Preview of the 2013 Wessex Area Point-to-Point Season
by Brian Armstrong and Bob Bracher
THE Wessex area point to point season begins on Sunday 6th January 2013 with the first of 23 meetings, the Larkhill Racing Club fixture. For a free colour leaflet detailing all the meetings in the Wessex area, send an SAE to Gill Armstrong, Pantiles, Penselwood, Wincanton, Somerset BA9 8NF.
This week we have a preview of some of the trainers, jockeys and horses to look out for.
Mary Tory has six pointers at Thornicombe near Blandford. She has retained Miss Midnight, four-race winner Crank Hill, who will again be partnered by Tim Hampton, and Battle Bridge, the winner of three races last season for Chloe Swaffield. Newcomers include Cantabilly, the winner of six races under Rules for the Ron Hodges stable.
Harriet Besent is preparing her June 2012 Ascot purchase Deimne at the family at Melcombe Bingham near Dorchester and plans to make her riding debut aboard the mare in Larkhill's Royal Artillery hunt race in January.
Monica and Norman Tory will race stable stalwart Gunner Be Quick and Carriglea Wood, a winner over fences for Richard Woollacott at Uttoxeter in the summer.
Okeford Fitzpaine trainer Sally Alner will race a small string of pointers headed by dual 2011/12 winner Master Medic, and Wincanton hunter chase winner Jayne's Crusader, who won a second consecutive Dick and Sue Woodhouse Memorial Hunter Chase in March 2012.
Michael Miller has Vintage Class, who was in the frame in three of his five outings last season, in his Hazelbury Bryan yard again this season. Newcomers include an unnamed four-year-old mare out of the prolific Miss O'Grady and Token Bay, who is owned by Michael's brother, Andrew.
Richenda Ford has five pointers for her parents, Kevin and Marina Snook, at her stables at Okeford Fitzpaine near Blandford. Trebudannon winner Roisini Bay returns after missing 2012, along with Steel Gold and Abayaan, who have both previously been campaigned under Rules. A three-year-old mare out of the Snooks' prolific Coolers Quest, and 2009 Trebudannon winner Somerby complete the yard.
James H Young plans to run three horses from his Brockenhurst stables in the New Forest. Hinchelsea Moor, the winner of a 20-runner Larkhill restricted last season, and Marlpit Oak are joined by Ascot purchase Roxboro Lodge, a full-brother to top chaser Central House and formerly owned by J P McManus. Stable jockey David Turner will again campaign Django Reinhardt, in the frame in half of his 2012 outings, from his Salisbury yard.