by Dom Bradshaw

There were surprises in store at Sunday’s South Wold meeting at Brocklesby Park, with two favourites turned over at long odds-on.

The first "shock" came in the Confined, where the improving Dalus Park (Joe Docker) was backed as though defeat was not in question. On this occasion, it was not to be his day as he was ridden a long way from home, finishing a never nearer third. The race went to the quirky Floruceva, ridden by James Tate and trained by the rider his brother Richard, who consented to start after two recent mulish performances. Some credit must go to the starter, M.Burt Esq, who was very patient with the mare and allowed her to join the rest of the field after she’d been playing up at the back. James Tate took the race by the horns, taking the 12-year-old mare to the front and he stayed there, repelling the late challenge of Via De La Valle (Lucy Coney).
Some “shrewdies” on course waited until Floruceva had started before parting with their money and were duly rewarded with a very generous price of 25/1.
This might be the final time we see Floruceva on the track, as there’s a possibility that she might be covered soon. If this is the case, I hope that any of her future offspring inherit her ability and not her brains!
Via De La Valle ran his usual game race and his rider is learning all of the time. It’ll not be long before he’s winning in this company.
I’d be surprised if there wasn’t an excuse for the favourite, as he usually travels very well in his races. This run should be disregarded.
Deel Quay (Mark Chatterton) ran up to his mark in fourth and deserves a small success.

Odds-on backers got a few quid back off the bookies in the Ladies Open with Upham Lord (Jill Dawson) taking his fifth race the season with relative ease. His task was made a lot easier when Indie Rock ran out three from home when looking dangerous, unseating the unfortunate Fiona Needham in the process. Would he have beaten the favourite? We’ll never know, but if he’s back to anywhere near his best, he should win a Ladies race or two this season.
Lucky Ross (Fiona Hatfield) put in his best performance of the season so far to finish a never dangerous second with River Unshion (Gemma Hutchinson) back in third.

Just when punters thought that normality had returned, they were once again shot down in flames in the Mens Open where the long odds-on favourite Private Pete (James Oldring) could only finish a disappointing third.
The race went to Stinging Bee, a maiden winner in 2000, who was given an uncharacteristically positive ride by Nick Bell, coming home clear of Paddington Jones (Nick Kent). This was a vast improvement on any form that the 11-year-old had previously shown, and though I have criticised his jockey in the past, he deserves credit for his ride here. This was a weak race by Open standards, but he stands a chance of following up in lesser company.
Paddington Jones demonstrated that his close second at Dalton Park last week was no fluke and he should be a “good thing” for restricted success.
The favourite, like Dalus Park in the Confined, was never travelling. This is not his true form and this run should be written off.

Burton maiden winner Bedtime Boys (Joe Docker) followed up in restricted company at the first time of asking, coming home strongly in front of the remainder, which was headed by Emperor’s Son (2nd - Serena Brotherton), Gale Damage (3rd – Richard Armson) and Step Lively (4th – Stephen Swiers).
The winner, a grey 5-year-old son of Gran Alba, was previously in the care of Caroline Bailey, but now belongs to Miss M. Samworth and is trained by Antonia Bealby. Miss Samworth has a very nice prospect here and he looks to have a future under rules.
The 2nd, 3rd and 4th finished in a heap, so it’s hard to say how solid the form is, but all three should be more than capable of scoring in this company, especially Step Lively, who did his rider no favours most of the way round and ran in snatches.

Ababou (Steve Charlton) readily took the 5, 6 & 7-year-old maiden from favourite Corrie Mor (Simon Walker), the pair a long way clear of Mighty Rising (Chris Cundall) and Steppes (Richard Tate) in third and fourth.
The winner had put in an impressive run on his debut behind Fine Times at the Burton meeting and showed that his Garthorpe run next time (pulled up) was all wrong. He’s a good jumper, has a nice turn of foot and can progress, starting with a restricted.

The runner up (Corrie Mor) gave no trouble in the paddock this time (had played up in his previous two starts), but appeared to be given a slightly too much to do by Simon Walker and could never get to the winner. It looks as though connections now have the key to him and he should be winning in maiden company very soon.
The third and fourth are moderate, but both should have chances of a small success.
Fryup Digital (Simon Brisby) ran well for a long way, but may have stamina problems.
The 6-year-old The Rising Scot (E. Lineham) ran a reasonable enough race on his debut and looks at have some ability.

The final race of the day, the 8-year-olds and upwards maiden went to the front running grey, Its-On-The-Cards. The winner, according to the race card “lacks stamina”, but you wouldn’t have known and he could be identified as the winner a long way from home. This was a well deserved success for owner\rider Rachel Atkinson and she should be praised for “having a go”. If the horse is good enough to step up in grade is another matter, but I didn’t think that he could win a maiden, so who knows?