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Sunday 29th January 2006

by Liam Hale

Harris rumbles it up with three

Ready To Rumble was the first leg of a treble for jockey Neil Harris and trainer Jeremy Scott to keep up the pairs good start to the season. The eleven year old gelding pulled up on his first run this term seemed to find extra stamina reserves to see off the admirable Polar Champ who had to settle for second. The winner took it up four out and ran on well to the line under the capable Harris drive.

The winner has been somewhat fragile and seemed sore behind after the race. If he can be kept sound the owner/trainer/jockey team seem to have another capable open horse alongside their stable star, County Derry, who was a winner last weekend.

The next leg of the treble came in division one of the maiden on Scott’s Osokenda. The mare had shown little in two bumper races in 2005 but was an easy winner in a race where many of the chasers capitulated behind, leaving the mare to finish well ahead of the only other finisher Phantom Walker (Darren Edwards). The winner didn’t break sweat and looks well capable of stepping up on this effort.

An even easier and eventful success completed the hat trick in division three of the maiden. Favourite Southwestern was left well clear early on the second circuit when main market rivals Maxou Des Brosses (Michael Miller) fell and badly hampered Double chasing Marc Barber on the grey Onlybegoneanhour. The grey then seemed to run off the course and was pulled up by Barber. That left Southwestern well clear from his other two rivals leaving newcomers Double Pops (Ryan Bliss) and Richway (Joe Price) to fight it out for second with the former narrowly getting that vote, but more than a distance behind the easy winner. The winner, who had shown promise in a three mile hurdle race, was the easiest winner of the day and looks well capable of stepping up in grade in the future after this confidence boosting run. As stand in last race commentator Tom Malone, Martin Pipe’s conditional, put it Southwestern won in a “hack canter”.

The Jeremy Scott team are in tremendous form at present and runners over the coming weeks must be followed, with today’s maiden winners looking capable of stepping up in grade.

Lucy Gardner was also in double form, easily taking the three-runner members race on Tyre Hill Lilly and then later on Tsars Twist in the Intermediate.

The first two fences were omitted in the opener where the nine year old mare was hesitant going to post but not returning as she easily caught the free running Millenio (Guy Weatherley) to coast home from the then eased Millenio. This was Millenio’s first jumps outing and at times his jumps looked hesitant and he pulled hard, but the powerful Ollie Jackson should get a win out of this former German flat winner. The winner who broke her maiden in 2005 looks in good heart and can build upon this success.

Tsars Twist was another maiden winner for the Gardner team in 2005 and was prominent throughout in the Intermediate to out battle Gregory Peckory (Ranald Morgan) with some promising types in behind. Gregory Peckory joined the front running Tsar’s twist four out but was out battled by Lucy Gardner who galvanised Tsars Twist after the last.

The Gardner team are another to have a good start to the 2006 and order of the day is to strike while the iron is hot.

The ladies race went to welsh raider Twilight Dancer and Isabel Thompsett who had the mare handy throughout to battle on to beat Gudlage (Vanessa Shaw) who looked to have the race won when going on four out only to be out battled by four lengths with a further three back to the ever consistent Sandy Duff.

Twilight Dancer, trained by permit holder Helen Roberts, had won three times in 2005 before finishing third in a Worcester handicap hurdle, looks capable of stepping up again in 2006 under her capable rider Isabel Thompsett who does well with her limited opportunities.

Sandy Duff is probably better than the bare result as the rider had tack problems and should be winning again soon for owner/rider Mary McCarthy. Lucy Bridges took a nasty fall in front of the stands, first time around, on Marilyn Scudamore’s Lincoln place. She was later taken to Exeter hospital and hopefully all is well.

The novice rider’s race saw the first success for Michael Scudamore, son of Peter, son on Fiesty Frosty who battled on well to deny recent Barbury castle winner Scuttlebrook (Freddy de Giles). The winner, trained by the jockeys mother, looked to be playing second fiddle to Scuttlebrook when that rival took the inside rail before the last but the Scudamore mare battled back strongly to regain the lead and score by one and a half lengths with another Scudamore horse in third, Selassie (C. Wallis). Michael looked competent in the saddle, second ride and first win, and did not panic when Scuttlebrook, who had made endless ground on the second circuit, took the lead just before the last.

The winner and the second look capable of continuing there good heart and others to take from the race include No Way A Lady (Nick Scholfield) who on only her third ever run fell when going well in behind the leaders on the second circuit. Scholfield suffered a broken collarbone form the incident but the partnership should be able to make amends.

Division two of the maiden saw Marc Barbers first success as a trainer, based at Dai Rees’s yard Pembrokeshire yard, with John Storm who battled on strongly to beat the slow starting Fille Détente (Charlotte Tizzard). With the recent resurgence of Welsh based trainers Barber and his string have benefited from his partnership with Dai Rees. The eight year old gelding had shown ability in Irish point to points and should perform consistently around the welsh area. The second gave the winner all of forty lengths at the start, a trait shown under rules for Pam Sly, but the mare battled on well to be closest at the finish, a mares/maiden race looks within her compass if her starting issues can be resolved.

Horses to Follow

Future Maiden winner
Fille Detente

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