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North West Point-to-Point Club
Sunday 15th May 2011
by Arthur Shone

The feature race on the card was the Dodson & Horrell PPORA Club Members for the novice riders championship final. Only five runners went to post with victory going to Nile Moon under Lucinda Sutcliffe, who won very easily by twenty lengths from Teeton Dazzler with Lizzie Harris in the plate. The winner is trained by the riders mother Claire Sutcliffe in Yorkshire and owned by her husband Alistair. The trainer bought the horse privately off Ian and Ann Hamilton, which is turning out to be a good buy as the horse has won three races this season; the 20 year old rider has won five races this season and is currently the champion novice rider in Yorkshire.

The Point to Point Club Members race was won in good style by the Gordy Edwards trained Shady Anne who made all from flag fall under Will Kinsey, in the well known colours of owner Derek Pugh. The mare put in a master class display jumping and won readily by a length and a half from the well backed jolly Fairymount with Josh Hamer in the plate. Speaking after the race Gordy Edwards said, "She wasn't for catching today, I said to Will (Kinsey) that she needs holding up, but my wife Sarah told the jockey to go out and make it, I am glad that he listened to Sarah. She was going to go to stud last season, but the owner was not keen, so we have had her for another season. I think that will be it now as she is 13, I will speak to the owner about retiring her to stud, and it would be fitting that she went out on a high."

Gordy's sister Sheila Crow won the Men's Open with Enter Paradise, who was an impressive five length winner under Richard Burton, who took up the running on the Moscow Society gelding three out and won going away by five lengths from Broken Reed. The winner was recording his third winner of the season for owner Richard French, who said that his horse was getting better with each race, a view echoed by his trainer Sheila Crow, who said, "He has improved a lot this season and Richard (Burton) said that he had improved since his last win at Alpraham. He is a very genuine horse and he will run again next Sunday at either Bangor on Dee or Garthorpe." Rob Hankey announced after the race that his horse Noble Persian, a winner of 12 races from 22 starts who was trained by Gary Hanmer was retired after running in the race.

Nantwich trainer Gary Hanmer and the clerk of the course Rob Hankey did not leave the Cheshire course empty handed after Time Gentlemen won a thriller to land the Restricted under Josh Hamer by a head from Will Kinsey aboard Ease And Grace, the front two pulled 15 lengths clear of the third horse, The Tinkerater. The disappointment of the race was the jolly Captain Scarlet, who was backed off the boards only to be pulled up by Richard Burton. Hanmer was elated when I spoke to him afterwards, he said, "I must be honest that was a surprise with the likes of Captain Scarlet in the race, the best I hoped for was a place, but I will take the win." The winner is co owned by Brenda Shaw and Rob Hankey.

Sam Drake recorded her 12th win of the season aboard Keeverfield in the Ladies' Open, who was not extended to beat Lagosta with Jane Williams in the plate by three lengths. That win looks to have sealed the North Western area champion lady rider title for Drake. Keeverfield is also owned and trained by Sam.

The 10yr old and over PPORA Club Members race saw the Lisa Willis trained Somewin follow up his recent win at Chaddesley Corbett with the trainers daughter Kelsie Willis aboard, beating the well backed Malt Max under Richard Burton by a couple of lengths. The staying on Castletown Cross was a further length and a half back in third. This was Kelsie's third winner of the season, all of which have been trained by her mother at Bourton.

The opening Maiden went off bang on the safety limit of 16 runners, at the end of the race it went to a head bopper between Adam Wadlow on Alcarson and Mikey Ennis on Hurlstone Tower, the latter prevailing by a head. The front two pulled some 20 lengths clear of Lincs Lad. The winner is trained at Penrith by Vicki Dobbin, and co owned by the trainer and Mary Lewis from Dumfrithshire, who said afterwards that her horse had been unlucky in his last two races, adding that he should definitely have won at Whittington last time out."

This meeting was one for the die hard point to point enthusiasts, as it took place it rained for most of the day, saying that there was a good crowd and the racing was excellent.

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