Paul Chinery continued his annus mirabilis when guiding Royal Action to victory in the Land Rover Men’s Open Race at the Suffolk Point-To-Point at Ampton yesterday (Sunday).
Chinery, from Great Yeldham, began the year as an enthusiastic 44-year-old jockey who, in a decade of honest endeavour, had managed a mere three victories.
Now, three months later and little more than half the way through the season, he has more than doubled his career total and is well on the way to landing the East Anglian Novice Rider’s Championship.
Similarly, Royal Action is enjoying an indian summer at the age of 11. Before this campaign he had won a mere three of his 33 jump starts but this five length defeat of Millenium Way meant that he has tasted victory in half of his six 2004 starts and finished second in the other three.
This was also his most prestigious triumph and means that Chinery, who believes that his mount is not ready to tackle hunter chase fences, will be at loggerheads with his father (and Royal Action’s owner), Aubrey, over whether to go for the Land Rover Final at Cheltenham on April 28.
Chinery also enjoyed a good ride aboard the much-improved Ginger Bug in the Restricted Race. But this partnership had to admit that they had found one too good in the shape of Mister Ringa, who overcame some shoddy jumping to score by 15 lengths.
Mister Ringa has always been held in high regard by his owner-trainer, Christopher Sporborg, from Bishop’s Stortford, but jumping does not come naturally to him and, on his previous start at Horseheath, he lost all chance when jockey Andrew Braithwaite was caught unawares at the start.
The Ampton Hall yard of Joe Turner – which is situated less than a mile from this Bury St Edmonds venue – hit form with a vengeance at Higham the previous Sunday with a treble and almost repeated the feat yesterday.
The James Owen-ridden Fine And Dandy got the ball rolling in the Members’ Race after Village Copper, his only remaining rival, was badly baulked and brought to a standstill by a loose horse at the open ditch on the first circuit.
The navy blue and white Turner silks were also carried to victory in the Ladies’ Open where Joe’s granddaughter, Zoe, partnered The Wiley Kalmuck to a 20-length verdict over Corston Joker.
But, in between, the Turner treble bid was foiled in thrilling fashion in the Confined Race when the front-running Bard of Drumcoo, trained and ridden by David Kemp, from Kilverstone, near Thetford, held off Owen, aboard Persian Hero, by a head after a thrilling neck-and-neck duel from the second last.
The most eye-catching performance of the day came in the closing Maiden race when Eurogaedel, trained at Raydon, near Hadleigh, overcame severe signs of greenness to edge out Arctic Snip by a length.
Well ridden by Wymondham’s Rupert Stearn, Eurogaedel is just five years of age and was only broken last August. He can do nothing but improve and is a horse to look out for in coming seasons.
Race One (Members’ Race):
1 J M Turner’s Fine and Dandy (Suffolk) (J Owen),
2 Mr and Mrs A Howland-Jackson’s Village Copper (Suffolk) (C Ward-Thomas,
Also: Neronian (ur) . A Distance. 6.50. W £ 1.30. SP 1-2 fav.
Race Two (Confined Hunts Race):
1 Bard of Drumcoo (Suffolk) (D Kem),
2 J M Turner’s Persian Hero (Suffolk) (J Owen),
3 Mrs L Gibbon’s Nordic Spree (Dunston Harriers) (N Bloom).
Also: The Glen Road (4), Gawngaddin (5), Castle Road (pu), Musical Hit (pu). Head, eight lengths. 6.40. W £ 1.80. SP 4-6 fav.
Race Three (Ladies’ Open Race):
1 J M Turner’s The Wily Kalmuck (Suffolk) (Miss Z Turner),
2 Mrs M Bousquet-Payne’s Corston Joker (East Essex) (Miss L Spence),
3 Mrs P M Sly’s Grand Ambition (Fitzwilliam) (Miss L Allan).
Also: Mister Audi (4), Borrow Mine (5), Buckland Bobby (pu), Pampered Gale (ro), Step in Line (pu). 20 lengths, 15 lengths. 6.33.W £ 2.20. SP evens fav.
Race Four (Men’s Open Race):
1 A G Chinnery’s Royal Action (East Essex) (P Chinery),
2 J M Turner’s Millenium Way (Suffolk) (J Owen),
3 H Hill’s Ballad (Granta Harriers) (A Williams).
Also: Exclusive Air (pu), Minino (pu). Five lengths, 15 lengths. 6.43. W £ 2. SP 15-8 (Minino 13-8 fav).
Race Five (Restricted Race):
1 Mrs C Sporborg’s Mister Ringa (Puckeridge) (A Braithwaite),
2 A G Chinery’s Giner Bug (East Essex) (P Chinery),
3 A Howland-Jackson’s Federal Case (Suffolk) (A Merriam).
Also: Camden Loch (4), Give Him A Chance (5), Nowornever (6), Coole Chief (pu), Henwyn (pu), Hi Tech Man (pu), Mr Moonbeam (su), Treble Trouble (pu). 15 lengths, 1½ lengths. 6.43. W £ 9 SP 4-1 (Nowornever 2-1 fav).
Race Six (Open Maiden Race):
1 Mrs J Stevens Eurogaedel (East Anglian Bloodhounds) (R Stearn),
2 J Buckle’s Aritc Snip (Essex and Suffolk) (N Moore),
3, The Good Craic Club’s No Nay Never (Waveney Harriers) (Miss A Bowles).
Also: Gunner Be True (4), Homeleigh Meadow (5), Assington Bay (pu), Carvilla (pu), Manhattan Storm (pu), Marsden (pu), Namche Bazaar (pu), Sharp Sarah (pu), Vivaldi Rose (ur). One length, 10 lengths. 6.48. W £10. SP 8-1 (Artic Snip 5-2 fav).