4:43pm Friday 2nd May 2014
ANOTHER bank holiday weekend sees another double header of point-to-point action, with the Zetland meeting taking place on Monday.
Racing starts at 2pm in the grounds of Witton Castle, where the racecourse at the bottom of a hill provides good viewing as runners race around the lake.
Racing starts with the Hunt Members Race and this looks set up for Drill Sergeant who we haven’t seen much of this year, but improved on his first run to finish second latterly.
Phil Dennis has his pick of horses with the Rustlin Rhino also entered but Supreme Plan could be the main danger for owner, rider Ted Cameron.
A total of 14 have been entered for the Intermediate and Our Sandy can land the spoils here. He is constantly progressing and it looks as though there is still more to come.
Forge Valley has run some good races this year without actually getting his head in front and Sposalizio could go well for Chris Dawson after winning his restricted at the Cleveland meeting.
In the Restricted Race Skimbleshanks could go close after winning at the Saintondale meeting on Easter Monday.
Newspage could probably do with a stiffer three miles having won his maiden at the Holderness meeting, but the track could suit Sarah Easterby’s Pebbleglen.
Witton tends to be a lucky course for Lady Susan Watson who has TC Spitfire entered and could go close on his Middleton form.
Ballyanrahan has run consistently well this season and was unlucky when slipping and coming down at the Bedale meeting. Providing he can keep his jumping together in the latter stages he is another to be considered.
Phil Dennis’ Hunt race horses have been double entered in the Men’s Open and whichever runs will certainly make it a competitive event.
Yes I Can won well at the Cleveland meeting and could go well for Chris Dawson who will have to try and decide between Maria Myco’s charge and Know The Rules who won for him at Easingwold on Sunday, recapturing his best form.
Senor Alco was due to run but was withdrawn and is another who could finish in the frame.
There are some class entries in the Ladies Open with Palypso De Creek heading affairs. A good win at the weekend saw that he remains in excellent form and should he turn out here, he will take all the beating.
Maxwil was a winner at the Badsworth & Bramham Moor meeting where trainer Micky Hammond was quick to credit his team of staff who have put in a lot of effort to get this horse to the track.
Call Me Mulligan took advantage of the 60 day rule to win well at the Bedale meeting and could go close again if he turns out.
Royal Deal has a distinct style of running but Joanna Mason has managed to encourage him to get his head in front twice this season and she will no doubt put every effort into trying to coax this wily fellow along.
Racing finishes with the Open Maiden for which 26 entries have been made.
Rush House has been running really well for her connections and it looks as though the racing game has clicked for her.
Printing Press showed his best form finishing third at the Bedale meeting but on his Charm Park form, R Theveryman could provide another much needed win for Jacqueline Coward who is once again in the running for the national championship title.
The postcode for satellite navigation is DL14 0DE with the cost of admission £10 per person and the going is currently good.
A slightly modified course provides the setting for the Pendle Forest & Craven Hunt Point-to-Point at Heslaker on Saturday.
The course is now a furlong and a half shorter than in previous years as a result of bypassing the steeper pull of the hill.
Racing starts at 2pm with the Yorkshire Area Point-to-Point Club Members Race where 17 horses have been entered.
The second race is the Coniston Hall Hotel Yorkshire Area Point-to-Point Club Members Restricted Championship and horses that have been placed in the first four in a Coniston Hall Restricted qualifier are eligible for a £300 bonus, should they win.
Roycano can make use of his racecourse experience and go close for hotel connections. Max My Boy won well at the Middleton meeting and is another who will appreciate the stamina test, but this race could go the way of Avinapaddy who made an excellent start to the season and was found to have a corn after finishing second at the Staintondale meeting on Easter Monday.
In the Mens Open, Best Served Cold could run well at this level, a former winner in Ireland he unseated in a hunter chase but can close. My Old Piano proved he is still a force to be reckoned with at the Staintondale meeting and with Harry Bannister suspended there will no doubt be endless phone calls to trainer Steph Easterby from available jockeys.
There are a lot of newcomers in the Open Maiden but one with racecourse experience that could run well is Spitfire Ace, who was last seen finishing fourth at Wetherby in November and takes advantage of the 60 day rule.
The Ladies Open looks full of class.
Ockey De Neulliac has run really well this season winning or coming second in all six starts, however he was beaten fairly at the Bedale after bolting at the start and his behaviour could determine his finishing position.
The Hunt Members race could go the way of My Old Piano if he takes this option over the Mens Open race but Lord Multifix is likely to lay down the challenge.
Admission is £20 per car and £10 for single person admission. The course is one mile South West of Skipton on the A59.
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