By Emma Forman
The annual Brocklesby point to point races, a highlight of the sporting and social calendar in Lincolnshire, take place this Saturday at Brocklesby Park by kind permission of the Earl and Countess of Yarborough. 96 entries have been take for a 7 race card starting at noon. With fine weather forecast all week, the going is likely to be “good” by Saturday. A team of volunteers have been busy getting the course ready and the new fences are complete with up to date white guard rails bringing them in line with racing under national hunt rules.
The first race on the card, the Grimsby Roofing Services sponsored Brocklesby, Burton and South Wold Members race, has 4 entries. Sovereign Gold, who may line up for Ben and Rebecca Atkins, is the highest rated horse. She won 3 point to points in Ireland before being placed on the track for Henry De Bromhead. Since crossing the Irish sea, Sovereign Gold has been placed second in a point to point at Dunsmore and may be the pick here. Star Present is owned by John Cottingham, he has been fourth in a Maiden at Alnwick already this year and his Malton trainer / rider Jack Teal was in form with a winner at Duncombe Park on Sunday. Tom Strawson has Asandwhenyouwant set to make his racecourse debut. This eight-year-old may be an unknown quantity but is from the family of Sounds Like Fun who was a 9-time winner for Henrietta Knight. The quartet of entries is completed by Sommervieu, a maiden and restricted winner trained by Simon Robinson at Linwood, who has been off the track since the COVID pandemic struck.
Clark Weightman are sponsoring the PPROA Conditions race for which 19 entries have been taken. Jack Teal may take the mount on either Braavos or Hi Murphy for Grainthorpe farmer Mike Dawson; either of these horses would be popular winners with the local crowd but also hold entries later on the card. Gina and Tom Ellis who completed a treble in the Midlands area at Garthorpe on Sunday, look set for a busy afternoon once again. Here they may run Bawnmore who will have to defy a 3 lbs. penalty. The same can be said for Dawnie Boy for Bradley Gibbs; the winner of a conditions race in December, will need to bring his jumping A game if he is to feature at Brocklesby. David Kemp may bring How To Get Away from his East Anglia stable, he should also be one for the short list. However, possibly the one they all have to beat is decisive Sheriff Hutton winner Tom Cody from Cherry Coward’s Yorkshire stable.
The Mixed Open race has a large entry of 20 and is sponsored by Baillie Haylage. Cherry Coward may choose to run Tom Cody here or Ballydonagh Boy; he has also been in form so far this time. Dale Peters should fill a place with The Unmentionable who finished a good second to Black Op at Sheriff Hutton. General Arrow or Kalabaloo may represent the Ellis stable and Just Your Type also deserves a mention. However, the race could go the way of Envious Editor who has won 3 times this season for Joe O’ Shea including an easy victory in a Hunter Chase at Taunton last month.
The largest entry of the day is for the DDM Agriculture 8 year olds and over Conditions race which has attracted 23 horses. Cool Desire for Alice and John Dawson will be suited by the predicted good ground. One For Billy has a 10lbs penalty to carry if he lines up for Alex Dunn and both Mammoth and The New Kid have been in form recently.
The Restricted race, sponsored by Brigg Office Supplies has 9 entries. Revesby maiden winner Walkonthewildside bids to follow up here. To be successful however, he will have to beat Latenightrumble from the Tom Ellis stable. This horse is a half-brother to the 2022 Aintree Foxhunters winner Lightnightpass and can be expected to progress through the ranks following a maiden win at Alnwick. Bestfriend Barnaby should run into a place for Caroline Robinson.
There are 2 maiden races to complete the card, the first of which is the Jockey Club Mares and Fillies maiden which has 7 entries. Chabichou Dupoitou could possibly be the winner here. She is a homebred horse owned by Grand National winning owner Robert Waley Cohen and has some placed form under rules when trained by Philip Hobbs last year. Alternative options include Grenadine Save and Super Dawn who both have place form in point to points.
The concluding open maiden has 14 entries and is being sponsored by Nunns Isuzu. The Ellis stable may be represented by Iskander Pecos who cost 33 000 Euros from the Derby sale in 2021 and was fourth on his debut. The Ellis team also have another 5-year-old Lord Pethers entered. This horse is far more exposed having been disappointing under rules for Dan Skelton prior to joining the pointing ranks. Alan Hill may run point to point bumper winner Ilhela d’ Engilbert and Fran Poste’s grey Pocatello who was placed second at Sheriff Hutton is another to note.
There is an award for the leading rider on the day, kindly sponsored by Glenbrook Advisors and a cash prize for the best turned out in each race has been sponsored by Singleton Birch.
Brocklesby Park can be accessed via the B1210 close to Humberside Airport. Admission is £13 if tickets are ordered in advance from www.midlandspointing.com/tickets or £15 on the day. (Cash or Card) Under 16’s are free. There will be a good range of food outlets and trade stands and the party will continue in the bar after racing.