David Hucker reviews Warwick’s final races of the season
Sail Away, trained by Dan Skelton and ridden by his brother Harry, took the Class 3 Rosconn Group Novices' Limited Handicap Chase, feature of Wednesday's Wigley Property RaceDay held in aid of The Myton Hospices, to bring the 2021/22 Warwick season to a close, writes David Hucker.
On a bright, but blustery evening, Sail Away, set to concede weight to both his rivals, led from the off over the three mile trip, flying the first fence. He continued to set the pace, putting in an exhibition round and, although Ludlow winner Ultimate Getaway, receiving 13lbs, gave chase, he couldn't match the leader's jumping and Sail Away strolled home to complete a stable double.
Sackett took the field along in the opening Wigley Property RaceDay Amateur Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle over three and a quarter miles, but was caught and passed by Forward Plan approaching the third-last flight. Forward Plan led into the straight, only to be joined by favourite Nickelsonthedime and hat-trick seeking Good News jumping the final flight, and it was Good News, sent off at 15/2, who forged ahead to win under the experienced Zac Baker.
Next up was the Newton LDP Novices' Handicap Hurdle over the minimum trip of two miles in which Bangor-on-Dee winner Kerosine Light had to give weight to his two rivals and it was Rhebus Road, in receipt of 9lbs, who was sent off the 5/6 favourite to follow up his win at Huntingdon. Kerosine Light set a good pace and, with Brian Hughes kicking on turning for home, Rhebus Road couldn't get past him and was collared for second place by outsider Il Re Di Nessuno on the run-in.
Ahead Of Schedule led the nine runners for the EHB Residential Novices' Hurdle, but was joined by Of All The Greys turning for home with two to jump. By the last flight, it was Dan Skelton's Leylak, who had returned from a 406-day break to finish third at Ludlow last time, who was clearly going best of all and he stretched clear on the run-in to beat Carn A Chlamain and Goaheadwiththeplan.
There was close betting between Eva's Diva, runner up on her last run, and Sweet Nightingale, who broke her duck at Newton Abbot three weeks ago, in the Ainscough Strategic Land Mares' Handicap Hurdle. Neither got in a blow, as 15/2 shot Windy Cove set up a clear lead, chased by Maria Magdalena, and she galloped on to win under an enterprising ride from the excellent Sean Bowen.
Leading owner J P McManus had two runners in the Howkins & Harrison Handicap Chase and it was his Gulliver Collonges, returned the 2/1 favourite, who collared Spiritus Mundi on the run-in under a well-judged Jonjo O'Neill Jr. ride.
The Myton Hospices Open Maiden National Hunt Flat brought the curtain down on the evening and the unraced Glorious Oscar headed the betting market but, in the race itself, it was Gary Moore's Madaa who proved the best.