Andrew and Ruth Pennock, the hard-working husband and wife team who train a small string of horses at Timworth, near Bury St Edmunds, celebrated their first ever double at the Granta Harriers Point-To-Point at Cottenham on Sunday.
Both victories came in conjunction with jockey Ben Rivett, from Sharrington, near Norwich, who thus took his seasonal tally to a career best score of five.
Firstly Rivett guided Milled, the complete outsider in a field of six, to a shock success in the two and a hald mile Maiden. Never jumping with much fluency, Milled looked set to finish no better than third landing over the final fence but took advantage when the favourite, the unwilling On The Arthur, slowed markedly in the last few yards with the race seemingly in his pocket.
Rivett and the Pennocks struck again in the Restricted Race when Galbally King showed admirable courage and no little talent to surge away from Elvis The King in the closing stages and clock the fastest time of the day.
Even their third and final representative, Waluigi, managed an honourable second place in the closing three mile Maiden. But he was comprehensively outpaced by Sa Kaldoun, who overcame two momentous jumping blunders to land a wide margin success under Newmarket-based pilot Louise Allan.
Sa Kaldoun was himself completing a double for the Pennocks’ neighbour, Joe Turner. But, as the winningmost owner in the history of the sport, Turner, who lives at Ampton Hall, has enjoyed a brace of winners (and often more) on numerous occasions in the past.
The Turner duo was kicked off in the Novice Riders Race when Basic Fact came home two lengths clear of Lepido. The winning rider here was Rosie Thorogood, who was notching her second career success a week after her cousin, Georgie Thorogood, had got off the mark at the Suffolk fixture.
John Ferguson, from Cowlinge, near Newmarket, has been enjoying a wonderful few months, topped of by saddling New Year’s Eve to finish a superb second in the Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival last Wednesday.
But his heart pounds hardest when watching his son, James, ride between the flags and he got a big kick out of watching Ferguson junior guiding Earth Dream to a smooth victory in the Mens Open.
The Intermediate Race showcased the talents of another in-form handler as Festival Bound,trained at Wymondham by Caroline Fryer and owned by Great Yarmouth resident Cliff Underwood, showed no ill affects of having raced just eight days earlier when beating Desertmore Valley by 20 lengths.
The only ‘foreign’ win of the day came in the Ladies’ Open when the Yorkshire raider, Sea Senor, breezed home 15 lengths clear despite as usual jumping violently right-handed.
4,5,6 & 7 Year Olds Maiden 2 miles 4 furlongs
1 Milled – Ben Rivett 14/1
2 On The Arthur – Dicky Collinson 11/10f
3 Flo The Machine – Clare Hobson
Time 4 mins 41 secs Dists: 1L, 3L 6 ran
1 Festival Bound – Bridget Andrews 4/5f
2 Desertmore Valley – Rupert Stearn
3 Chancery Lad – Jacqui Coward
Time 5-59 Dists: 20L, 5L 8 ran
Earth Dream – James Ferguson 1/8f
bt L’Oudon – Rupert Stearn
Time 6-09 Dists: 25L Only 2 ran
1 Basic Fact – Rosie Thorogood 4/5f
2 Lepido – Patrick Smith
3 Duke Of Stradone – Toby Lawes
Time 6-06 Dists: 2l, 3L 7 ran
1 Sea Senor – Jacqui Coward 7/4
2 Bearneen Boy – Bridget Andrews Ev’sf
3 Maison De Vonnas – Emma Todd
Time 6-00 Dists: 15L, 4L 5 ran
1 Galbally King – Ben Rivett 9/4
2 Elvis The King – James Owen 1/2f
3 Lan Na Lamh – Faye Conway
Time 5-58 Dists: 6L, 25L 3 ran
Open Maiden 3 miles
1 Sa Kaldoun – Louise Allan 1/3f
2 Waluigi – Ben Rivett
3 Hondalia – Dicky Collinson
Time 6-09 Dists: Dist, 5L 6 ran