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23rd January 2005
by Arthur Thompson
photos by Grace Beresford

The meeting went ahead after a 7.30am inspection, but after a look at the course, some trainers turned the horsebox around and left for home. The going was good/firm in places.

The meeting got underway with the two runner Members race, which saw Decent Bond go off as favourite with the ex-French hurdler, Floritchel being the only other starter. It was Indian file for most of the race until the climb to the last three fences where Floritchel took the up the running to make a winning start to his pointing career.

Hunt members
Floritchel (Tom Oates) jump the last ahead of the only other runner Decent Bond (Mark Thompson)

Decent Bond and Mark Thompson chase home Floritchel


The Restricted featured Cottenham winners Cmewin (looked a picture in the ring) and Lord Saar, with the money going down on the latter. Lord Lambrini took them along with Cmewin close behind and Lord Saar in midfield. Going down the back for the final time, Cmewin appeared to drop away and with Lord Saar making headway to the front, he looked the winner from three out. However, Mark Walford somehow got Cmewin running again and quickly made ground on Lord Saar, who had enough to hold on. Third placed Knock Davron ran well and should be better next time.

Seventeen were entered for the Ladies Open, but it was made into a farce with Royal Castle walking over.

The Mens Open had five runners. Emperor Ross was a short priced favourite and won like one. The runner up, Just Barney Boy, should pick up a race this season, as should third placed Gaultier Gale.
Who Dare Wins was pulled up after crossing the line and Lee Bates jumped off, but I can report that everything is ok with the horse.

Jockey Chris Callow winner of the mens open on Emperor Ross, about to be legged up by Tony Dobbin

Just Barney Boy (Adam Waugh) from Who Dares Wins (Lee Bates) ahead of eventual winner Emperor Ross in the men's open

Winner of the men's open Emperor Ross and Chris Callow jump the last ahead of Just Barney Boy

The Confined Race went to Swiftway, beating Supreme Day.
One to look out for is Just Whiskey who ran in snatches, but put in some good late work.

L to R Supreme Day (Clive Storey), Roman Lord (Ronan Brown) centre and evetual winner Swiftway (Luke Morgan) in the confined race

Division One of the 2m4f Maiden (5, 6 & 7yos) saw Birkwood come through to take the race after Tsuki  fell at the last. Knysna Belle took second, with Red Rose Dixie not far behind in third. The faller, Tsuki, was unlucky as she looked the winner when coming down.

L to R Knysna Belle (Chris Gillon), Tsuki (H Fowler) and winner Birkwood (Ronan Brown) at the last in the 1st division of the maiden

Dark Diva took Division Two, with Zesta Fiesta back in second.

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