Midlands Pointing finally restarted with the Revesby Races meeting on Monday 29th March.
The team at Revesby Park deserve great praise for hosting a superbly organised and slick meeting with all the added complications and expenses of COVID security and no spectators to entertain. Many thanks to all involved with putting the meeting on, in particular to Sally Spink for showing other meetings how it can be done.
Many thanks also to the Wiggins-Davies family for allowing the fixture to take place on their land. The meeting featured eight races with entries from far and wide and took place under beautiful blue skies.
We began the day with the Intermediate race with eight runners. The livestream pundits had all singled out Benefaktor, the mount of Jack Andrews, in the ring in the build up. The horse won here in January of last year under Jack’s sister Gina, but she had made the decision to go to Charing today so Jack was left in charge. In charge he was, too, as he was a very impressive winner here again. Tracked by Occupied (J. Turner) and Spring Cover (T. Steele) but never really challenged, the irish-bred gelding pulled away with half a lap to go and won easily for the owners, which include Jack’s Father Simon and Clerk of the Course Brian Crawford among their number. Harmoney Row (A. Chadwick) was a distant second, Clondaw Bunny (O. Puffett) was third.
The front running in The Melvyn Leach Memorial Maiden race was done by Dale Peters aboard How To Get Away, who did not give up the lead for most of the first two and half laps, when The Bonny Boy (S. Lee) and The Whistle Blower (G. Chatterton) hit the front. At the third last, The Whistle Blower ducked out through a wing, unseating George Chatterton and leaving Sam Lee and The Bonny Boy clear of the Fan Club Aulmes (Alice Stevens) and How To Get Away (Dale Peters).
We only had three starters for The Skinner’s sponsored Ladies Open, next on the card. The trio travelled as a pack fo the first two thirds of the race with Allblack Des Places (Miss I. Robinson) seemingly setting the pace. Sadly, the only finisher of the three was Flintham, the mount of Lily Bradstock. Allblack de Places and Theatre Evening (Miss M. Micklewright) were pulled up.
The D & M Barthorpe Ltd. Men’s Open provided us with a fabulous finish. Rio Bravo and Bradley Gibbs led most of the race, shadowed by Ardview Boy (D. KItts) early on, then Just Cause (R. Stearn) on the third lap. Stearn made his move on the downhill stretch to the second last, landing ahead and pulling clear. Just Cause then cleared the last two lengths clear but Gibbs and Rio Bravo weren’t finished yet and rode a determined finish. Viewers on the line couldn’t say for certain but the confirmation came and the race was awarded to long time leader Rio Bravo and Bradley Gibbs by a neck. Third place went to Black Valentine (W. Thirlby), a long way back.
The Print Concern Supports The NHS Restricted race also provided great racing, most of the field being separated by only eight to ten lengths as they approached the last fence. Various horses led the race at different times, but most of the running was provided by gutsy mare Cave Queen (L. Humphrey) and Black Jasper (J. Andrews). A length separated these two over the last before Andrews was able to pull away to record his double on the day with Black Jasper.
Jack said, “we were really hoping for a good run today, after a disappointing one last time out. Very pleased.”
The final jump race of the day was the Retraining of Racehorses and The Jockey Club Conditions Race for veteran horses of 9-years-old and over. Trojan Star (T. Steele) led the field around the first lap with Summer Sounds on his shoulder. The latter, with Alice Stevens in the plate for Francesca Nimmo, then took over and dominated the second. Newsworthy and Dale Peters were stalking and moved to the front with three to jump, with Ballinure and Jack Andrews in pursuit. Newsworthy’s move had been perfectly timed, however, and there was no catching last year’s winner as they pulled way after the last.
We concluded the day with two point-to-point flat races for four, five and six-year-old horses, run over two miles. The first of these was won by Crews Pitch (Z. Baker), with Granny Mags (A. Chadwick) in second and Optical Girl (J. Jones) in third. The second race was won by Our Bill’s Aunt (D. Peters) with Here Comes Henry (F. Procter) and Calling London (A. Chadwick) in third.
Once again, we would like to thank the organising team at Revesby for all their hard work and congratulate them on an excellent day’s racing.
The Midlands season continues on Easter Monday at Dingley where the hosts will be the Pytchley with Woodland. Will connections please note that the land owner has requested that the course is not walked until Saturday 4pm to avoid any unnecessary COVID risks.