It was a hectic start to proceedings this weekend at the York and Ainsty point to point near Easingwold, as racing was delayed two hours due to the lack of ambulance and medical cover. The company covering the meeting had gone into liquidation only days before the meeting and failed to inform the organisers, however a great rally round from the team avoided abandonment and replacement paramedics were drafted in. The ground had been watered and produced a surface just on the faster side of good and turned out a healthy number of runners.
It was all celebrations for Lottie Crane who trained her first winner with Ballinahow Bill in the ladies open for her father. Piloted by Crane the pair quickly made their way to the front and were never headed there after, French Seventyfive produced a fine effort in second under Jess Bedi, whilst third went to the consistent Oscar O'scar and Kate Lowcock. Although Lottie's string have been in good form this season, Ballinahow Bill was the first to get his head in front "he's settled alot better this season and I thought he did all his winning from the front last season so we reverted to old tactics" said Lottie who's mount looked to thrive off dominating his field "it's great, I love Bill and I'm delighted he's my first winner" continued Lottie who is currently disputing the top of the area championships.
The fastest race of the day was the Restricted and saw runners Super Lunar and Alright Marlene set a strong pace throughout, however it was McMurphy under Jack Teal who looked un unlikely winner at one point who ran on up the straight and hold on by a length from the rallying Super Lunar and Will Milburn, whilst Jack Andrews made a pleasing return aboard Alright Marlene. It was only six days previously that McMurphy pulled up at Thorpe Lodge but a return to form could be down to a liking for the track "he's run well here in the past and he maybe needed the run a little the other day" said Jack Tealwho would go on to record a double on the day.
Jack's second winner came in the confined race aboard his own Sheperd's Cave, he was never far away and stayed on strongly up the final hill to win going away, he looks a progressive sort who will no doubt make his presence felt in open company, Game As A Pheasant and Jack Andrews came home in second, whilst Major Ridge put up a bold display from the front under Rosie Howarth. It was the winner's fourth win of the campaign and looks to be thriving at the moment and no doubt Jack Teal will have his charge out again before the end of the season "he loves this better ground and needs to go left handed, so we'll stick to left handed tracks" said Teal.
The Men's Open caused a bit of a surprise as the Jack Jordan ridden Hafajay continued his progressive run of form by making it a career three out of five and only broke his maiden tag in March. With only three runners, Jordan was forced to make the running however a confirmed stayer he managed to slip the field and gallop on relentlessly to fend off Wizadora and Young Hurricane, who are notable scalps. Jack was riding for trainer Nicky Tinkler who trains the six year old for breeders Steve and Josie Knowles "he's improving all the time, we didn't really want to be in front but it's worked out well in the end" said a jubilant Jordan, the winner holds an entry in next weeks Heart Of All England but his next target is not yet confirmed "we were considering the Aintree bumper but after Chaddersley I'm not sure if he'd have enough pace" admitted his trainer.
An entertaining start to the day came in the Hunt Members race, with only two runners Rock Of Leon and Jack Teal were odds on favourites, however with a circuit to go his reputation got the better of him as he ran out after the 11th and then after resuming the race and jumping the open ditch quickly came to a halt, whipped round and deposited his pilot, this allowed Secret Pattern to continue alone, however he also showed reluctances turning for home and almost ran out on the bend, after a tight sit Will Milburn steered his mount back down the straight and eventually completed the course in what was by far the slowest time of the day!
The final race on the card saw the return of form for Erica's Dream under Amy Collier for trainer Ian Mason, the pair were always prominent and stayed on well to fend off Good Rhythm; another Dawson juvenile under Tom Strawson, whilst third went to the well fancied Magic Bullet. Erica's Dream has been out of form for some time but has shown a liking for this track, with her finest efforts coming here with her form figures now reading 221 "I'm delighted she's got her head in front and I'm so thankful to Susan and Ian for letting me ride her" said a delighted Collier.
The 4, 5 and 6yo maiden saw an exciting finish between the Cherry Coward trained Glassilaun ridden by John Dawson and the Canizay under Andrew Glass, the latter made most of the running and was challenged by Glassilaun over the final two and the pair battled it out with Dawson's mount coming out on top, third saw another good effort from Peep O'day Dell and Tom Strawson.