Trainer Alan Hill has put out a plea to his colleagues to get behind the new series of four- and five-year-old maiden races.
'Use them or lose them' is the gist of Hill's message ahead of the first race in the series at Larkhill. It is sponsored by Tattersalls Cheltenham, although the 13-race programme involves shared-backing with fellow bloodstock auctioneers Goffs UK.
A member of the Point-to-Point Authority board and of the race planning committee, Hill (pictured above) said: "It is so important that the races are well supported. We have been asked for them and now we have them we need to get behind them.
"I'm hoping we get at least eight runners and a good competitive race on Sunday. I appreciate there could well be one or two very nice young horses in the line-up, but let's not run away from them. A horse can still be sold for good money if they finish placed behind a well-regarded winner."
Oxfordshire-based Hill referred to the higher weights which can be carried by runners as another advantage of the series and its age restriction, and he added: "I've got three three-year-olds and a four-year-old [who is unraced] in my yard and I fully intend to run them in the series during the season. I accept the ground has to be right, but let's hope we can avoid two- and three-runner races because of one good horse. That won't benefit anyone."
Sunday's Larkhill card opens at 11.30am with the Tattersalls Cheltenham Four- and Five-year-old Maiden Race, which has attracted an entry of 11 horses.