• Gaby Hill

Desert Retreat Wins His Maiden and Two Tidy Seconds for Cherriman

On Saturday 2nd June the team took four runners to favourable course Garthorpe. First to run was the endearing Velvet Cognac in the Conditions race. Izzie Marshall was on board the gelding in the extremely competitive 11 runner race, sporting blinkers which aided his travelling and jumping throughout. They set off a good pace on good ground, quickening three out, which slightly took our horse by surprise as he didn't have the turn of foot on the ground to go with the leaders. However he stayed on well from the last to gain 5th place and we have learnt that the sharper 5.50 minute course doesn't suit him, so we can bring that into the race planning next season! Velvet Cognac has now been turned away for much deserved a summer break!


Our next runner was Stage One in the nine runner intermediate under owner rider Dan Cherriman. The gelding struggled to go the gallop in the first circuit, again a little caught out by the fast track, but stayed on extremely well in the last mile, finishing very fast and gaining 2nd place by three lengths . This was a great run from the gelding coming back from his victory last time out. Originally the plan was to run at Edgcote the following day as the slower 6.30 minute course would suit the horse better but unfortunately the race was removed from the card so we had to re-route. The gelding has come on no end this season and looked promising in this run!


Dan Cherriman then had a quick turnaround with a ride in the next on Kashmir Peak, owned by his father. It was hot novice riders' race, with any of the six runners in with an outstanding chance. Dan jumped the gelding out who travelled and jumped much better than his previous run at Edgcote, and looked in with a chance over the final two fences but his competitor just found to win by 1/2 a length. It was a game performance from the genuine horse who will now have a much earned summer break after a busy season!


Our final run of the day was maiden Desert Retreat who has had a slightly hapless season. James King was on board the favourite and gave the gelding a great ride to victory! He jumped much better than he has previously and improved as the race went on. The horse travelled with ease and had the race won in the last mile allowing him to travel home without maximum pressure which is always a bonus! It was great for the horse to finally finish with his ears in front and learn the feeling of winning! He may run again before the end of the season.

Happy connections with victorious Desert Retreat

The following day we headed to local new course Edgcote with two runners. Dan Cherriman's busy weekend continued with a ride in the Timico Mixed Open on Smadynium. The race panned out to be a rather competitive nine runner affair on good ground with soft patches. The grey gelding donned blinkers again which suited him and allowed him to travel well and jump brilliantly, sat in the front running pair for the first two circuits. The pair led over the fourth last before tiring up the hill to finish 5th, however Dan gave him a great ride despite the ground catching him out a little. The pair have bonded well in their maiden season and are looking competitive for next!



In the Conditions race we ran According To Trev under Izzie Marshall, which again turned out to be hot race with plenty of runners evenly matched. Trev didn't travel quite so well on the softer ground with his wind being affected so Izzie had her work cut out for her and was pushing the gelding on for a couple of miles! She did a great job to cajole him round and get a fantastic run out of him over the last mile to look favourable at two out, before being overtaken in the closing stages, but finishing well to gain 2nd place. The horse jumped the best he has all season and it was great to see that his confidence has grown throughout with him achieving results more fair to his talent.


Again we were lucky that all of our horses returned safe and sound from their races, none of the six finishing out of the first five. It is wonderful to see them all running competitively and looking so well in themselves. The end of the season is just around the corner and it is almost impossible to remember how it began over six months ago at a cold Bishops Court! Fingers crossed for some more success over the next fortnight and then time for harvest!


Caption competition!! "Dumb & Dumber"?! "Mini Me"?!

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WHERE WE'RE BASED

Woodway Farm

Aston Rowant
Oxford

OX49 5SJ

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© 2018 by Alan & Lawney Hill Racing. Images supplied by Chasdog Photography.