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Grove & Rufford
Sunday 2nd March 2008
by Graham Taylor

A good sized crowd enjoyed some exciting racing when the Grove & Rufford Hunt held their annual Point to Point meeting at Welbeck, near Worksop on Sunday.

Avocet Hardware were the sponsors of the opening race, The Confined, of which five horses went to post. This was won by the seven year old South Notts gelding, Flying Spur, who finished a distance clear of hot favourite, Vic’s Last Chance. Marston Moses took the third place.

The PPORA Dodson & Horrell Club Members Race for novice riders, Division 1, was won by the Toby Greenall ridden, Dark Thunder. However this Lord Daresbury owned winner looked to be second best when Celioso unseated Sally Ireland at the last fence. Exit Swinger and High Rank took the minor placings.

Rebecca Mason took Division 2 of this PPORA Members race on the well fancied favourite, West Coaster, who won with a little in hand from Trooper Collins with Philtre taking third spot.

Only three horses went to post for the Mens Open Race, kindly sponsored by Ye Old Bell Hotel at Barnby Moor. However this produced the closest finish of the day when the Nigel Tutty ridden Reflex Blue battled all the way up the run in to just get the better of the Gerald Bailey trained, My Best Buddy, ridden by Dickie Barrett. The winner here is now eligible for the £10,000 3m ½ f Volkswagen Touareg Championship H.C.Final to be run at Towcester in May.

Seven went to post for the Suzuki sponsored, Ladies Open Race and this produced the fastest race time of the day. This race was won by the Freya Hartley ridden, Mooramana, who was racing for the first time since August 2006. Well supported, Bedtime Boys and Scotmail Too took the minor places.

The Open Maiden Race for eight year olds and over attracted an entry of six and Camwatch, the Home Security people were sponsors. This was another comfortable win for the Tutty family who own and train the horse. Pip Tutty took the gelding clear two fences from home and always looked in command. Villamara and Souk Al Jabba, the favourite, took the minor placings.

MCR Technologies kindly sponsored Division 1 of the 2 ½ mile Maiden race, for 5, 6 and 7year olds. Only two went to post here. Dickie Barrett riding the Gerald Bailey seven year old, Pass The Parsel, led every yard of the way to beat Nick Kent on Kit’s Last Penny by a distance.

Final race on the card was Division 2 of the maiden race and this was also run over 2 ½ miles. Five horses went to post and Cantrell Arenas sponsored the race. The Nick Kent trained and ridden five year old, Farmer Frank, was a warm favourite following a promising debut last year. Taken to the front from the start, the South Notts horse never looked like getting caught and won by eight lengths. Mardonic Declare, from the Atherstone finished second.

Following the days racing, Applewhite Gifts and Howard Farms kindly sponsored the two Pony races. The five furlong race was won by 13 year old Emma Garner on Just Jack and the seven furlong race went to 15 year old Gemma Tutty on The Bossy Hobbit.

The next Midland Area Point to Point will take place at Garthorpe, near Melton Mowbray when the Cottesmore hold their meeting.

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