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Track Talk - 16/05/21


25 May 2023

The summer might be taking a while to show up in terms of the weather but for our team at the racecourse, we are about to embark on a very busy period for the business.

There are four race meetings in June and at the end of the month we host the three major concerts with Lionel Richie, Lewis Capaldi and George Ezra. The feature fixture of the month is Abba Race Night on Saturday 10th June. As well as seven races, there is a performance from the excellent Abba tribute show Waterloo after racing. They will be on stage for 90 minutes. There are range of ticket and hospitality packages available.

Other dates for your diary are Ladies Evening on Friday 14th July and Caribbean Night on Friday 28th July. Full details are on the website.

Adam Wedge (photographed) won the biggest jump race of the month, Saturday’s £100,000 Swinton Handicap Hurdle at Haydock.  His guv’nor Evan Williams has won it four times, but on this occasion he was riding Kerry Lee’s Black Poppy.  The horse was in top form following a Cheltenham victory in April.  He hardly ever runs a bad race and this was his fifth success in 13 starts, four of them at this time of year. 

Wedge’s only ride on Sunday was Happy Index, in a 2m5f hurdle at Ludlow, when he got down to his minimum weight of ten stone two pounds.  The horse had gone close over course and distance in April in his first run in a handicap.  As a five-year-old, with only five races under his belt, he had scope to do better and gave Wedge another success – this time for trainer Paul Webber.

The in-form jockey, who last week rode his 500th career winner, is off to Perth on Thursday for some good rides for Laura Morgan, who supplied him with 14 winners last season.

There was further joy for the Welsh later on that Haydock card when Flying Fortune won her second bumper for Peter and Sean Bowen.  The penalised four-year-old filly went clear in the final quarter of a mile, relishing the fast ground.  Knowing how well the Bowens school their horses, she can bring them more success if she goes over hurdles in the summer.

The Bernard Llewellyn stable struck with a winner on Saturday night at Leicester. They took the mile and a half seller with Zuraig, with Jordan Williams riding. The horse has been hard work for the stable, for he bled on his first start for them in October and has developed a habit of starting slowly.  Tried over a longer distance this time, he got to the front with a mile to go and never looked back. 

Sheila Lewis’s Tom O’Roughley resumed winning ways at Warwick.  Since joining her yard a year ago he was consistent without winning, coming fourth four times in a row, until he broke his duck at Worcester in a three mile chase in September.  He couldn’t follow up over course and distance three weeks later. 

Sent off at 11/1 refreshed by a seven month break, Tom’s jumping was sketchy early on, but he warmed to his task and jockey Lorcan Murtagh urged him into a clear lead leaving the back straight.  Although he faded in the closing stages, he was able to hang on by a neck from stablemate Junior Massini.  The third horse, Joey Steel, was trained by Christian Williams to make a Welsh 1-2-3, all at double-figure odds; the Tricast paid more than £4,000.

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