Saturday December 31st 2022
    The 2022/2023 East Anglian season kicks off in style and what better way to get your NYE started than a trip to Horseheath?!
    First race 11am. Dog show taking place alongside racing.
    11.00 Conditions (Level 3) 11 entries
    This looks likely to be very competitive. The Tom and Gina Ellis yard introduce an Irish import, Koyote, now locally ownedby the Signy and Marriage families, she has won two of her ten starts in points. She was far from disgraced in her only outingunder rules before departing at the last (regular fence) in a race over the banks at Punchestown.6 Philip Rowley has three entries. Forest Chimes has progressed steadily, and followed up a good run when third in the maiden at the Puckeridge here in February by landing a late season double at Chaddesley Corbett.6 Fracesco du Clos scored three times last season for rider
    Billy Chatterton. He has to shoulder a 3lb penalty under the conditions of this race. Slievegar was never able to land a blow on his seasonal debut at Chaddesley Corbett in early December, but will have derived benefit for the run. Toby McCain-Mitchell is a promising rider, and this combination boasted some decent form last season, including a win at the Banwen. On a going
    day he could make them all go here. Has an alternative entry at Larkhill. Frisson Collongues was a dual winner last season,and has an alternative entry at Larkhill, a course over which he won his maiden.Champion Chase was a 32 race maiden under rules, but took to pointing like a duck to water, landing a hat-trick on his first three starts, including a win here. He has an alternative entry at Larkhill. Springtown Lake has been rated as high as 142 over fences under rules. His last victory was over 2m 4f at Warwick in February 2020, and his best form is at that trip. He wouldn’t be the first classy ex rules performer that connections have revived when going pointing. Sum It Up landed a hat-trick on his first three outings last season, and was far from disgraced when taking on stronger company when placed in his last two outings. Voie Dans Voie has won three of his
    thirteen outings in points, and this half brother to top class hunter chaser Vaucelet,6 is admirably consistent. His close second at Kingston Blount on his penultimate start last season, gives him a very similar chance to Champion Chase in this contest.
    Selection: Koyote Alternative: Forest Chimes
    11.35 Maiden 9 entries
    Unlikely to be a big field here as five of the nine are also engaged in today’s finale, the Conditions Maiden. The one with outstanding claims is Dash Full Of Cash, who was formerly trained by Lucy Wadham and still wears the familiar yellow and blue Pat Betts silks. Never out of the first four but a beaten favourite on three of his five starts, he made a fine reappearance when finding just one too good at Chaddesley four weeks ago and should appreciate this track, where strong stamina is a prerequisite. One word of warning, he was said to have made a respiratory noise on his final outing for Wadham. Lagan Valley
    ran in the other (much faster run) division of the same Maiden Race at Chaddesley, finishing an excellent third on his debut for Julie Wadland. He is nicely bred and his modest earlier form was all between the flags in Ireland. Flashy Kate ran at all three Horseheath meetings last season, finishing 20 lengths third in this very race 12 months ago and then being touched off by a neck prior to pulling up on her other outing here. She lost her way a bit last spring but may be refreshed by her off-season holiday. Grenadine Save has finished runner-up on three of her last four outings including in Wales last month, but her form
    suggests that she may struggle to last this stiff three miles. A recruit from the Olly Murphy yard, Fairly Famous is the pick of two Tom Ellis/Gina Andrews entries but still did not show enough in 2m 4f hurdles to make him a likely winner here. There
    are stamina doubts over the 2m Garthorpe flat race winner Tango Pete, who has finished second over 2m4f already this term. Threeunderthree, a cheap recruit from the Irish pointing field for his jockey, Harry Myddelton, is in good hands but may not be ready to break his duck just yet. There is not enough in the pedigrees of the two debutants, Chosen Day and Prince of Newton,to suggest either will begin their careers with a bang.
    Selection: Dash Full Of Cash Alternative: Lagan Valley
    12.10 Conditions (Novice Riders) 14 entries
    A reasonable entry of 14 for this novice riders contest. As usual fitness plays a part in these races and it’s worth factoring in horses who have already run this season. Agamemmon, Commanche Red, Debece, Earlshill and Quarenta have all had at least one outing this season. Commanche Red won for the promising rider Molly Landau when deadheating with Shantou Flyer at Larkhill last month. Debece hails from the Nick Pearce yard who do very well in this type of race. He was a well beaten 3rd on his seasonal reappearance at Knightwick when sent off as favourite last month but should come on for that run. Agamemmon pulled up on his seasonal reappearance at Chaddesley Corbett earlier this month in a mixed open. This is an easier contest however. Fran Poste has two entered in this, both due to be ridden Amber Jackson-Fenell. She’s one of the most experienced riders in this contest. For Rita is the higher rated and she was
    2nd here last season when beaten 1½ L by Clondaw Rigger in a
    novice riders contest last January. The other Poste runner is Champion Chase. He’s a previous course winner having landed the restricted in the January meeting here when beating Master Templar by a Sht Hd. Anything from the Tom Ellis yard merits respect and he runs Bawnmore in this race. He won last season at Woodford , beating Lagonda by ¾ L when ridden by Gina Andrews and is due to be ridden here by Ellie Holder. Earlshill pulled up on his seasonal outing at Chaddesley Corbett earlier this week and is unlikely to run today. Groundunderrepair is a previous course winner but that win came in February 2020. Quite a tricky contest to call but we will side with recent Larkhill scorer Commanche Red as our selection ahead of Debece who comes from a yard that does well in novice rider’s races. Agamemmon will find this easier that his previous outing and could also go well.
