By Graham Bishop

There maybe a small gathering at Cheltenham this week to witness the top National Hunt horses strut their stuff across the four days, but on the fifth day all eyes will be focused on our own gathering at High Easter. The first of the six races is at 1pm.

 For the first of two meetings, the other is on 13th April, scheduled to take place at High Easter, this season, it’s time to set the SatNav or go into the memory bank to locate the racecourse, situated in rural Essex, via the network of intricate country roads. Set in its delightful location, High Easter racegoers will find on arrival, everything superbly prepared to the utmost degree and the racing continually produces highly, competitive action. This first fixture, the High Easter Racing Club meeting, is now becoming firmly established within the East Anglian region season.

The six-race card has attracted 71 entries and whilst some horses will hold more than one entry either on this card or elsewhere, it promises to be an interesting afternoon’s racing. highlighted by the third race, the Mixed Open.

Captain Biggles, Clara Sorrento and Knight In Dubai have the option to run Fakenham on Friday to run in the Queen’s Cup Grassroots Hunter Chase, but we could still see Law Of Gold, Deise Aba and Mitchouka, along with recent Ampton scorer Tullys Touch and Ragnar Lodbrok who won at Guilsborough on Sunday.


The meeting commences with a PPORA Club Members Conditions race for novice riders.and three of the entrants have won similar races this season, all on differing tracks. Red Maple’s victory was achieved at Ampton in January and Muckamore’s victory came at the third meeting held at Horseheath this season. Sum It Up was victorious around the flat track at Higham, but has previously won on both his starts around this course. All three have run since those victories, Red Maple performing the best finishing, twice runner-up in Open races.


In the Restricted race, Designed To Win is attempting to follow up his Maiden success earlier this season, whereas his opponents successes are either from last season or earlier. Mister Splash, a winner around this course last season, ran well in defeat at Ampton in which Serenisa finished behind. Mossy Be Lucky won a Maiden race last season at Ampton but you have to go back further to find Maiden victories for the Tom Ellis trained Young Rich and particularly Tiger’s Song who has not run for three years, and won a Restricted race around this course at the final meeting prior to “Covid lockdown” in 2020.


The PPORA Club Members Conditions race to be run over 3 ¾ miles includes several that hold entries in earlier races namely Mitchouka, Muckamore and Koyote. All The Ammunition, the youngest in the field at seven, stayed on strongly to win last time at Horseheath. Jonjoela, at thirteen is one of the oldest in the field but has shown that she relishes a test of stamina, as demonstrated when winning at Horseheath’s second fixture.  Myth Buster has run well in all outings this season is another who will appreciate the trip having won a four mile race last season at Kingston Blount. Reikers Island, who runs well when fresh, won on his reappearance last season, which was also at Kingston Blount.

The fifth race on the card is a Conditions race for keepers who have not registered more than five horses, at the close of entry. Two fascinating entries are that of Some Operator and Pym,with the former, who also holds an entry in the previous race. winning a Maiden point-to-point in Ireland in 2018, at the first time of asking.  Five indifferent runs over hurdles in the UK followed, after which he moved to France in 2019.  Between 2019 and 2022, Some Operator ran thirteen times, winning on two occasions.  These victories were Cross Country races at Corlay, a provincial track in the west of France, the second of which was over 3 ½ miles.

Pym, when trained by Nicky Henderson, was running in races of various guises at the Cheltenham Festival for three consecutive years. Between 2017 and 2021 he won a total of six races. Spells with Oliver Greenall and Nigel Twiston-Davies did not yield any further victories and was last seen on the track in May last year.


For One Night Only will be looking to go one better in the concluding Maiden race having been denied by Largy Pearl on his first run for connections, both pulling well clear of the remainder which included Driveondonn, back in 4th and Patricks Hill who fell early. Whatwasigoingtosay and Atlantic Fleet both ran encouraging races on their first starts of the season and Jullou de Grissay is likely to show improved form.


High Easter racecourse is situated eight miles west of Chelmsford and set in a picturesque location, to the south of the village of High Easter. ( Sat Nav CM1 4QL )


Admission: Adults £15 cash only please (Children under 16 Free ). There will be tradestands, catering outlets, bar and bookmakers. Dogs on lead welcome.