2 Out of 3 Ain't Bad!
WINNER 47 OF 2022: WOODLANDS CHARM, trained by Nigel Tinkler and ridden by Rowan Scott: 'The Ripon Races Ladies Day 16th June Handicap' over 6f at Ripon.
She was 2nd over course and distance 11 days ago, so hopes were high that she would run well again. In the early part of the race she was pretty handy, tracking the leaders, but as things hotted up in front around the 2 furlong marker, she got boxed in. Andrew had to be patient, but saw an opportunity to switch out between horses to make her run. She stayed on strongly and ran on well to lead in the final strides to win by a head, with the favourite in 2nd.
"Woodlands Charm is getting up!" Watch the full race replay here: https://www.attheraces.com/racecard/Ripon/26-May-2022/1520
Timeform rated it as a career best 70+, saying: "Went one better than last time, value for a bit extra too having struggled for room at one point; chased leaders, not clear run under 2f out, switched 1f out, kept on, led close home.”
Andrew said in his Sky Sports Racing interview: "It was quite a messy race and it got very tight. She was brave to put her head down when it mattered. She's very tough!”
See the official photo gallery here: https://louisepollard.co.uk/album.php?id=1022
Syndicate manager Tim says: "Well done to her owners and to Nigel on her third win. She really is a gutsy filly. She clearly likes Ripon, as this was her second course and distance win - the other being at Catterick. She is a fun filly to have on board and being a daughter of Kodiac with 3 wins on her CV so far, is good for her future prospects.”
WINNER 48 OF 2022: DEAR MY FRIEND, on debut. Trained by Charlie and Mark Johnston and ridden by Andrew Mullen: 'The Orton Rigg Restricted Novice Stakes' over 6f at Carlisle.
The son of Pivotal, was having his first start and looked very well in the paddock beforehand - he was certainly the most imposing looking horse in the line-up. Drawn slightly wide in 8, he was slow to get into stride and had to be rushed along to catch the field. Sat towards the rear, Andrew let him find his feet before asking anymore of him. Making headway though on the inner, at about 2f out, our eyes were drawn to the ground he was making up. His strong challenge continued inside the final furlong and he led toward the finish, to win going away by 1/2 a length from the favourite in 2nd.
Watch the full race replay here: https://www.racingtv.com/videos/watch/horse_racing_replays/391945-orton-rigg-restricted-novice-stakes-5
Timeform rated it as an 81 performance, saying: "Is in good hands and made a winning start in taking fashion by the line, deserving extra credit for overcoming greenness and making up a lot of ground to reel in a couple with experience; dwelt, in rear, pushed along 3f out, headway 1f out, edged right, found plenty to lead close home; will stay 7f; sure to progress.”
Charlie Johnston was at the track and he said in his Racing TV interview: "He has been working well at home and I wasn't surprised in the manner of his performance. He is very laid back, but the penny dropped late on. We have had this race in mind for him to start off - we got away with 6f but we think that he would be better over 7f”
See the official photo gallery here: https://www.grossick.co.uk/p/80532khg/C385344482/x2-dear-my-friend
Syndicate manager Mike says: "He was very inexperienced early in the race and it took Andrew the first furlong to get him organised and balanced, but he was learning as he went along and the penny only really dropped in the final furlong, when he flew home up the rail to win going away. He galloped out all the way around the bend and down the back straight and Andrew said afterwards that he couldn't pull him up! He was pleased with his performance and he said that he thought he was a nice prospect. Well done to his owners on his win and it was good to see the promise that he had shown at home come to fruition on the track. He looks to have a bright future."
Of the 8 2-year-olds to have made their debuts, 6 have won! This is our best ever first half of the year, with 48 winners on the board and over £700,000 of race prize money won. This hasn't escaped the notice of new and existing owners either, with two more 2yo's selling out in the last 24 hours from the website.
We are now heading into 'Festival' territory, with Epsom next weekend, and we have a 2yo candidate being set up for the Woodcote there and with Royal Ascot coming up in June, we have The 5f Windsor Castle and the 6f Coventry Stakes also on our radar for two other juveniles. Exciting times indeed!