POINT-to-point racing returns to Ratcheugh Farm, Alnwick, this Sunday, where there are 109 entries for a seven-race card, writes Pointer.
The prospects are looking good after a fine, drying week and a solid entry throughout the card.
Racing commences at 12.30pm with the Northern Area Club Members where there are 18 entries.
Anns Benefit, from Victor Thompson’s Newton-by-the-Sea stables, was a course winner last time out, however, this task may prove more difficult.
The former Nicky Richards-trained Harmony Brig has had a recent run in Yorkshire and was ultra consistent on the race course.
However, my selection goes with Jimmy Walton’s Sacred Mountain, an impressive winner over course and distance in January.
In the next, the Novice Riders and Club Members Race, it is hard to ignore the claims of recent course victor Badger Foot. This horse came home clear in the Men’s Open from another run and it is hard to ignore that form. The main competition could be from Stark Raven, victorious in a Novice Riders Race at Kelso in February.
The third race is the Restricted Race for winners of one.
These races have shown the strongest form in the Northern Area to date and careful consideration has to be given to the claims of Commonburn, who was just beaten by Hold On Julio at the Percy Meeting two weeks ago.
Hold On Julio is due to run in the first race and a strong reappearance could hold some timely clues.
The main danger could be Jimmy Walton’s Saddle Pack, who has come up against Victor Thompson’s ultra consistent Indian Print twice this year.
The Ladies Open, which is scheduled to run at 2pm looks to be totally in the hands of Robbers Glen.
Ridden by the evergreen Val Jackson, this horse was idling in front when cruising to victory at the Percy Meeting and undoubtedly the race would have brought him on.
Punters looking for a bit of value here could do worse than look at Wooler auctioneer Gavin Hamilton’s Lord Who, who has already been placed twice on the course this year.
There are 11 scheduled to go to post in the Men’s Open where Victor Thompson’s Indian Print has extremely strong claims.
A winner seven times last year and already successful twice this year, he has very strong form.
Competition could come from Hunter Chase winner Benwell, Badger Foot if he takes up this option rather than the Novice Riders race and course winner, Another Rum.
The final two races are for maiden horses, yet to win a race.
Close attention should be paid to the paddock, however, my thoughts go with Morpeth-based Claire Moore’s Coole Murphy in Division One, who will certainly benefit from having a few runs, or Through The Mist, who was unlucky when falling at the last at the Percy Meeting.
Gates open at 11am. Entry is £10 per head, which includes racecard, and children are free. There are full bar, betting and catering facilities available.