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Record Return

Altruism, unbeaten in three runs at Cartmel, will put his record on the line in the £20,000 Marstons Pedigree Handicap Hurdle on Friday, the first stage of the track’s ‘Real Ale Champions Meeting’.

After winning a beginners chase at the opening meeting last month, Altruism reverts to hurdling for Friday’s big event. With two victories over hurdles to his name in 2015, Altruism clearly loves it round his local track and joins stable companion Captain Brown as Moffatt plans a dual raid on the big prize. 

“I considered a novice chase for Altruism at Hexham, but am very happy to bring him back over hurdles, while Captain Brown didn’t stay last time and will be more of a force over a strongly run two miles as this will probably be. 

“Altruism likes to force the pace and Captain Brown needs to be held up, so I have two bites at the cherry!” said Moffatt. 

However, both are likely to face some stern opposition with Irish star Gordon Elliott likely to saddle Tempo Mac, while the big southern yards of Nicky Henderson, David Pipe, Dan Skelton and Nigel Twiston Davies all have entries for the race. 

Lambourn maestro Henderson has earmarked One For The Guv’Nr for this race as the seven-year-old continues his comeback after a spell on the sidelines. 

An outstanding novice two seasons ago when he won four times and was second twice from his first six starts, things went wrong after he ran at Aintree on Grand National day. 

One For The Guv’Nr has run only once since, showing up really well at Huntingdon in February before a stumble at the last saw him unseat jockey Andrew Tinkler, but he had shown enough to suggest he will be a big player on Friday. 

The £20,000 Oakmere Homes Handicap Chase will be the centrepiece of Cartmel’s second Sunday race meeting, to be staged this weekend. 

The seven race card sees the second running of the Oakmere Homes Handicap Chase, won last season by the Mickey Hammond-trained Alderbrook Lad, who made all the running to beat Gordon Elliott’s Irish raider Definite Ruby, a winner at Punchestown this year. 

The Sunday meeting also features the latest round of the Hadwins Mares Hurdle series, which carries a bonus of £1,000 for the mare collecting most points across the five-race competition at Cartmel this season.

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Friday, July 21, 2017

Top trainer Skelton targets big race double

Dan Skelton, who has made a flying start to the campaign with more than 40 winners on the board already, is targeting a big race double with two of his early-season stars on the opening day of Cartmel’s Barbecue Meeting tomorrow.

Skelton’s 41 winners so far is 17 more than the Jonjo O’Neill, who is currently in second place for winners and more than the double the early season tally of his former boss, the champion trainer Paul Nicholls.

Four of those wins have been clocked up by Petrou, who is unbeaten since joining Skelton from Ben Case. The seven-year-old will attempt to complete the five timer in Cartmel’s most valuable race of the year, the £27,000 guaranteed Totescoop6 Cumbria Crystal Cup Handicap Hurdle.

“Petrou is on a roll and is hopefully not done with yet, he will have a tougher task as is mark has gone up 21lbs since he won on his debut for me at Stratford two months ago, but I am hopeful for tomorrow.” said Skelton.

To help protect his mark, Petrou switched to fences last time after three straight handicap wins over hurdles and he took that in his stride with a game defeat of River Of Intrigue at Uttoxeter.

The talented Bridget Andrews takes the ride on Petrou as she will on the front-running Ravens Hill, who has won two of his three races since joining Skelton in March and who goes in the Banks Lyon Jewellers Lady Riders Handicap Hurdle.

The only handicap hurdle in the country restricted to lady jockeys, the race not only carries £10,000 in added prize money, but for the winning rider the bonus of a stunning piece of diamond jewellery worth in excess of £5,000.

“Ravens Hill got off the mark for me at Sedgefield and followed up at Uttoxeter, I am not sure how he will handle the ground but he should be competitive” said Skelton.

The seven-race card gets underway with the Cartmel Lodge Park Novices Hurdle at 1.55pm.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Cartmel geared up for big day of the season

Cartmel is geared up for one of its major days of the season on Saturday when the most valuable race run at the racecourse, the £27,000 Totescoop6 Cumbria Crystal Cup Handicap Hurdle will take centre-stage.

 

Now in its sixth season, the race has quickly become established as one of the most competitive races in the Cartmel calendar as evidenced by the fact that it was only last year, when Eshtiaal won for Irish trainer Gordon Elliott, that a favourite obliged.

 

Saturday is the opening day of the traditional Barbecue Meeting, which continues on Monday, July 24 and as well as the big race features the only handicap hurdle in the country restricted to lady jockeys.

 

The Banks Lyon Jewellers Lady Riders Handicap Hurdle not only carries £10,000 in added prize money, but for the winning rider the bonus of a stunning piece of diamond jewellery worth in excess of £5,000.

 

With the Champagne Louis Roederer Handicap Chase, which is a qualifier for the Northern Lights Middle Distance Chase Series and the latest round of the Hadwins Motor Group Mares Hurdle Series which carries a £1,000 bonus prize for the winning stable, Saturday’s meeting is action packed.

 

The seven-race card gets underway with the Cartmel Lodge Park Novices Hurdle at 1.55pm.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

The Four-Nations Challenge Amateur Riders Handicap Hurdle, Sunday 2nd July.

The purpose of this race is to promote competition and fraternity between amateur jockeys from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Trainers with runners in this race are therefore encouraged to put up an amateur jockey from their home-nation - so a Welsh Trainer should (as a preference) put up a Welsh jockey, a Scottish trainer a Scottish jockey, an English trainer and English jockey and an Irish trainer and Irish Jockey.