CARTMEL CHALLENGES

Cartmel Jockeys Challenge in association with The Swan Hotel & Spa, Newby Bridge

 

EVEN BY his own high standards, the second stage of the Barbecue Meeting on Monday July 23 was something special for jockey Brian Hughes as he practically put to bed the Cartmel Jockeys Challenge for another year.

A sensational four-timer means that Hughes is now 25 points clear at the top, which is practically an unassailable lead ahead of the final two days in the competition sponsored by the Swan Hotel and Spa Newby Bridge.

The defending champion was in irresistible form as he rattled off winner after winner starting with Beach Break in the Paul Savage Maiden Hurdle, Alfie’s Choice in the William Hill Leading Racecourse Bookmaker Handicap Hurdle, Dear Sire in the Weatherbys Racing Bank Beginners Chase and Raise A Spark in the Racegoers Club 50th Anniversary Handicap Chase.

Hughes is bidding to win the Challenge for a third time in four years and his sensational performance means that amateur Becky Smith needs to ride eight winners or third placed Richard Johnson nine at the August meeting to catch him and you could get astronomical odds against either of those things happening.

Miss Smith must have been disappointed to have missed out on the ride on Micky Hammond’s winner Shake It Up, which went to Alain Cawley, but she still holds second place by three points from champion jockey Richard Johnson, who drew a blank on the Monday.

Whatever happens on the final two days, it has been a brilliant performance by Becky as a lady amateur to be in the shake-up all season.

Jockey

Pts

Brian Hughes

42

Miss Becky Smith

17

Richard Johnson

14

Sean Bowen

12

Callum Bewley

8

Alain Cawley

8

Ross Chapman

8

Lorcan Murtagh

8

Craig Nichol

8

Sean Quinlan

8

Harry Reed

8

Grant Cockburn

6

Robert Hogg

6

Nathan Moscrop

6

Henry Brooke

5

Jamie Hamilton

5

John Kington

5

Miss Amie Waugh

5

Lucy Alexander

4

Tommy Dowson

4

Alan Johns

4

Finian O’Toole

4

Miss Emma Todd

4

Mr Peter Bryan

3

Aidan Coleman

3

Sam Coltherd

3

Jonathan England

3

Steven Fox

3

Bryony Frost

3

Mr Billy Garritty

3

Barry Geraghty

3

Sean Houlihan

3

Miss Jodie Hughes

3

Wayne Hutchinson

3

Conor King

3

Richie McLernon

3

Tom O’Brien

3

Conor O’Farrell

3

Mr Dale Peters

3

Kielan Woods

3

Alison Clarke

2

Joe Colliver

2

Kevin Dowling

2

Miss Laura Fenwick

2

AP Heskin

2

AE Lynch

2

Mr Luca Morgan

2

Mr Tommie O’Brien

2

Jack Quinlan

2

Miss Immy Robinson

2

Alice Stevens

2

Harry Stock

2

David Bass

1

James Bowen

1

Paddy Brennan

1

Danny Cook

1

Derek Fox

1

Mr Ben Furnival

1

Colm McCormack

1

Adam Short

1

Ross Turner

1

Cartmel Trainers Challenge, a trophy and a trip to Champagne

 

FOUR TIMES winner Donald McCain took a huge step towards taking this season’s Cartmel Trainers Challenge and a fabulous trip for two to the cellars of Cartmel’s champagne partner Louis Roederer in Champagne* as well as the Andrea Robinson Memorial Trophy at the barbecue meeting.

Having opened a gap at the top on the Saturday, McCain cemented his position with a hat-trick of winners that have left him in pole position to reclaim the crown he last won in 2014.

After a quick start with Beach Break in the Paul Savage Maiden Hurdle to open Monday’s card, McCain then followed up with Dear Sire in the featured Weatherbys Racing Bank Beginners Chase and Raise A Spark in the Racegoers Club 50th Anniversary Handicap Chase.

McCain was quick to play down his winning chances as there are the two days of the August Bank Holiday fixture to go, but it will take something special from the chasing group to overhaul a 13 points gap now.

Micky Hammond and Peter Bowen continue to lead the chase and each collected three points on Monday with Hammond winning the Watch Racing UK Anywhere Handicap Chase with Shake It Up while Bowen had a second and a third.

They are the only ones with a real chance of stopping the McCain juggernaut, but either will need four winners and at least one placed horse besides from the last 14 races of Cartmel’s season.

