South Notts at Thorpe Lodge – 28th March – preview

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by Emma Forman

The popular Easter Monday Point- to- Point hosted by the South Notts at Thorpe Lodge takes place this Monday 28th March. A six race card starts at 1pm, the final race is due off at 3.55pm and a Hunt Scurry follows the main action. Highlights include AGA, Connolly’s Red Mills and Subaru Hunter Chase qualifiers.

The first two horses past the post in the feature Triangle Kia Mixed Open race will qualify for the AGA Ladies Open Point- to- Point Final Hunter Chase at Stratford in May. Mr Madeit stands out here; Countess Cathcart’s ten year old is unbeaten in his last four starts in Point- to- Points and won the Intermediate at this meeting last year. His trainer Gerald Bailey is in form and he will take all the beating. Stable companion Thetalkinghorse won the Member’s race on this course in February and has since been second in a Hunter Chase at Leicester; he is entered here too and his jockey Tom McClorey enjoyed a double at the Oakley last week. Another course winner the consistent Popaway won the Ladies race at the Midlands Area Club meeting and Quorn Gold Cup winner Panama Canal is also worth consideration.

Another rider to complete a double last weekend, Tom Chatfield- Roberts may ride She’s Real, the second of his Garthorpe winners in the Cockham Partner’s Intermediate race where the winning horse qualifies for the Connolly’s Red Mills Intermediate Hunter Chase Final at Cheltenham in April. Mares that win in springtime are often worth following and another to consider here is Milemilia, however this Restricted winner is returning from a long absence having missed the 2015 season. Proximo pulled up on his seasonal debut for Stuart Morris’s stable but if he is back to his best should be on the shortlist. The same comment applies to Tommy Morgan’s entry, Tulsa, the winner of a Subaru Restricted and a Member’s race this season and with a drying week forecast the ground should be to his liking. “I have a soft spot for Tulsa; he is really well and an improving six year old. He is a big raw horse who is still quite babyish really and will appreciate quicker ground. We would love to qualify for Cheltenham; it would be a dream to go there.” Confirms Tommy Morgan whose sister Kelly is expected to be in the saddle.

Proximo and Tulsa also have the option of lining up in the opening Frank Key Group Midlands Area Club race. Here they may be taking on Tom Chatfeild- Roberts’ possible mounts the impressive Garthorpe winner L’Eldorado or Love Manhattan who is slowly returning to form after an attack of Colitis last season. Nick and Archie Wright may run Burtredgipandgump a seven year old winner of a Subaru Restricted who has since finished third behind the highly regarded Lilbitluso. Novice rider Rory Bevin has caught the eye this season following his win in the Melton Hunt ride and may partner My Dad’s Horse in this race.

Bevin may also be in action in the Frank Key Group Restricted race, here the winning horse qualifies for the Subaru Restricted Final Hunter Chase at Stratford in May; Bevin may ride Bravehearted Harry. This horse has been placed this season including when third last weekend at Garthorpe and may be able to take this contest. “Bravehearted Harry is a bit of an enigma; he works probably 20lbs better than our other horses at home but sometimes he doesn’t go a yard on the racecourse! However, he really thrives on racing and is in good form.” Says Bevin. Others to consider are the consistent No Alterations who won his Maiden for Victoria Cottingham on this card twelve months ago and Our Milly Acres who has been placed twice in Restricted company since winning at Mares’ Maiden in early February.

No Alterations was part of a treble for Tom Strawson last year and the Midlands Area leading rider will be hoping to ride a winner for local owner/ trainer Roger Jackson. They may team up with Eezbostin in the Brydon Properties Seven Year Olds and Over Maiden. However, Stuart Morris may be able to send out Harodale to go one better than his two second places so far this season in the hands of Jonny Bailey.

Virgo The First was third in a competitive Maiden at Garthorpe behind The Bay Oak and should lose his Maiden tag in the Fernwood Group 4, 5, & 6 year olds Open Maiden.

Entrance is £10 per person with children under 16 free, race cards will be £3. There will be refreshments and trade stands. E- Tickets to include a complimentary race card can be purchased in advance at a cost of £10 from www.midlandspointing.com

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