Following a busy weekend for Alan's point-to-point yard, it was the turn of Lawney's national hunt yard runners to compete. We headed to Plumpton with the promise of some confident runs from two very different candidates. The racecourse did a fantastic job to keep the show on the road following inspections due to the recent weather; however the heavy going did result in hurdles being omitted in both races which did not suit our runners of which are both exceptional jumpers.
First to run was Judge Judy in a Novices' Hurdle under Tom Cannon. Following her previous run, which was her maiden outing, we decided to try a more positive approach to keep the mare interested. Whilst green, she responded well to the tactics, carried out to precision by Tom with plenty of confidence, and jumped well, backing up her talent shown at home. Gaining 4th place in a tight battle from the last flight showed much improvement from the mare and a much more positive performance. Owner and breeder Frank Jarvey was pleased with her run and we will aim for a similar race again next time out.
Next was seasoned pro Royal Etiquette who backed up his previous form with another game race in the Handicap Hurdle, jumping superbly. Tom O'Brien was aboard and produced the gelding perfectly at the 2nd last giving him every chance in the testing conditions, unfortunately getting beaten for 3rd by a head in the last strides. Tom did an excellent job considering he received a shoe to the face after an early hurdle, causing him to have a mouthful of blood for the remainder of the race!
Overall we were happy that each horse had tried and gained a place, with Judge Judy gaining vital experience for her future career!