  • Selection: Commanche Red Alternative: Debece
    12.45 Ladies Open – 9 entries
    Latenightfumble could be the one to get Gina Andrews off the mark for the season, on a course where she is all-time leading lady rider. Latenightfumbleenjoyed a marvellous campaign last season winning three points plus a Cheltenham Hunter ‘Chase victory, narrowly defeating Go Go GeronimoAzzuri goes extremely well for Miss Palin and gave Heidi her first winner at Higham, last January, but may prefer sounder ground conditions than he is likely to encounter at Horseheath. Commanche Redwon a Veteran Horse Conditions race at Larkhill for trainer Jenny Gordon and will be confidently handled by Molly Landau but is more likely to line-up for the novice riders’ contest. Getting Closerwas very consistent last season for Izzie Marshall and trainer Alan Hill. Ran 2ndto Kaproyale at the corresponding fixture last year and will be a strong contender, up against the mare Latenightfumble.
    Selection: Latenightfumble Alternative: Getting Closer
    1.20 Mens Open – 14 entries
    Three of the entrants were successful at the corresponding fixture last year. Kaproyale won the opening conditions race, Mr Love won the novice riders race and Fumet D’oudairies won the ladies open race, whilst another entrant, Early Retirement was beaten a head when finishing second in the men’s open race. Each went on to further success; Fumet D’oudairies won a further two ladies opens and the ladies hunter chase at Stratford. Kaproyale’s win in the conditions race was not replicated at the following fixture at Horseheath but thereafter he was well placed to secure a further four victories. Mr Love won his first three races including two around this course in novice riders races and then stepped up to open company, winning one and being placed in the other two. Early Retirement failed to. perform on his next outing but went on to win three small field races and be placed in another three. Dragon D’estruval won three points last season including one around Horseheath, and along with Mr Love has had the benefit of a run this season. Mighty Stowaway changed hands after finishing third in the Cheltenham Foxhunter but he did not repeat that performance on a return trip to Cheltenham in April and it may be best to watch his return. In addition we have a number of horses entered that have been running under rules which have been purchased to run in points.
    Selection: Fumet D’oudairies Alternative: Mr Love
    1.55 Restricted – 6 entries
    A rather disappointing 6 entries and with ground on the soft and challenging side look for stamina and form for a stiff test. 7yr old Bloodstonewon the 10 runner Maiden from the front here on good to soft ground at this meeting in 2021 but having lost places fell on his last outing at Mollington in April, he may need the run but a place finish is possible. D’Last Spez from the Ellis yard won his Maiden in Ireland on good ground in May following 2 pulled ups but may need the run here and could be exposed here on this testing galloping track. Goleirihem over this season from Olly Murphy’s yard and some hurdling form and now from the Hill yard won the Chaddesley Corbett Maiden earlier this month on good to soft ground and will have come on for the run. 7yr. Hung Jury from the Poste yard was outpaced on his Restricted runs at Chaddesley Corbett in May & June on good watered ground so may find this field on soft ground a real challenge but a place is possible. The experienced 10yr old Midnight Jitterbug was t.o. in both his 2 Restricted runs in No. & Dec. and will possibly struggle again in this company. 6yr. Scattercash from the Cameron yard in N. Shropshire was t.o. and pu on her last run in heavy ground in the short Restricted at Ffos Las following her short Maiden win on heavy ground in March 2020 when in the Ellis yard so stamina here may find her out.
    Selection: Goleirihem Alternative: Bloodstone
    2.30 Maiden Conditions – 10 entries
    A small but select field for this Maiden Conditions race. All Is True is trained by Tom Ellis so warrants respect, he is related to a previous Oak Partnership horse in Marble Moll who was very disappointing. He has run to a fair level of form in his three starts in Irish point to points, improving for each run, he does not seem to finish out his races so running over a stiff three miles is not certain to suit. Dash Full Of Cash has already run this year so fitness should not be an issue. He finished second to an exposed horse in a weak Maiden that was 8 seconds slower than the second division. That brings us to our selection Lagan Valley who ran a race full of promise on his debut finishing third in Division 2 of the Maiden at Chaddesley Corbett which was 8 seconds faster than the first division. It looked the much hotter race and the timing also suggested that was the case, he just weakened in the last furlong but with normal improvement and fitness assured he looks the one to beat. His main danger looks like it could be Maskadam who has his first start for Dale Peters. He has run three times in Irish points and improved on each start finishing 3rd in his last race. On breeding it does not suggest that he wants a stiff three miles, and he might benefit from better ground, so the soft going is a concern if conditions dry up he holds a strong chance.
    Selection: Lagan Valley Alternative: Maskadam
    Race 1: Koyote / Forest Chimes
    Race 2: Dash Full of Cash / Lagan Valley
    Race 3: Commanche Red / Debece
    Race 4: Latenightfumble / Getting Closer
    Race 5: Fumet D’oudaires / Mr Love
    Race 6: Goleirihem / Bloodtsone
    Race 7: Lagan Valley / Maskadam