The Welsh season came to a chilly end at Trecoed; with attendees travelling into the depths of West Wales to enjoy racing for the final time this season...
It has been a strange year of racing in the Principality; with an early start and then a lull in the proceedings unintentionally extended by the typical Welsh weather. Some meetings were lost from the calendar altogether while others tried and tried again only to have attempts thwarted. Those that were successful enjoyed meetings free of Covid regulations and healthy crowds; Hunter Certificates increased as racing started to get underway, and owners saw the conviction that the sport was carrying on. Already in the sixth month of this year horses will be turned out to find themselves called up for duty in a matter of months as the season starts again.
One horse happy to be putting his feet up for a break will be Looksnowtlikebrian (IRE) who took the track twelve times this season, only once finishing out of the places and winning four of those starts. He has been a stalwart for young jockey Oisin Radford and hopefully this will not be the eleven-year-olds last season as there is surely more to come. On Saturday he ran out the length and three quarters victor of the Men’s Open with odds on favourite Ramble On (IRE) back in second. Coquin Mans (FR) has a consistent but frustrating season for owner trainer Bobby Thomas having been denied victory on the line on two occasions.
It was a good day for Novice jockeys as sixteen-year-old Sophie Kitts steered home her first winner aboard the Wynn Morris trained Taaffe’s Castle (IRE) beating the well fancied Spencer Moon (IRE) back into second place. This was only Sophies second ride having finished placed on the same horse eight days earlier. With on the floor advice from Scott Malson, Sophie secured the dream start to her racing career.
The horses from the Castlemorris yard are always particularly well turned out and Taaffe’s Castle was no exception. Also looking his usual smart self was Ardview Boy (IRE). The thirteen-year-old repaid his owners faith in him by winning the Hunt Members race under Scott Malson. Scott himself has had an excellent season winning the West Wales Men’s Title, The West Wales Novice Title, and the overall Welsh Area Novice Trophy. He has also tied for the Sport of Kings Trophy. Something that he probably would only have dared dream he would achieve at the start of the year.
A slightly higher prize was on the mind of the Champion elect James King as he steered Villanesque (IRE) to victory in the Restricted race. The Luke Price trained mare beat the former Bradley Gibbs charge Whotheman (IRE) into second with Whiskey for Jack (IRE) back in third. Another successful weekend in the saddle has confirmed that James will retain his National Title; and on the day at Trecoed he scored a treble by following up his win on Villanesque he followed up with victories on Blackfyre (IRE) and Hitroadjack (IRE) in the Maiden and Intermediate races respectively.
Dean Jones’ Blackfyre has been threatening to win for several starts and was the seven-length victor of Carry on Buddy (GB) with Debacle (GB) back in third.
For Hitroadjack it was his third win of the year and there is doubtless more left for the nine-year-old son of Wareed (IRE). Miss Massey (IRE) chased him home but could not get nearer than nine linghts with Clever des Assence (FR) a further twenty-five lengths remote in third.
Pony racing completed the competitive element of the day with wins for Dewi Haddock and Ruby Price; while the public were also encouraged to enter the Best Dressed award and sport a Royal theme to commemorate the Jubilee.
There is always an end of season party atmosphere at Trecoed, and several racegoers would have been prepared to bed in for the night and enjoy the atmosphere; brewing over the season that has been and no doubt planning and scheming for the one to come.