This weekend it was the ever popular Bedale point to point at Hornby Castle, always a popular location for crowds and this year was no different and with the summer weather starting to creep out it was an enjoyable day, with ground riding good to firm. John Dawson continued his good season by recording a double, one of which was trained by himself.
In the restricted race you could say there was non more deserving than Monsun Storm due to his very consistent run of form, however he looked somewhat reluctant as he hit the front and needed all of Dawson strength to drive his mount out towards the line and was always holding the fast finishing Miss Carney under Emma Todd and it looks as if a race of this nature shouldn't be far away for her, whilst third went to early pace setter Alright Marlene under Jack Teal who looked to regress since her debut at Corbridge and this looked something more like her earlier promise. The son of September Storm was well supported in to 6-4 favourite and the first time blinkers looked to have helped the winner pull out the extra bit required.
John's second victory came from the very talented Path To Freedom in the Men's Open, Young Hurricane looked to have the race in the bag turning for the second last, but as Path To Freedom has shown this season he came with a very strong run after the last and collared Young Hurricane on the line. He hasn't always looked straight forward in his race but he has made up for that with his clear talent and strong finishing kick "when he started pointing he was keen and blew them away from the front, but he's learned to settle and race now...he will probably go straight to the Timico final at Cheltenham now" said Dawson of the winner, the pair were well clear of the third which was Hollow Tree and Christy Furness who were a very last minute declaration to the race.
Jack Teal has wasted no time this season, since returning from injury he rode a double on his first day back last week and was quickly on the score sheet in the Conditions race aboard his own Shepherd's Cave, who was turning out for the second weekend in a row, the pair were always tracking his two rivals and stayed on the better over the final two fences and hold off the Grimthorpe fourth Rattle The Cage. The winner looks to have an abundance of stamina and is clearly on an upward curve "he's improving nicely, he needs to go left handed and to have a stiff track...the Pendle meeting would probably suit him" said Teal who not only rides but trains the winner for his mother Jackie Teal and Francis Attmore. Third place went to Carlos Gardel and John Dawson who were last of the three finishers.
The Ladies Open saw two very talented performers with Meldrum Lad just getting his nose in front from Buck Dancing and Jess Bedi who has looked a revelation this season since reverting back to points. A solid jump at the last looked to have sealed it for Buck Dancing but Becky Smith drove her mount back to the lead at the line and score, these two were well clear of Bedford Forrest and Emma Todd. The winner has come with a big reputation from the Justin Landy stable and has the Ladies final at Stratford in his sights "he settles lovely when they go steady but the faster they go the keener he gets!" said Becky Smith of this formerly useful chaser.
The Open Maiden closed the card and it was a very cosy success from Sheriff Hutton runner up Scarlett Peak, formerly he started his career when a good third in a bumper on debut but has taken time to fulfill his promise, ridden by Joe Wright the pair easily moved to the lead two out and stayed on strongly after the last and win well for the Mason family. Clashganny ran another good race in second under Phil Armson, whilst Kimberley Boy who was sent off favourite under Phil Lawrence stayed on in to third and he looks like a win should be on the horizon. The winner is a big strong son of Scorpion who has clearly taken a bit of time but now looks capable of progressing further in to better company.
The opening Hunt Members race was a walk over and the only person to take part was Jamie Stewart who has been partnering his own Hoping He's Kean, Jamie is a vet at Oakland's veterinary and was his first success.