As the sun set on the last day of the NH season at Sandown it was the return of the flat here at my local with a marathon eight race card on what was a sunny but also windy and chilly afternoon in the north west.
It’s fair to say that after spending the past seven months or so looking at hurdlers and chasers today was a case of first day back at school syndrome with getting used to working out the quality of unexposed 3yo and seasoned handicappers.
This afternoons card consisted of six handicaps and a couple of maiden events so a nice way to slowly ease into the new season.
1.20 Paul Merson Sportsman’s Dinner 27th May Hcap,Class 5,1m,4yo+ (0-70) (Div 1)
Not the highest quality start to the new season but it began with a well timed ride from top apprentice Oisin Murphy on 5yo Cravat who made good headway to comfortably defeat the running on Docofthebay in second place,favorite Ewell Place was third.
Cravat is back in form and off this run could do with going up in trip,he won well enough and should add to this as the season goes on.
1.50 The 80’s Music Night Here 21st June Hcap,Class 5,1m,4yo+ (0-70) (Div2)
The second division of the first race but under a different title.
A second win of he year for the 4yo Reggie Bond who took over the lead just before the last furlong and kept up to his work,he was two lengths ahead of Prince Of Burma, Kyllachy Star plugged on for third after a poor start.
Reggie Bond is in good heart winning here off 62,he can still improve from this and the blinkers are clearly having the desired effect on him.
2.20 £25 Free Bet At corbettsports.com Hcap,Class 2,7f,4yo+ (0-105)
Some old favourites and popular ones lined up in what looked a competitive contest.
They went a decent clip set by favourite Big Johnny D who rattled up a hat trick last year but approaching 2f out he was headed by the pack and went back through the field.
Glen Moss took over and battled on well under Sean Levey to land the spoils from the staying on Louis The Pious by 0.75 lengths,Newstead Abbey got the third prize while the eyecatching run for me was from Balty Boys who has a race in him,could be worth trying him over 1m at some point.
Glen Moss did well here,winning off his runners up mark of 96 from Kempton last weekend and could come back here at the end of May for the John O’Gaunt over the same CD,Louis The Pious is probably better at 6f, last years Ayr Gold Cup runner up seems to come to form in July.
2.55 Watch Racing UK On Sky Channel 432 Maiden,Class 5,1m4f,3yo+
A bloodless success for the 3yo filly Talmada who travelled well to give second favourite Galuppi a seven length beating.
Holding an Oaks entry it’s possible she could end up at one of the trials at Chester or Lingfield before taking up her entry but she is a nice looking
prospect for trainer Roger Varian who will be looking to get some Black Type with her during the summer.
Galuppi is now qualified for handicaps as is Norab while back in last place Market Storm who is already a gelding will end up over hurdles I expect
3.25 Best Odds Guaranteed At corbettsports.com Hcap,Class 2,1m,4yo+ (0-105)
A real wide open looking contest which was taken by a commentators nightmare in Yourartisonfire who ran on well in the last half furlong under Joey Haynes to get the better of the Jamie Spencer ridden Gabrial’s Kaka who was staying on well in the last furlong to try and follow up his recent win in the Spring Cup at Newbury a fortnight ago.
They were very well stretched out here,Yourartisonfire is a good early type and winning here off 83 he could end up being aimed possibly at the Royal Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot, Gabrial’s Kaka like the winner is a 4yo who looks to going the right way and personally I’d send him up to 1m2f in time.
4.00 Bet At corbettsports.com Maiden Fillies Stakes,Class 5,1m,3yo+
A real shocker hear for the punters but delight for the bookies as 50-1 debutant Belle De Lawers sleuce up to take the scalp of some of the more bigger yards here,making good headway down the straight she led with just over a furlong to go and ran on to beat Isabella Bird by eight lengths,Song Of Norway was plugging on into third and now qualifies for handicaps.
Debutant Elshaadin was fifth and will learn from this and her future will be over trips from 1m2f and over.
As for Belle De Lawers she is related to former Lincoln winner Hunters Of Brora so 1m races should be where her future lies.
4.35 Follow @HaydockRaces on Twitter Handicap,Class 5,1m,3yo (0-75)
An easy win for Alquimia here who won on her second start for trainer Richard Fahey in the famous colours of Sir Robert Ogden,racing off a rating of 67 she came here off the back of a recent blowout at Redcar and she is much better than this rating so could be turned out again before the handicapper notices her.
Runner up was handicap debutant Ghinia who stayed on well and clearly has ability and third spot went to Frankie on Bridie French who had a tricky old time on this filly who reared in the parade ring then went to the 1m4f start as she came out on to the course before Frankie moved her to the rail and took her down steady.
Below Alquimia coming back in.
5.10 Bet On Your Mobile At corbettsports.com Handicap,Class 4,1m2f 95yds,4yo+ (0-80)
The sort of race where if you hadn’t backed a winner all the day then this was not going to help you win it back.
It may have been the last day of the jumps season but it was a race which went to the name Carberry, not Paul or Nina but the new kid on the block in Megan who is currently attached to the Brian Ellison stable and having her first year riding in Britain, she got her hat trick on Memory Cloth who made it three from three this season under a real drive to just get the better of Syncopate by a neck in a pulsating finish.
Memory Cloth is in the form of his life at the moment and gets on well with Megan who won on him on the first day of the season at Doncaster,they have an apprentice race over 1m4f next weekend so connections could be tempted to turn him out again.
Megan may have the surname Carberry but boy can she ride a horse,if she is not involved in the race for Champion Apprentice then I will be shocked.
Below,Yours truly with Megan Carberry pre race
A fair start to the new season then,it’s always tricky changing codes but today was a more than useful transition.
Next week I shall be off Saturday evening racing in Doncaster which should make for a nice night out.
Today’s racing was ok but you can’t peak too soon, May has some quality flat racing at Haydock,this afternoon was a case of dusting off the cobwebs.
Until next weekend thanks for reading.