Midlands Pointing moved to Dingley for the first time this season for the Woodland Pytchley’s annual East Saturday renewal.
Frustratingly for organisers who had been up all night working on the course, the fabulous weather and loyal support of a large crowd were not rewarded with the declarations they deserved on the day.
There was a double for Sophie Walker, tripling her wins to date, and a very eventful Ladies Open which gave Claire Angus her maiden winner.
Sadly the maidens were the most affected by poor declarations. The young horse maiden, second on the card, resulted in a walkover victory for Sophie Walker with First Class Ticket, while the final race of the day did not produce any runners.
First Class Ticket turned out again for the Ladies Open, along with three other runners. This time, though, it was Kate Gowing and Shamat that appeared to have the race sewn up approaching the last, only to have a dramatic refusal, sending Kate onto the fence. The GeeGeez GeeGee (Claire Angus) managed to avoid Shamat and jump the fence but lost speed in the process. Ar Fheabhas Ar Fad and Lucinda Ticehurst were catching up fast and very nearly caught the on the line, losing only be a head. Claire Angus said, “I’ve just had a telling off [from the Stewards] and I completely deserve it. I looked back the wrong side and didn’t hear her coming because of the crowd noise. I won’t be making that mistake again.” Claire, who broke her shoulder on her last visit to Dingley, hunts “Gee” with the Bicester during the winter months.
The Mens Open which followed this was a good race, despite only having two starters. This was no gentle canter as a good pace was set, Pair of Jacks (George Greenock) made much of the running while Dale Peters and Dido sat in behind, always within a couple of lengths. When Dido made his move there was little Pair of Jacks could do to respond and the former pulled away well to record a 12-length victory. “He loves the sun on his back,” Peters said afterwards. Owner Bob Fox has been a loyal owner to both Dale and his Father, and was delighted to be present for this victory, having missed the recent Guilsborough win.
The opening race, a members race for Woodland Pytchley and Fernie members and subscribers, was won by Ben Bromley and Done A Runner who pulled away from Rudolf (Serena Tacy), despite a few hair-raising jumping moments. This was the 15th winner in point-to-points for owner Toby Hunt.
The PPORA Club Members Race for Novice Riders provided the second half of Sophie Walker’s double, this time with Gill Duckworth and Pat Dry’s Toby Lerone. This was one of the best finishes of the day, with According to Dan (S. Bazeley) pushing the Stuart Morris-trained winner all the way, to lose by just a length at the line.
Finally, the Restricted Race became a head-to-head between Wah Wah Taysee (Kate Gowing) and Spring Cover (Alex Vaughan-Jones) who tracked each other for two laps before the Gerald Bailey-trained seven-year-old Spring Cover was able to pull way and win by five lengths in the run-in.
The Easter weekend is packed with point-to-point fixtures around the country and the Midlands area is no exception. We move North to the Thorpe Lodge, just outside Newark, for the traditional South Notts Easter Monday meeting.
Results from Dingley
Race 1 – Members
1st DONE A RUNNER (B. W. Bromley) 1/10F
1st RUDOLF (Serena Tacy) 3/1
Race 2 – Open Maiden
1st FIRST CLASS TICKET (Sophie Walker)
Race 3 – Ladies Open
1st THE GEEGEEZ GEEGEE (Claire Angus) 4/5F
2nd AR FHEABHAS AR FAD (Lucinda Ticehurst) 10/1
Race 4 – Mens Open
1st DIDO (Dale Peters) 2/7F
2nd PAIR OF JACKS (George Greenock) 6/4
Race 5 – Novice Riders
1st TOBY LERONE (Sophie Walker) 13/8
2nd ACCORDING TO DAN (Steven Bazeley) 2/5F
Race 6 – Restricted
1st SPRING COVER (Alex Vaughan-Jones) 4/7F
2nd WAH WAH TAYSEE (Kate Gowing) 4/1