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College Valley and North Northumberland at ALNWICK
Sunday 18th February 2001
by David Scott (Pointer of the Northumberland Gazette)

Last Sunday saw a marathon 10 race card when the College Valley and North Northumberland hunts held their meeting at Ratcheugh. The meeting suffered a 30-minute delay when the Paramedics failed to arrive at the course on time but the wait was well worth it when the first race delivered an exciting finish. Alsina under Tom Oates and Don Carlos assisted by Luke Morgan were locked together up the home straight with the outcome unclear until the last 50 yards when Alsina finally got the upper hand to score by ½ length. Tarajan ran a fair race back in third having been ridden well off the pace and could well improve for this.

The PPORA Members race ½ an hour later was equally exciting. Dun Rose with Sandy Forster up was prominent throughout but several were queuing up to have a crack at the Mare. Little Brockwell came with a determined challenge and Mr Goodbye under novice rider Charlie Shirley-Beavan was looming up looking the winner. Dun Rose is nothing if not game and a great leap at the last coupled with a slower jump by Mr Goodbye settled the issue and the mare battled on to land the spoils from Mr Goodbye and Little Brockwell who will improve for the run.

The restricted saw the closest finish of the day. Go Nomadic was up in the van from a long way out but course winner Arctic Star under Mark Thompson came cantering upsides at the second last. By the last however the distress signals were going out from Arctic Star and Go Nomadic was reeling him in by the stride. In a driving finish Arctic Star held on by a diminishing short head. Border Glory was a distant third with Commanche Scout running a fair race back in fourth.

Riparius and Pauline Robson easily disposed of Rainbow Times in the Ladies race. Taking up the running before three out this one was simply too classy for a field devoid of Balisteros, a winner at the Sinnington on Saturday.

Noble Hymn ably partnered by Clive Mulhall always had too many guns for What A Fiddler up the home straight in the Intermediate. Royal Pass ran a nice comeback race in third and this form could work out to be quite useful. I expect all three to land more races this season.

The Mens Open saw the well backed Makin Doo collar long time leader Fiscal Policy before three out and run on strongly to complete a double for Clive Mulhall. The runner up ran a game race but had no answer to the winners turn of foot. Just For Ger was running a race full of promise when taking a heavy fall at the last. This one had a little form in Ireland under rules and if the fall does not affect his confidence he has prospects of picking a race up in the not too distant future.

Geordies Express ran on to be third and will be better for the run.

The Mares maiden fell to Lady Persia who showed the benefit of her run at the last meeting when coming home a distance clear of Solway Saffy and Wynyard Dancer. The last named was given a lot to do and is probably capable of better. Si Celia looked booked for second until departing at the second last but this was a promising racecourse debut and compensation awaits.

In division 1 of the Maiden Carries Gift provided a first ever winner for Lynsey Kendall when proving too strong for Kimothy and Cool Kevin. The winner was showing vastly improved form as indeed was the runner up and it remains to be seen how strong this form is.

Division 2 fell to Cloney Boy and Andrew Richardson. The pair collared Looking Forward at the last and sprinted away for an easy success. Kirkharle ran on strongly to deprive the rapidly tiring Looking Forward of second close home. The third is only 5 and will improve on this.

The concluding race saw Jolly Minster and Peter Atkinson stay on too strongly for Count Keni and Pure Steel. The winner was finally gaining reward for a series of placed efforts. The second had poor form under rules but ran well enough here to suggest he may be capable of landing a Maiden while the patiently ridden third could also improve on this.


1 Alsina T Oates 10/1
2 Don Carlos   7/4 fav
3 Tarajan 16/1
½ len, 3 len 15 ran
PPORA Members
1 Dun Rose Miss S Forster 7/1
2 Mr Goodbye   10/1
3 Little Brockwell 7/4 fav
2 len, 21/2 len 14 ran
1 Arctic Star M Thompson 8/1
2 Go Nomadic   12/1
3 Border Glory 20/1
Sh hd, Dist 17 ran
1 Riparius Miss P Robson Evens fav
2 Rainbow Times   4/1
3 Nosmo King 20/1
10 len, 20 len 9 ran
1 Noble Hymn C Mulhall 5/2
2 What A Fiddler   Evens fav
3 Royal Pass 9/1
2 len, 8 len 10 ran
1 Makin Doo C Mulhall 3/1
2 Fiscal Policy   5/2 fav
3 Geordies Express 6/1
4 len, 4 len 15 ran
Mares Maiden
1 Lady Persia S Huggins 3/1
2 Solway Saffy   5/2 fav
3 Wynyard Dancer 5/1
Dist, 1 len 14 ran
Maiden Div 1
1 Carries Gift Miss L Kendall 33/1
2 Kimothy   20/1
3 Cool Kevin 8/1
21/2 len, 12 len 14 ran
Maiden Div 2
1 Cloney Boy A Richardson 20/1
2 Kirkharle   5/1
3 Looking Forward 8/1
7 len, Neck 15 ran
Maiden Div 3
1 Jolly Minster P Atkinson 4/1
2 Count Keni   16/1
3 Pure Steel 4/1
4 len, 4 len 12 ran