By Graham Bishop

 The final meeting of the 2023/24 East Anglian season takes place at Fakenham racecourse on Sunday. This West and North Norfolk fixture is the only scheduled meeting to take place in Norfolk and racegoers will enjoy all the facilities associated with a professional course and there will be plenty of action going on supporting the six point-to-point steeplechase races that commence at 2pm. The afternoon’s proceedings commence with two pony races starting at 12.45pm to determine the winners of the East Anglian finals

The entry of 56 individual horses for the main steeplechase races includes many that are currently in good form and all six winners from the fixture at Higham on Good Friday have been entered in addition to last week’s Ladies Open winner, Tullys Touch.

A PPORA Club Members’ Conditions race for veteran and novice riders commences the point-to-point action, with the possibility of last year’s winning rider, Cian Murphy, doubling up this year.  He is currently linked with the ride on Red Maple on whom he steered to victory in a similar race earlier this season at Ampton. Killinkere, who has been placed many times since defeating Famous Clermont three years ago, finally returned to the top spot with victory in a Conditions race at Higham over Easter. Sum It Up who defeated Killinkere at Higham in February has not shown the same form since and was behind Bonamargy when the latter won with suitable underfoot conditions at Kimble.

The second race is a Level 3, PPORA Club Members’ Conditions race for which nine entries have been received which include recent winners Back It Up and Good Source. Back It Up won the 3 ½ miles Conditions race at Higham by the closest of margins, whilst Good Source won the Hunt Members race. Goleirihem will be seeking a third consecutive victory following an easy victory in a 2 ½ mile Restricted race and then a two-runner Hunt Members’ race at Kimble.  Connections would have been delighted with Happy Victory’s win on debut at Chaddesley Corbett, but he has not repeated that performance since. The Yellow Mini failed to stay and was pulled up in the race won by Back It Up, but prior to that had been runner-up on both starts this season.

Goleirihem also holds an entry for the Restricted race on this card, but it is the fourth winner from the Good Friday fixture at Higham that can also be found amongst the entries for this race.  Shanes Passion led throughout the race when winning the Maiden race at Higham holding off the persistent challenge of Vango Vick.  The following day at Kimble saw three of the entrants meet in the Restricted race won by Padjoes Legacy. Well P finished 2nd, Lunar Contact was 3rd and Largy Pearl finished 5th. Penniless, a stable companion of both Padjoes Legacy and Vango Vick, has run well on all three starts this season, most recently when runner-up in a 2m 5f Restricted race at Lockinge. Tango Arumba has not been seen since unseating his rider at the second open ditch at Higham in February, whilst leading the race and should not be discounted.

The Mixed Open race contains the final two winners from the fixture on Good Friday at Higham and both were victorious in Mixed Open contests.  I K Brunel won the “standard” Mixed Open race with General Arrow a distant 4th, whilst Precious Bounty won the Mixed Open race for “grass roots” riders’.  Captain Biggles and Tullys Touch could meet for the 3rd time this season, Captain Biggles having come out on top on both previous occasions so far, and this is likely to be a close encounter once more, Tullys Touch showing his wellbeing when winning very well at High Easter, last weekend. Deise Aba has won three times this season, whereas Clara Sorrento, who won this race last season, has only had one outing so far, finishing 2nd in a ‘match’ race at Garthorpe.  Castle Trump won well at Ampton in January, has had a break since finishing 3rd at Higham in February.

The Jockey Club and Retraining of Racehorses Veteran Horse Conditions race includes Killinkere who is entered in the first race, but if connections choose this race Killinkere may come up against stablemate Tiger’s Song, who ran at High Easter in March for the first time in three years where she finished a distant 3rd.  Peacocks Secret has yet to run in a point-to-point race at Fakenham, but has course experience having run in three Hunter ‘Chases around this course, winning the “Queen’s Cup” in 2021.  His run at Higham at Easter on his favoured racing surface was a vast improvement from his run on soft ground at Garthorpe.

Following an absence from the track for two years Ajay’s Ways made a first appearance in a point at Higham at Easter where he was pulled up, however his previous outing in May 2022 was a winning performance around this course in a handicap ‘chase. This was not his first win at Fakenham and the post-race comments from the trainer at the time was “the gelding had benefited from returning to Fakenham where it has previously won over course and distance”.

The Maiden race that concludes the action has a number of horses who have run well this season, but have yet to pass the winning post in front. Creapapy, Killard Point, Vango Vick and Whats The Solution have all finished 2nd at some stage this season, whilst Destination Mahler and Jersey Fromentin have finished 3rd.  Whatchagotder and Fiftyfifty have finished 4th, but one that is most interesting is the unraced 4-year-old Taymount who is out of the winning race mare Miss Ballantyne.  An interesting encounter, could prove to be a very competitive race, to end the day’s racing.


Throughout the afternoon there will be numerous trade stands to browse, as well as delicious food outlets, public bars, ice cream vendor and local bookmakers, all in attendance.

Fakenham racecourse is situated 2 miles west of the town NR21 7NY.

Admission costs are Adults £15 (cash only), Children under 16 free and dogs on short leads welcome.

 An afternoon, not to be missed to close a superb season.