Entries & Recent Form

It was great to see Eamon An Cnoic back in the winners' enclosure with a decisive success at Sandown yesterday afternoon.  Our ten year old has been a tremendous servant down the years, winning some nice races and running some excellent races in defeat, including when placed in the Brown Adversary over fences at the Cheltenham Festival.  He certainly deserved to get his head in front once again and we are all especially pleased for the Angove Family who have been tremendously patient.  Fergus Gillard gave him a lovely ride, getting his fractions spot-on in the testing conditions and he never looked like getting caught in the straight.  It would be no surprise to see him turned out again quickly before the handicapper can have his say, especially as he would go unpenalised for this conditional jockeys' race.

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The long journey was made worthwhile when the stable enjoyed a nice winner at Wetherby as Umbrigado (pictured above) ran out the ready winner of the 1m7f handicap chase yesterday afternoon.  Jumping well on the whole, he tracked the leaders into the straight and took command at the third last and stayed on resolutely to win by 2½ lengths under Tom Scudamore.  The strong pace certainly helped on this drop back in trip as he posted a good performance under top-weight to win from a mark of 139 on just his third outing over fences.  Still lightly raced, he can progress further and is an exciting chaser for the yard.

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There are four meetings taking place this afternoon with jumps card from Hereford and Wetherby and all-weather flat fixtures from Wolverhampton and Kempton.  David has two runners this afternoon; Umbrigado and Hugo 'N Taz.  Umbrigado contests the 1m7f handicap chase at Wetherby at 2.05pm.  He has taken well to fences, finishing second to a useful rival on his debut before winning last time out at Fontwell over 2m3f.  He will certainly get further than this, although he has won at the minimum distance.  He won't mind the ground and looks to have a decent chance despite the burden of topweight.  Tom Scudamore is in the saddle.

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Despite the recent thaw, there was still an early morning inspection at Carlisle to ensure that their jumps card this afternoon can go ahead.  The good news is that they have passed and will be joined by a jumps fixture from Catterick and a couple of all-weather flat meetings from Kempton and Newcastle.  The ground at the turf meetings are sure to be extremely testing so there may not be many finishers.  There are no runners from the Pond House team today, although we will have runners tomorrow and the remainder of the week is looking extremely busy.

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The stable enjoyed a good weekend with racing on the turf finally allowed to go ahead with Exeter's jumps card yesterday.  As you know, I had my doubts about the meeting getting the green light, but the temperatures rose enough to allow the course to hold an all hurdle/bumper card even if the chases had to be abandoned.  David and Tom Scudamore enjoyed two winners courtesy of Martinhal and Brinkley who both produced excellent performances in really testing conditions.

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There are (hopefully!) two meetings taking place this afternoon.  Exeter need to pass an early morning inspection if their jumps meeting is to go ahead, whilst there is also an all-weather flat fixture from Southwell.  David is due to have three runners at Exeter today; Martinhal, Astigar and Brinkley.  It would be great if the meeting could go ahead, although I'm afraid I have my doubts.  Temperatures are due to pick up as the day goes on tomorrow but it may just be too late to save the meeting, let's hope not.

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Well, following yesterday's abandonment, Chelmsford are once again unable to race due to a frozen track.  They will have to change the description from all-weather racing to most-weather racing.  That leaves us with a couple of all-weather flat fixtures courtesy of Lingfield and Wolverhampton.  It's not exactly Christmas is it?  Still, it is better than having no racing on and ITV 4 will be covering some of the races from Lingfield.  Unusually, David has two runners on the flat at Lingfield today;  Ranco and Sans Logique who contest the 1m4f handicap at 11.45am.

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