Saturay 15th April @ Higham -
Essex & Suffolk
2.10 Restricted – 7 entries
Only 7 entries and so probably not much of a contest in prospect. Baxxos from the Stearn yard pu on his only run to date in the March Penshurst Restricted when t.o. but should have come on for the run. Not much luck this season for Beat the Index who ran prominently but refused at the last when well behind at Ampton in March, ran 12L 3rd to Scorpion Star on this track in Feb and may well make the frame. 6 runs for Condorman in 2016 and now his 6th run in the current season, his opening run was a long way back 4th on this track in Jan but ran 6L 2nd to Scorpion Star on good to firm ground at the Feb. meeting here and should go close although a p.u. on his most recent run at Fakenham when t.o. does not inspire confidence. 11yr. DidYouEver has run 27 times and won his Maiden back in 2014 with Restricted placings in 2015 and 2016 but a pu and 6/8 this season probably indicates he won’t trouble the judge here. Muchadoboutnothing won the Feb. Cottenham short Maiden but has struggled since over the longer distance which may be the case here. Somme Boy from the inform Pennock yard has only run at Cottenham this season and was successful in the Dec short Maiden and pu when t.o on his last run – another that may struggle over 3m. An amazing 9th run for this season for The Master Remover with only 6 days between his last 2 runs at Fakenham and High Easter so may well not run again so soon.
Selection: Condorman Alternative: Beat the Index
2.45 Mixed Open – 16 entries
Broken Eagle has won his last 8 starts in points and is way ahead of the rest of these in terms of ability. The main question is whether he suffered any injuries in his fall at Aintree last week. Presumably connections won’t run him unless they are 100% happy. Silvergrove has won both his starts in Veteran & Novice Riders’ races this season including a win over 2016 star Done A Runner at High Easter last month. It would be interesting to see how he goes in Open company but he has other options that connections may prefer. Sa Kaldoun is a consistent runner and finished a close 3rd behind an improved Weather Warning and disappointing Lough Inch at Fakenham two weeks ago. He has chance if the race cuts up. Limpopo Tom ran well receiving 5lbs to finish only 4l behind Silvergrove on his first start this season in Vet and Novice Riders at Fakenham 2 weeks ago. He’s receiving 8lbs this time. It was good to see Banksandditches win again at Horseheath last month after nearly two years on the sidelines. He didn’t have much to beat in that race once the hot favourite Horizontal Speed had departed so there is still a question mark over how much ability he retains. Burtredgipandgump has only raced once this season and has presumably had problems. He was beaten a short head by Nightscape at High Easter last month, the latter was tailed off at Garthorpe a week later. Bincombe has put in a series of consistent runs in Novice Riders races over the last season and ran well to finish 10l behind Counting Stars in the 3m 6f CA Club Members at High Easter last weekend despite his 7lb penalty. That was a hard race and hopefully connections will give him a rest.
Selection: Broken Eagle Alternative: Silvergrove
3.20 PPORA Club Members (Novice Riders) – 9 entries
Silvergrove is chasing a hat-trick in novice riders races and should win this if turning up here today. On his last appearance he beat another possible rival Limpopo Tom by 4 lengths at Fakenham earlier this month. The James Owen yard also have Bincombe entered for owner rider Tim Gredley and he was 2nd on his last outing when he finished 10 lengths adrift of Counting Stars in a 3 mile 6 furlongs race last week at High Easter so possibly won’t turn out here today. Limpopo Tom is a four time scorer under rules and that was a creditable pointing debut. The Tim Bryce yard, responsible for Limpopo Tom also have Boxer Beat entered. He finished 3rd at Cottenham in February in a hunt members beaten 20 lengths by Torran Na Dtann and looks to be the yard’s second string here. Vesperal Dream is the possible mount of her owner, former Olympic cycling champion Victoria Pendleton, but he also has entries at Kimble today. He won a ladies open at Cottenham in February by a neck from Sharp Suit and was 2nd on his last run when beaten 12 lengths by Vedettariat at Kingston Blount last month, on both occasions Izzy Marshall was aboard. Weather Warning won the ladies open at Fakenham earlier this month when beating last week’s facile winner Lough Inch by a length to give his rider Antonia Peck her debut victory. I can’t find any previous on his rider today Miss H. Cranfield so I assume this will be her first ride. Abbey Lane won a novice riders contest here in February when beating subsequent winner Carry On Asian by 30 lengths. On his last run he was 4th in the men’s open at Fakenham two weeks ago, 18 lengths adrift of the winner Consigliere. He’s due to be ridden by Seb Burnett-Wells who was aboard for his Higham victory. Nightscape was victorious in a men’s open at High Easter last month when beating Burtregipandgump by a short head before being well beaten on his next outing at Garthorpe when 7th and last in a mixed open but possibly was unsuited by the soft going and conditions today will be more to his liking. Santa’s Secret has been well beaten on both pointing starts this season, on his final start he was 5th at High Easter last month beaten 9 ½ lengths in a 2 ½ mile ladies open behind Decade Player. He boasts one win under rules when trained by Oliver Sherwood in a 2 mile chase at Southwell in February 2016 when beating Buck Mulligan by 11 lengths. Silvergrove will take all the beating if turning up here and he is our selection. Abbey Lane is our alternative, boasting winning course form and is more likely to run than Vesperal Dream who holds engagements elsewhere.
