was To Hell And Back, under Mark Robinson.

Princess Tina, for trainer David Llewellyn was Mathias' third winner, in the Restricted Race, kindly sponsored by Subaru. It was a well-judged race from the jockey, who sat off the pace until five from home. The departure of Colorado Doc and Byron Moorcroft two out made things easier for the pair, who jumped the last in the lead, to win by two lengths in the end. Ifyouthinkso and Charlotte Evans finished runners up, with Ballet Marbleless and Mark Robinson back in third.

Richard Patrick scored the first double of his career on the day, with Goodnight Charlie and Cygnet both coming home impressive winners. Patrick gave Goodnight Charlie a superb ride, to give trainer Robert Luke his second winner of the season, after a spell of seconditis. It was an inspiring win from the six year old mare, who was only having the first run of her career, for owner breeder Steve Hadley. The tough mare will now go to the Goffs UK Sales at Doncaster.

Cygnet, for Mickey Bowen was a very easy winner of the Novice and Veteran Riders Race, winning by about thirty five lengths in the end. After a troubled season, Bowen was keen to give the horse a confidence booster, and Patrick was the man to help with that.

The Mixed Open, which was ran over two miles and four furlongs, topped off a memorable week for the Gibbs family and owner Claire Sherrif. Having one the Dunraven Bowl at Chepstow with My Coranna, giving jockey Bradley Gibbs his 90th winner between the flags, See U Again Son made relatively easy work of the race, to make it three from three this season. The seven year old was carrying a stone and a half less than second placed Rosies Peacock, making the job a lot easier for the winner than the runner up. This winner puts trainer David Gibbs and owner Claire Sherrif in contention for Leading Small Trainer and Leading Small Owner in the Point to Point Awards.

The last race of the day, which was run over three miles and four furlongs, was won by North George, under Byron Moorcroft. The winner, who is said to be "an out and out stayer" relished the extra trip. It was a one, two in the race for trainer Jonathan Tudor, with Mumbles Pier and Richard Patrick finishing 1½ lengths behind the winner. Mangans Turn and Bradley Gibbs were third.

There isn't long to wait for the next West Wales meeting, with the Banwen Miners hosting on Bank Holiday Monday at Llwyn Ddu, Swansea. First race is off at 1.30pm.

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