Middleton Point to Point Review 

This weekend the Middleton staged the second of two meetings at Sheriff Hutton this season, with conditions very much on the testing side, it was the only meeting in the country to survive the recent wet spell. The Grimthorpe Gold Cup was the feature race on the day, whilst John Dawson continued his good form with a double aboard two useful recruits.

The final race was a 2m 4f maiden for 4, 5 and 6 yo’s and would see a potentially very useful newcomer. Martin Plage trained by Jack Teal was always travelling well under John Dawson and after leading three out, quickened impressively after the last on ground which proved very testing, to easily beat the Dale Peters debutant Endofconversation. Purchased by Jack at the Land Rover sale in Ireland for 17,000 euro, this very athletic son of Bucks Boum made a very likeable impression on debut “I wouldn’t know how good he could be, I’ve not been hard on him but I like him a lot!” enthused the winning trainer, who will no doubt be sending his winner to the sales in the near future.

Dawsons first winner came courtesy of Mount Mews in the Conditions race, however what looked like a penalty kick seemed in doubt approaching the second last as he had to work hard to fend off Darius des Sources and Lois Teal who got within half a length at the line and will no doubt be competitive in calmer waters, whilst Fairy Mix completed for third. Mount Mews winning streak very nearly came to an end however his class shone through at the line “the ground was very soft and he’s probably just idled a little” said Dawson.

The most popular winner of the day came in the Open Maiden courtesy of Carriglux under Joe Wright and also trained by Joe who was producing his first winner. The pair led over three from home and gradually pulled clear up the straight and win comfortably, Greater Glory was running a nice race on debut for the Cowards, whilst Tobshiba was a distant third under the returning Jack Power who has had a spell on the sidelines with a broken collar bone. This was Joe’s first winner as a trainer for The One More Gamble Partnership and Chris Barker “I’m delighted to train my first winner for some fantastic lads, they deserve it!” said Joe, who purchased this 7yo son of Jet Away from David Brace earlier in the year after finishing down the field under rules.

The opening race saw the improving mare Cullin Hills continue her run of good form under Paddy Barlow by taking the Hunt Members race. This 6yo mare made all the running all stayed on strongly after the last to beat Red Opium and Rosie Howarth a comfortable 7 lengths “she’s a very tough mare and stays all day, the softer the better for her!” said the winning rider, whilst future targets could be as soon as the following weekend, however The Heart Of All England Hunter Chase at Hexham could be on the cards later in the season “if she keeps on the upgrade she could be one for the Grimthorpe next year” said trainer Will Milburn.

The feature race was the Grimthorpe Gold Cup run over just over 4 miles and it would go the way of the southern raider Just Your Type for trainer Max Comley and leading rider James King. There were plenty in with a chance over the third last, however two out the winner poured on the pressure and they came 20 lengths clear of Ask To Dance and Thomas Easterby, who just held on from Torygraph and John Dawson in third. The winner was winning his second Classic point to point race of the season, after winning the Lord Ashton of Hyde’s Cup in January.

The Restricted race saw only two go to post but short priced favorite Hollington and Will Easterby run his only other rival Tom Flynn in to the ground. The pair set a strong pace from the word go and Tom Flynn and Will Brown could never reel the easy winner in “he’s very free going and would prefer better ground, but he’s a nice horse and we like him a lot” said Will who will no doubt be hoping he can continue his winning streak.