Point-to-point this weekend at Horseheath
A family day out at the Point-to-Point is an Easter tradition for many East Anglian households, so a large crowd in is prospect for the Puckeridge Point-to-Point at Horseheath, near Haverhill, on Saturday, writes James Crispe.
A total of 71 entries have been received for this six-race fixture, which gets under way at 1.30pm when there are 13 potential combatants in the Conditions Race and runs through until 4.25pm, when nine horses are engaged in the Novice Riders Race.
The steeplechasing will be preceded by three children’s pony races, using a section of the main course but bypassing the fences, the first starting at 12.15pm. And a charity flat race will be staged after the jumping has concluded.
The nine-entry Ladies Open Race could see a repeat of the corresponding race here on February 4th, when Blue Mountain Boy narrowly got the better of Goodnight Vienna and Oh Toodles. But a classy new ingredient may be provided by Top Smart, winner of six of his last seven starts.
The admirably consistent Ardkilly Witness is the form horse among the nine entries in the Mens Open having chased home the brilliant Hazel Hill – a dual subsequent hunter chase winner – on his previous visit here.
With Broken Eagle set to find the ground too soft, his toughest rivals could be Curraigflemens and Woodfleet, two hunter chase winners who have been below par so far this season, and Pair Of Jacks, who has some excellent National Hunt form to his name but may be ideally suited by a left-handed track.
Many of the leading fancies for the opening Conditions Race have alternative engagements in the Connolly’s Red Mills Intermediate Race. Welsh’s Castle won at the last meeting here and merits respect in whichever race he contests, as does Knockedoutloaded, who made Hawkhurst pull out all the stops when second on his reappearance at Ampton three weeks ago.
Steeles Terrace, unbeaten in two starts since joining the Bury St Edmunds yard of Andrew Pennock, will be stepping up in class if he takes up his Intermediate Race entry, while Pennock also has solid claims in the 16-entry Open Maiden race with Master Jeweller, who has most to fear from the Tom Ellis-trained pair of Holy Street and Latenightpass.
Horseheath is four miles west of Haverhill (post code CB21 4QF) with easy access straight off the A1307. There will be a licensed bar with live music and a selection of trade stands.
Admission on the day will be charged at £12 per head with under 17s allowed in for free. Early bird tickets, priced at £8.14 but operating a no refunds policy, are available at the website www.eventbrite.co.uk by putting ‘Horseheath Point To Point’ into the site’s search engine.