THE Cobbler Swayne created a most favourable impression on his debut over fences when romping to an eight-length victory over Court Dismissed in the Racing UK Available Anywhere Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase.
On the first day of Musselburgh’s autumn jumping campaign yesterday, winning trainer Lucinda Russell went on to complete a 39-1 treble with Cobajayisland and Maraweh.
Peter Buchanan was delighted by the way the 15-8 favourite travelled and jumped and Russell added: “I’m really pleased with that. He was a bit keen over hurdles and tackling fences seem to have made him settle better. Chasing can take these point to pointers to a different level and he’s a horse to look forward to. He enjoyed the ground and the track and we might come back here as the prize money is good too!”
Cobajayisland and Maraweh were both ridden by Derek Fox and Russell added: “We’re just trying quietly to push Derek up the conditional ladder. He works ever so hard at home and he has a great feel for a race as he always puts the horses in the right place.”
Callum Bewley was suspended for ten days (19-28 November) after dropping his hands and losing third place close to home on Solway Prince in the race won by Maraweh.
Innocent Touch, the only one of four ‘Touch’ horses not to win on Ayr Gold Cup day when Don’t Touch scooped the big Scottish sprint, got his head in front at this first time of asking over hurdles.
Under Brian Hughes, the Richard Fahey-trained raider got home by half a length from recent Punchestown scorer Winter Lion in the 2m novice event.
The 5-4 favourite is co-owned by Nicholas Wrigley and Kevin Hart and the latter said: “We’ve finally got the last of the ‘Touches’ across the try line. I’m originally from Middlesbrough but I live and work in Edinburgh and I remember coming here during my student days.”
Today at the East Lothian track, Space Ship provides an interesting challenge from Robbie Hennessy’s Irish yard as he tackles the Donaldson Timber Engineering Handicap Hurdle.
Formerly trained by John Gosden on the Flat, Space Ship has yet to really sparkle for Hennessy, although he scraped a Graded race placing this time last year.
He likely needed his outing at Down Royal last Saturday, keeping on for third in a competitive handicap, and it would be no surprise if he made swift progress to win here.
Meanwhile, at Chelmsford, Anglophile can get his winter campaign off to a perfect start in the Totepool Betting On All UK Races Handicap .
The Godolphin-owned four-year-old was one of the leading lights of last year’s All-Weather Championships, winning three times on the way to taking his place on Finals Day back in April.
Having been placed on each start through the winter, it was little surprise to see Charlie Appleby’s charge sent off a warm favourite for the Marathon event, particularly as he had beaten a number of his rivals previously.
However, Mymatechris found a little extra on the big day to avenge a previous defeat and deny Anglophile the main prize by just a head. There was no shame in defeat that day and doubtless a return trip to Lingfield on Good Friday is the long-term aim, with this one-mile-six-furlong heat providing the perfect starting point.
1:00 The Compeller
2:00 Serenity Now
2:30 The Backup Plan
3:00 Space Ship (nap)
3:30 Village Vic
4:00 Sand Blast
5:10 Purple Magic
5:40 Clovelly Bay
6:40 Shifting Star
7:10 Turbo Charged
1:40 Bon Enfant
2:10 Ebony Empress
1:20 Cloudy Dream
1:50 Ryedale Racer
2:20 Solway Legend
2:50 Dundee Blue
3:20 Miss Joeking
3:50 Dusky Bob