Highlights of the last three decades of the Suffolk
by Mike Ashby

2010-2015

Date:     8th March 2015        Going:  GOOD to FIRM

Races:        7        Runners:    35        Winning Favourites        6 out of 7

A memorable afternoon for some East Anglian participants in a meeting that saw the favourite romp home in all but one of the races and run on good to firm ground.

Jockey Richard Collinson and trainer Andrew Pennock enjoyed a treble with the following winners. PLAY THE ACE ( East Anglia Area Club Members’), KING HIGH ( Men’s Open) and BLACK GLEN BOY ( Open Maiden ). The fastest time of the day was recorded by Play The Ace and his trainer was enjoying another fine season from his Timworth stable situated in sight of the Ampton course. Co-incidentally, the previous occupant of the same stables was James Owen and he landed his ever training double with REMARKABLE MAN ( Intermediate) and AUTUMN HAZE ( Restricted|) with leading East Anglian jockeys Gina Andrews and Rupert Stearn taking the winning rides, respectively.

LEADING HORSE:

PLAY THE ACE:   Black or brown gelding by Scorpion  out of  Henris Blaze

Ran four times in Irish points without winning but has subsequently won six races since coming to the mainland. Qualified and took his place in the Point-to-Point Bumper Final, a National Hunt Flat race, at Aintree in May’15 but was unfortunately struck into during the race and finished down the field.

 

2000-2009

Date:     8th March 2009             Going:  GOOD

Races:          6         Runners:    52       Winning Favourites:     4 out of  6

In the Men’s Open CAVEMAN completed a four-timer with the owner’s son, George Greenock, in the saddle as usual. Nigel Bloom who trained this winner doubled up when GO NORTH took the Confined race with Joe Docker taking the ride. The gelding whizzed round Ampton in the fastest time of the day with the race run in a hailstorm, a feature of the day.

The Members’ race went to, surprisingly for the first time in five years, the Joe Turner stable when WINAPENNY and James Owen justified favouritism, taking the lead two out, from the front-running Columba. They were the only two finishers from the four that faced the starter.

LEADING HORSE:

CAVEMAN :   Bay gelding by Primitive Rising out ofFerneyhill Lady

A multiple winner who always put in a consistent performance and a great servant to his owner Countess Cathcart, whilst providing some notable successes for her son, George Greenock. Ampton was the venue for some of the gelding’s winning performances but it was at Marks Tey where he was considered a standing dish.

 

1990-1999

Date:    31st January 1999         Going:   GOOD

Races:          7       Runners:      61     Winning Favourites:         2 out of 7

The good ground produced a very acceptable turnout of runners but some fancied horses appeared to leave their best form back in their home stable.

Both Ruperts Choice ( Men’s Open ) and more surprisingly Fair Exchange ( Confined ), failed to sparkle as normal and were not involved in the finishes of their respective races. Fair Exchange was eventually pulled up, three out, by Paul Taiano, having never beenjumping well which left O’FLAHERTY’S BABE and Simon Sporborg to land the Confined event, unchallenged, by 20 lengths. Simon’s mount in the Men’s Open, Ruperts Choice, finished last in a race won by HATCHAM BOY and Christian Ward-Thomas, the pairing pressing on from two out and were 4 lengths clear at the finish. The Ladies’ Open went to Hannah Barnard riding PEANUTS PETowned by her father. The winners were soon clear after taking the lead up the Ampton finishing straight. Again, here, the favourite Larry The Lamb disappointed, having always been behind after some early jumping errors.

FEATURED HORSE:

PEANUTS PET:    Bay gelding by Tina’s Pet out Sinzinbra

This win was this robust little gelding’s 20th success of his career. Failed to register another win in the 1999 season but at fifteen years of age, always managed to complete the course, during this season, except for just one occasion when Hannah pulled him up in very soft going at Newton Bromswold.

 

1980-1989

Date:   18th February 1989                Going:     SOFT        

Races:   6    Runners :     67   Winning Favourites   1 & 1 joint out of 6

A double for Nigel Bloom but achieved with his winning mounts running different types of races.

In the Restricted Open, DARRINGTON DEAL made progress before taking the lead two out and running on strongly and just held, Chevalogan, by a neck. In the very next race Nibby completed his double in the Men’s Open when ROYAL RAGA led from four out but began to tire badly, on the uphill finishing straight and just got home, again by a neck, from the favourite Noan Wood and George Cooper. William Nott had a relatively satisfactory afternoon winning the AdjacentHunts race on CAUCHEMAR, the pair drew clear of their rivals from four out. Will had a chance of a another winner but had to settle for second place in the Adjacent Hunts Maiden when Mr. Snodgrass had to give second best to NOBLE BLADE and Robert Downing, going down by 2 lengths.       

FEATURED HORSE:

DARRINGTON DEAL:   Chestnut mare  by Rymer out of Chukka

 Joined Mike Bloom’s stable in preparation for the 1989 season and was placed in the first three of all her nine races, that season. This included four wins after having only won her Maiden at Higham on the first day of the season in February.