Jedforest at FRIARS HAUGH
Sunday 6th February 2000
by David Scott (Pointer of the Northumberland Gazette)

Friars Haugh played host to the Jedforest Point to Point last week and despite a couple of showers and the wind picking up later on the racing was excellent. Highlight has to be a four timer for Clive Storey who has picked up this season where he left off last.

Rainbow Times started things off for Clive. Taking it up on the run to the second last she readily accounted for, what must be said, a pretty moderate field for the Men’s Open. The winner is only a small mare and ran in Ladies races last year for the Anderson stable and in my opinion may struggle when pitched against better class Open horses. Having said that you can only beat what’s against you. Charlieadams was running a fair race, making most of the running and coming back after being headed, when unseating James Muir three out and may be capable of picking up a race.

Thirty minutes later Clive, after a real duel from the third last, drove home Highland Monarch by a head in the Restricted to complete his double. This was a decent heat and the second, Mountain Thyne, lost nothing in defeat and his turn is near at hand. The third, Geordies Express, was tenderly handled and should improve considerably for the outing. With more aggressive tactics here he could well have troubled the front two. Of the rest Victorias Boy ran pretty well and should be noted when campaigned back in Yorkshire.

The Mares Open race provided plenty of thrills and the third winner of the afternoon for Clive in the shape of Queen Biddy who jumped best and stayed on stoutly to beat Lady Alice and Briar Rose. The third is only 5 and looks to be struggling to last home at the moment but should win races in time. Hard luck stories of the race were Solway Donal who had just moved onto the heels of the leaders when falling at the 2nd along the riverside and Homo Dorney, from the Coole Abbey stable, who was cantering when carried out by a loose horse on the turn out of the back straight. Both look capable of early wins.

Clive had to wait until the final race of the afternoon to complete his 4 timer when Maximize carrying Lady Vestey’s colours took it up with well over a circuit to run and easily saw off Toms Man and Gallant Major. Hey Chief and Nisbet would have filled the minor honours but for falling at the 2nd last and last respectively however neither would have troubled the winner who looks a nice horse and should follow up.

Earlier in the day The Alleycat provided a first winner for Paul Robson when easily taking the Hunt race from Hooky’s Treat. This was Paul’s first winner from only his second ride. His chance of a double ended when he was unseated from Kilminfoyle in the Men’s (Paul’s form figures now read U1U – will the sequence continue?).

The Intermediate saw Riverside Run finally realise some of his potential when, under a strong ride from Andrew Robson, he saw off the persistent challenge of Boyup Brook. The winner did it nicely, having gone to the front three out, and a decent season is in prospect. The runner up usually benefits from a run or two and ran well on his reappearance. Claywalls stayed on well, albeit too late, and is another who improves for racing although the Hamilton stable has yet to really fire.

The Ladies race went to Pauline Robson aboard Riparius, a recruit from Paul Webber’s yard, which had just too much toe for the admirably consistent Astrac Trio. The winner doesn’t like being in front too long and saw plenty daylight from three out. If Pauline can cover him up longer then more successes await. Eyecatcher was Kingennie from Jane Niven's yard. This ex Mary Reveley winning hurdler ran really well without being knocked about and should step up on this form.

The first division of the Maiden fell to River of Gold from the Jigtime stable. This ex Irish pointer was given a patient ride by Maxine Bremner ran on really well to account for Happy Blake, thus denying Clive Storey a nap hand, and the consistent if well exposed Roscoe Burn who made much of the running and stuck on pretty well. The winner could well follow up in a Restricted.