Trainer

Pts

Donald McCain

36

Micky Hammond

23

Peter Bowen

22

James Moffatt

11

Keith Dalgleish

10

Dianne Sayer

9

Tristan Davidson

8

Sophie Leech

7

Julia Brooke

6

Sam England

6

John Hodge

6

Charlie Longsdon

6

Rebecca Menzies

6

Mark Walford

6

Simon Waugh

6

James Ewart

5

Alan King

5

Jonjo O’Neill

5

Martin Todhunter

5

Tim Vaughan

4

Nick Alexander

3

Guy Brewer

3

Barbara Butterworth

3

Stuart Coltherd

3

Brian Ellison

3

Gary Hanmer

3

Alan Hill

3

Philip Hobbs

3

Stef Keniry

3

Graeme McPherson

3

Neil Mulholland

3

John Quinn

3

Kenneth Slack

3

James Walton

3

Gemma Anderson

2

Jennie Candlish

2

Henry Daly

2

Chris Fairhurst

2

Mrs S Fenwick

2

Joanne Foster

2

Henry Hogarth

2

Kenny Johnson

2

Philip Kirby

2

Tom Lacey

2

Seamus Mullins

2

John J O’Shea

2

Mathew J Smith

2

Jamie Snowden

2

Robert Stephens

2

Simon West

2

Maurice Barnes

1

Gillian Boanas

1

Sarah-Jayne Davies

1

Richard Edwards

1

Alex Hales

1

Ben Haslam

1

Ruth Jefferson

1

Neil King

1

Liam Lennon

1

Mark McNiff

1

Olly Murphy

1

Barry Murtagh

1

Andrew Nicholls

1

Sue Smith

1

Jackie Stephen

1

David Thompson

1

Jane Walton

1

The Margaret Sexton Memorial Trophy for outstanding achievement of the Year

 

AS THE Margaret Sexton Trophy is awarded for either outstanding achievement or a magic moment at Cartmel, there was only one possible nominee to join the list from which this year’s winner will eventually be chosen after the second stage of the Barbecue Meeting.

Jockey Brian Hughes fulfilled both of the criteria as he completed a sensational four-timer on the day with three wins for trainer Donald McCain and another for Keith Dalgleish.

Hughes gave a master class in how to ride Cartmel and while it obviously helps to be on good horses, it still requires the jockey putting them in the right positions and having the ability to get a bit extra out of his mount when it matters.

He showed both aspects in the rides he gave to Beach Break, Alfie’s Choice, Dear Sire and Raise A Spark as he got full compensation for his bad luck two days earlier when Volcanic fell at the last with the William Hill Cumbria Crystal Cup apparently in the bag.

It was quite a weekend for jockeys named Hughes as Saturday’s nomination had gone to amateur Jodie Hughes, who found it third time lucky when she won the diamond pendant that goes to the winning rider in Britain’s most valuable handicap hurdle restricted to lady jockeys, the Banks Lyon Jewellers Lady Riders Handicap Hurdle..

She had led from flag fall on Wells De Lune and when Innocent Touch ranged up as a massive threat at the last, galvanised her mount on the long run in to land the prize. Her sheer exuberance at finally landing the prize was enough to earn her the nomination.

Brian Hughes and Jodie Hughes now join Lucy Alexander, Simon Waugh, Alan Hill, Ben Greensdale and the Bambi Du Noyer team of trainer John Hodge and jockey Grant Cockburn on this year’s list.

The overall winner will be chosen from nine nominees – one for each meeting of the season, with the winner taking the Margaret Sexton Trophy plus a cash prize of £500 with a further £250 donated to both St Mary’s Hospice and the British Thoroughbred Retraining Centre in the winner’s name.

Previous winners of the Trophy are Maurice Barnes (2014), Keith and Helen Bowron (2015), Henry Brooke (2016) and the Slack/Sayer family last year.

The Hadwins Motor Group Mares Hurdle Series

 

Another thrilling finish could be on the cards in the Hadwins Mares Only Hurdle Series at Cartmel this season when the fifth and final round comes along at the August Bank Holiday fixture.

After the drama last season when Stuart Crawford landed the £1,000 bonus by a single point from Iain Jardine, it could be tight at the top again this time when just four points between leader Dianne Sayer and Donald McCain.

Mrs Sayer has had a winner, a second and a third in the competition so far, but was without a runner in round four on Saturday while McCain was looking for a second win from his smart mare Secret Escape to propel him to the top of the table.

But despite starting a hot favourite at 5-4, Secret Escape could never strike a blow at the runaway leader Hermanus and, in the end, was all out to take third place and three points.

That was not enough to peg back Dianne, although with just four points between them now, a second place would be good enough to give McCain the prize should the leader draw another blank next month.

And neither can sit too comfortably as Nick Alexander, Micky Hammond and Stef Keniry are all within striking distance on 12 points meaning a winner could take them to the top of the table.

With points awarded on the basis of 12 for a winner, six for second, three for third and two for any other runner, numbers of runners can be important as Stuart Crawford showed last season when running two horses in the final round to edge home.

The leaders after round four are:-

TRAINER

TOTAL

Diane Sayer

21

Donald McCain

17

Nick Alexander

12

Micky Hammond

12

Stef Keniry

12

Olly Murphy

7

Tom Lacey

6

James Moffatt

4

Rebecca Menzies

3

Gemma Anderson

2

Stuart Coltherd

2

Susan Corbett

2

Chris Grant

2

Tom Gretton

2

Lisa Harrison

2

Iain Jardine

2

Noel C Kelly

2

Martin Todhunter

2

James Walton

2

Alistair Whillans

2

Maurice Barnes

2

How do the Challenges work?

Every jockey who has a ride and every trainer who has a runner at Cartmel is automatically included. The challenges work on a points system with three points for a win, two  points for second and one point for third. Come the last race meeting of the season and the Jockey with most points after the last race is crowned champion and receives a luxury weekend break for two at the Swan Hotel & Spa. The top Trainer receives the Andrea Robinson Memorial Trophy.

Results will be kept up to date in each racecard and on a notice board outside the weighing room and on the website. 

 

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