• Ian Ender


Hexham start their new season with the traditional evening meeting, on predicted good ground, with the aid of watering, they are also expecting showers.

Our first runner is Ballycrystal in the over two and a half miles,in the handicap hurdle, with Becky Smith taking the ride. Ballycrystal has fallen a long way down the weights since his heyday when rated 130, just over two years ago.He has lost his way since then, dropping to 102, and has raced on three occasions since joining us. He has had a break since March,so if we can rekindle his interest, he looks very attractively weighted.

Commanding Spirit lines up in the three miles handicap chase at with Emma Chaston-Smith taking over from the injured Alain Cawley. Commanding Spirit has shown very little under rules, but has some very good form in Irish point to points, having won once, and been second five times. He has been off the track since January, but if the break has done him good, then a mark of just 79 looks very workable.

Max Cennetig runs in the same colours as our stable star Cornerstone Lad, and he has his second start of the season at in the two miles handicap chase with Becky Smith in the saddle.It wasn't until going over fences at Market Rasen in July of last year, that Max Cennetig got his head in front, from a mark of 74, he probably bettered that from a 12lb higher mark at Sedgefield the next time, when finishing a close up third.His first run back in July should have put him straight, but his mark of 84 means he will have to run right up to his best.

We have two runners in the final race of the evening at, the handicap hurdle over the extended two miles, and seven furlongs. Onlyfoolsownhorses will be ridden by Joe Colliver, when last seen over hurdles in 2017 he was second at Hexham from a 6lb higher mark.He has been chasing since, after a year out with injury, without any success, so this return to hurdles will hopefully give him a confidence boost, and set him up for his new season.We also run Maison D'Or in the race, he has had two recent runs on the flat, running well on both ocassions, but just lacking the flat soeed required.This return to hurdles will suit better, and Hexham's stiff track should bring out the best in him, with any rain helping, Emma Smith-Chaston, who won on him at Catterick last November takes off a very handy 7lb.

Good luck to the connections, A & S Associates, Mrs Jennifer Hill & Mrs Samantha Toomes, Mrs B M Lofthouse, The Cheltenham Trail & Proform Racing, and D Lees.

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