The Easter Sunday meeting at Ffos Las was blessed with warm sunshine and big crowds taking advantage of all the family-friendly entertainment. The going was good and five of the six races were won by Welsh-trained horses.
The mares-only 2m6f hurdle went to the Evan Williams stable, when Mac Bella (6/1) won her first race at the 16th attempt. Carrying at least 13 pounds less than her rivals, her jockey Adam Wedge sensibly set out to make all the running. Only for a few moments after the last flight did she look in any danger, when Lostnfound nearly caught up, but she pulled away again on the run-in to win by three and a quarter lengths.
Nobody wanted to go on when the starter sent the field for the 2m novices hurdle on their way. Eventually Sean Bowen took the plunge and pinched a four length lead on his father’s Statuario (11/8). Capone followed him but after the penultimate flight dropped away tamely, allowing the leader to stroll to a 21 length victory.
Half an hour later, the Bowens completed a double by taking the 2m4f chase. Farm The Rock led for most of the way, but was beginning to tire when joined by two of his rivals at the second last. There Ollie Vaar, who was going well, came down to leave Alf’N’Dor (7/2) in front. Sean kept him up to his work and had two and a half lengths in hand at the post.
Rod Millman’s Champagne Champ (4/5 fav) has finished in the first three in 18 of his 37 races and he improved that record by winning the 2m4f hurdle. Robbie Dunne sent him into the lead six furlongs out, and once he’d jumped the third last he effortlessly drew further and further away from the rest of the field. Never Equalled, unsuited by the ground, was 29 lengths back in second. The winner may go novice chasing next or revert to the flat.
Next came one of the Ffos Las season’s highlights, the West Wales National. Kingswell Theatre led from flagfall, but Pobbles Bay (5/1) was always going well within himself and appeared a big danger coming up the straight. Adam Wedge waited till the final fence before drawing alongside the leader, and shook up his mount to go a length and a half ahead on the run-in. It completed a double for Wedge and Evan Williams. Despite it being a three and a half mile contest, the winner didn’t appear to have a hard race.
The 2m6f maiden hurdle looked like a golden opportunity for Volcano, a beaten favourite in his last four outings, to get off the mark. He was 2/7 today, and took the lead two out only to be promptly brushed aside by Win My Wings, who sailed away to a 19 length success under Nick Scholfield. The Christian Williams-trained winner was returned at 7/1, although some 50/1 was available this morning.