Our next meeting at Ffos Las is this coming Sunday 26th September – it’s the final flat meeting of the year. There are now eight races starting at 2.10pm and finishing at 5.50pm. We also have two pony races – at 1.10pm and 1.30pm. Advance tickets are £20.
Following the latest Welsh Government update, we do not believe a Covid pass will be required for any of our remaining fixtures in 2021 including the Welsh Champion Hurdle meeting on Saturday 16th October. Further details will be announced on our website this week.
It was a fabulous Friday for the Welsh at Newton Abbot last week with three winners for different yards.
The 2/1 joint favourite Joey Steel got the ball rolling for Christian Williams by overcoming a few errors to land the 3m2f handicap chase comfortably. His form this year is 2121. His regular pilot Nick Scholfield was on board, whereas stable jockey Jack Tudor partnered the third horse, Cage Of Fear. That one faded to finish 20 lengths adrift in third place.
An hour later Scholfield was back in the winners’ enclosure with Borak, who defied odds of 100/1 to win a two mile hurdle. The nine-year-old was having his first outing since joining Monmouthshire trainer Deborah Faulkner two months ago. Previously he’d been with Bernard Llewellyn for six years, winning six times, but not since October 2019. Freshened up by a 147-day break, and running for the second time after wind surgery, he was going conspicuously well half a mile out and the main danger was a loose horse who preceded him on the approach to the penultimate flight of hurdles. Fortunately, he ran out and left Borak to saunter to a comfortable length and a half success.
The glorious uncertainty of racing was typified by the events of the 3m2f novice chase. The 1/12 favourite Eglantine Du Seuil, a Cheltenham Festival winner over hurdles in 2019, led, jumping markedly to the right, a major disadvantage on the tight left-handed Newton Abbot circuit. She must have lost 30 lengths before forfeiting all chance with two violent rightward leaps in the home straight, the latter causing her jockey to lose his irons. That left the second favourite Arc Of Bubbles with a narrow lead at the final fence, only to hit it hard. Creeping up on the rail was Connor Brace on the 40/1 shot Sister Raphael, who pounced on the run-in to poke her nose in front in the last few strides. It was the five-year-old mare’s debut for Pyle based trainer John Flint after three modest runs in Irish points.
On Sunday Bernard Llewellyn sent two horses to Hamilton Park, between Glasgow and Edinburgh, and hopefully paid for the petrol when one of them, Port Or Starboard, finished second at 33/1.
James Bowen’s trip to Plumpton that day for a single ride proved fruitful, as Impulsive One strolled to a 12-length victory in the juvenile hurdle. It was his ninth winner for Nicky Henderson this season, more than twice as many as in the whole of 2020/21. Losing his claim was quite a setback, as can be seen from his annual scores of 58, 72, 33 and 35 but with 23 so far in the current campaign it seems the young rider’s career is regaining significant momentum.