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CARNIVAL ZAIN TO RUN IN THE THIRSK HUNT CUP.

We have four runners at two meetings on Saturday. We run two at Thirsk on what is their biggest day of their season, where the going is currently good. and we also send two up to Hexham for the start of the new jumps season in the north, where the ground is currently described as good to soft, good in places.


Carnival Zain runs in the prestigious Thirsk Hunt Cup at 3.40.pm, which is a Class 2, 0-105 handicap, over the mile, with Aiden Brookes who won on him last August back in the saddle. Carnival Zain was a revelation last season, winning on five occasions, which saw his mark climb from 66 to his current rating of 91. This will be a tough ask for Carnival Zain as he is still 5lb above his last winning mark, and comes into the race without a run in over six months, but on the plus side he has drawn well, will like the ground, and of course remains open to further improvement.


Myboymax was a comfortable winner from a 2lb higher mark than now at Wolverhampton in December, but he has not run up to his usual high standards in any of his four starts since, which sees him back down to an attractive mark of 71. This step back up in trip is a plus, as his best recent form as come at one mile and six furlongs. He goes to post for the 4.15.pm, in a 0-70 handicap, with Aiden Brookes retaining the ride.


We also have two runners at Hexham, where Bannockburn will make her stable debut at 6.40.pm, in a two miles novice hurdle, with Conor O'Farrell taking the ride. To date Bannockburn has had three runs in France, where she ran with promise on her debut in a bumper, and then she also showed ability in two juvenile hurdles, the latest was in December. We should have a better idea of where we are with her after this run.


At the age of 11 Applaus is running better than he has since he was half that age, and last time out at his favourite track Carlisle, he was an excellent second, for which he has been raised a further 3lb. Applaus will give his best provided that he can run a little wide of his opponents, as he doesn't like to be crowded, this is a ploy which has worked well, as he won twice last season, and also finished runner up twice. The one worry is the ground, as he wouldn't want it to dry out, as almost all his best form is with soft in the description. He runs at 8.40.pm, in a 0-130 handicap hurdle, over two miles, with our stable conditional jockey Josh Thompson able to take 10lb off his back.


To keep up to date with all the latest happenings at Oakwood Stables, Sharp Hill, and Curlew, click on 'NEWS' at www.mickyhammondracing.


Good luck to the connections, Newroc & Partner, Anthony Bithell, John Connor & Partner, and Mrs Gemma Hogg.

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