Sam Twiston Davies was the star of the show with three winners as jumps racing returned to Hereford since the closure in December 2016.
The first was for his guvnor and champion trainer Paul Nichollls on Coillte Lass in the 2m5f Mares’ Novices Hurdle,a winner of an Irish point in April she jumped ok but not fluently and will be seen to full effect when she goes chasing but she made all here and looks decent enough,she finished over four lengths ahead of Lost In Lecce who should find picking up a small race no problem.
After that Belmount for his father Nigel in the feature Silver Salver Chase over 3m1f duly obliged,sitting off the pace he went on with a couple of fences left,only a 7yo he has shown consistency over fences and could be aimed at the Southern National next month or one of the big three mile chases at Cheltenham in a couple of weeks time, after that Little Pop put in a good round of jumping to land the 2m Chase with relative ease,only his third start over fences he has plenty to offer and should pay his way
The day’s opener was won by Rather Be in the EBF Novice Hurdle Qualifier over 2m for Nicky Henderson and Andrew Tinkler,always going well he won a race that he was entitled to do so on his bumper form,he should get further in time and was seven lengths clear from The Blue Bomber who ran a sound race and should do better when handicapping.
Emerging Force ran out an impressive winner of the 2m5f Beginners’ Chase, a useful staying hurdler last season for Harry Whittington who was cruelly dealt the most awful post ending to a Grade One win when Arzal lost his life after winning the Manifesto at Aintree a few weeks later, Emerging Force should make into a good chaser after this and could turn up at Cheltenham for one of the novice chases at The Showcase meeting
Handicap debutant Furiously Fast looks to have a good season ahead after scoring in the 2m handicap hurdle,going in off 110 for trainer Dai Burchell he won like a winner ahead of his mark,top weight Octagon came second after making most of the running while Satanic Beat ran another consistent race to be third.
The finale was a 3m1f Maiden Hurdle won in easy style by the Charlie Mann stable under Noel Fehily, being moved up to this trip has been the making of him,he could go to Cheltenham for a 3m novice race unless he goes into a handicap,he is more than capable of holding his own.
Roc D’Apsis,7yo trained by Tom George didn’t quite seem to stay the three miles here but is one to watch out for when dropped back to 2m4f.
Daklondoke,4yo trained by David Pipe showed something to suggest a step up in trip when going into a handicap will be much better for this former pointer.