Newbury's jumps season kicks off - good racing & some markers for the future
Punters were out in force on Thursday (November 7) at Newbury Racecourse spotting horses to follow as the jumps season progresses.
Two to watch were locally trained Dingo Dollar and Label des Obeaux - Barbury Castle trainer Alan King's entries for the Ladbrokes Trophy Chase (Handicap) at the course on December 1.
Neither of them won their races, but both showed enough promise to merit careful attention over the coming weeks. With his unmistakable white face well in the mix throughout the race, six-year-old gelding Dingo Dollar with Wayne Hutchinson aboard, came fourth in the three mile Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle.
In the Racing Post's judgment "Dingo Dollar was always up with the pace and ran well at a track where he won of fences last season - this will have set him up nicely for a return to chasing." He will be carrying 10st 9lbs in the Ladbrokes Trophy - against 11 st 12 lbs for top-weighted Thistlecrack.
King's other Ladbrokes entry Label des Obeaux ran in the same Newbury race as Dingo Dollar - and came home sixth under Tom Bellamy. The seven-year-old gelding's performance will have impressed connections and he will now go back over fences.
Trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies and ridden by Sam Twiston-Davies, he led for much of the race, jumping eagerly and safely - and came home in fifth place - between the two Alan King horses.Talking of owners being delighted brings us to Splash of Ginge - at ten the oldest horse in the Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle.
Splash of Ginge's owner John Neild was so delighted with his horse's performance he very nearly knocked Sam Twiston-Davies flying as he was setting off back to the weighing room. It is said Splash of Ginge normally needs a run to get him going at the start of the season - on this evidence he is certainly still one to watch. He has entries for Cheltenham's November meeting and for the Newbury Ladbrokes Trophy.
was back in the saddle and came home in fifth place aboard Aimee De Sivola in the CSP Mares' Novices Hurdle. A race won in great style by Nicky Henderson trained Lust for Glory ridden by Jeremiah McGrath - surely putting down a marker for success in future appearances - and one of Henderson's two victories on the day.After her internship working at Newbury Racecourse over the Flat season, Lizzie Kelly
But Lizzie Kelly made sure of victory in the two mile and four furlong Dawnus Handicap Steeple Chase. She was riding the Nick Williams trained gelding Siruh Du Lac - one of only two five-year-olds in the thirteen strong field.
Siruh Du Lac jumped 'brilliantly'. Nick Williams said he had "no particular plans, just good Saturday handicaps" to watch out for. And Lizzie Kelly was glad to have a winner over the jumps she had seen from her office window during the summer.
The going at Newbury was Good to Soft, Good in places on the hurdle course and Good, Good to Soft in places on the chase course.
Next up at Newbury the Ladbrokes Winter Carnival - November 30 and December 1 - featuring the £250,000 Ladbrokes Trophy on the Saturday.