We send a team of eight up to Hexham on Wednesday, where the going is currently described as heavy.
We are doubly represented in the first at 12.45.pm, which is a 0-100 handicap chase, over two miles and four furlongs. Carrigeen Castle who was having his first start in seven months, showed up well until two out, when lack of a recent run took it's toll at Kelso 32 days ago. He now reverts back to fences on this his second start for us, with the champion jockey Brian Hughes retaining the ride.
Monaghan Boy is our other runner in the race, with Emma Smith-Chaston on board for the first time. Monaghan Boy has some bumper form which suggests that his current rating of 76 is a very attractive mark, but in a further seven runs over hurdles, and also on his debut over fences last time, he is yet to repeat those earlier good efforts.
We are also doubly represented at 1.15.pm, in the 0-110 handicap hurdle, over two miles and four furlongs. Applaus who is fast approaching 12 has been a wonderful servant over the years, but he does have his own ideas about the game. Emma Smith-Chaston who knows him inside out, and is in the saddle again, will keep him wide of the field, as he doesn't like being crowded, and if he is on a going day he has conditions in is favour.
Halpha Soleil is our other representative in the race. He was the winner of a French bumper back in November 2022, and has shown ability in each of his four hurdles starts for us. He is yet to place in any of his six hurdles starts, including two in France, but looks well handicapped on his bumper form. Jamie Hamilton will take the ride, on this his first start since April.
We also have two runners at 1.45.pm, in the 0-100 handicap chase, over the three miles. Ballylinch is having a wonderful season, having won at Sedgefield in October, before returning there 27 days ago from a 2lb higher mark, to finish a gallant runner up. Both those races were over three miles and three furlongs, so this stiff three miles will hold no fears. He will once again be partnered by Brian Hughes.
Dark Duomo is our other representative in the race. He is a seven year old who is having only his eighth racecourse start, having made his stable debut for us last time out, when getting no further than the second hurdle. Dark Duomo will now make his debut in a chase, with Emma Smith-Chaston in the saddle.
Walk My Way has her second start for us at 2.15.pm, in the maiden hurdle, over two and a half miles, with Emma Smith-Chaston retaining the ride. Walk My Way has run in seven Irish point to points to date, and on her stable debut at Sedgefield 27 days ago over hurdles, she looked as if the experience would do her good.
You Say Its Over is our final runner of the day at 3.20.pm, in the 0-100 handicap hurdle, over two miles and seven furlongs, where she will once again be partnered by Brian Hughes. You Say Its Over suggested that her time was near, with an excellent second over this course and distance 33 days ago, for which she now races from 1lb higher.
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Good luck to the connections, The Cheltenham Trail, The Golden Cuckoo, Mrs Gemma Hogg, T I S Partnership, John Burnett, Mr&Mrs Lees, D Pollitt, Driving Down Ltd, and Resdev.