Selection: Silvergrove Alternative: Abbey Lane
3.55 Open Maiden (4,5,6&7 yr olds) – 5 entries
Kev The Car does deserve to break his maiden soon; he was running another game race at Fakenham only to be carried out by a loose horse as they went out on the final circuit. He acts on quicker ground and has run well around a sharp track like Cottenham and a galloping track like Ampton so he does not seem track and ground dependent. If he is recovered from his bad experience at Fakenham, it could be his day at last. Barrymore Legal was in the same race at Fakenham, he was behind for much of the contest but did stay on to be a poor 3rd ahead of Legend To Be. The latter has improved this season and is at least getting round now, however more will be needed to win. Ididandididn’t ran on very different ground (soft) at Whitfield and was 4th of 4 finishers so more is needed too. Tinseltown Girl is a newcomer from the Hobson yard, although she did run in a charity race at Horseheath so has seen a course before. Her dam, Festive Chimes ran 62 times for Neil King and Caroline Bailey so hopefully she will do well in her 2nd career. Tinseltown Girl gets useful allowances – being a 5-year-old mare and will hopefully have a good experience on her point debut but she may lack experience to beat the streetwise Kev The Car.
Selection: Kev The Car Alternative: Barrymore Legal
4.30 Open Maiden– 9 entries
With Ididandididnt and Kev the Car entered in the previous race we are likely to be down to just seven possible runners in this race. Harris Garden from the Alan Hill yard did little when under rules but has shown some ability in points after two outings, last time finished 2nd at Milbourne St Andrew in late March. Infinityand beyond has been placed on a few occasions, was 3rd last week at High Easter but was twenty-five lengths behind Iwillifiwant who in turn was twenty-five lengths behind the winner Easy on Sunday. Legend to Be has had two outings this year, was 2nd to Banksandditches at Horseheath in a three runner Hunt race and last time was a distance 4th at Fakenham. On the Tangle has shown little this season but did finish 2nd here at the corresponding meeting last season. You would expect that We’ve got Company would eventually get home in front, is from the Andrew Pennock yard and has had sixteen outings in points finishing six times in 2nd and three times in 3rd. Last time out was 2nd to Kings Walden at Horseheath, I fear may still have to wait for a further outing to succeed.
Selection: Harris Garden Alternative: We’ve got Company.
5.05 EAA Club Members Conditions – 14 entries
As with most races at Easter, several of those entered here hold multiple entries across the weekend. Burtredgipandgump has made only one visit to the track so far this season, and was denied a winning return by Nightscape, who headed Burtredgipandgump on the run-in to win by a short head, with Banksandditches behind in 5th. Banksandditches has since won a three runner members race at Horseheath, his main rival unseating his rider at the 4th last. Merrydown Vintage won first time out around this course in February, beating Black Glen Boy by 5 lengths. He then finished 3rd to Amigo in a club member’s race at High Easter, where Shakalakaboomboom was 10 lengths adrift in 4th. Merrydown Vintage was an odds-on favourite at Kingston Blount at the beginning of the month but could only finish 2nd to Pride of Parish. Royal Chieftain was an odds-on chance to win a maiden race around Higham in February, but fell at the 15th. He made amends next time at Ampton, beating Kev The Car by ½ length. His last appearance was at Fakenham two weeks ago in the restricted race, where he found Teeton Power 5 lengths too good. Weather Warning had run a promising race behind Decade Player over 2 ½ miles around High Easter in March, being beaten on 6 ½ lengths, where Santa’s Secret was a further 2 ¾ lengths behind in 5th, and showed improved form again to win the ladies open race at Fakenham, catching Lough Inch (winner last week) and Sa Kaldoun on the run-in.
Selection: Burtredgipandgump Alternative: Merrydown Vintage