Hunting down a perfect day out

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A REPEAT of last week’s weather will be welcomed on Sunday when the Berwickshire Hunt Point-to-point goes under starters orders at Friars Haugh, Kelso, with the first of seven races off at 1pm, writes Ben Culham.

The annual members’ race looks to have the potential for a very entertaining opening bout.

The experience comes from Kasilia, the mount of amateur whipper-in Amy Brown, and the pair have been engaged in frantic hunting during the winter and eventing in the summer since they completed this race in 2010.

Resurfacing from retirement for this contest has to be of note, with a fine warm-up in the recent Buccleuch Hunt ride under the belt.

The standard is set by Exciting Car, with Rupert Trotter aboard, who can build on a promising second place here a fortnight ago.

Having not failed to live up to his name in previous seasons, this time around, Exciting Car appears to be getting to grips playing the Robin Reliant until the home straight approaches and finishes off the one to beat.

From one stalwart Berwickshire family to another, Doreen Calder has two in the running this year. Home-bred Whisky Hill has only had one start and he deposited his rider at the second fence on that occasion, before continuing with real aplomb. If the pilot can hold his cockpit, this one should be in the mix.

The second Calder representative Flying Master has that point to prove. “Laid back” does not quite cover his outlook on life, although breathing problems seem to have been an issue. Having not completed the course in five starts, his jockey Ben Culham’s first ride could be hard enough work to make him lose yet more timber in order to complete. Quite an April Fools’ day awaits.

Hopefully the weather won’t be joking with a fine day forecast.

It promises to be a perfect family day out, so don’t miss out on the bar and catering provided by a team from the Berwickshire Hunt supporters. Although entries are not out at the time of writing the organisers are expecting some exciting and competitive racing.